These are the questions I posed to my team in preparation for our recent annual planning meeting.
Why superheroes you ask?
When we think about superheroes we think of their strengthens; however, superheroes are so much more multifaceted. Each superhero has a special power or strength as well as a major flaw or weakness. Isn’t it the same for you and me?
As we develop throughout our career it is important to continually assess our skills. What are our core competencies? Where do we excel? What makes each of us stand out from the crowd?
On the flip side we must remember to evaluate our weaknesses. What do we still need to learn? What is our Achilles heel? What is standing in the way of getting that next great job or promotion?
Superheroes spend much of their days developing their skills. They gather new tools for their tool belts, create force fields to fight off the competition and stand up to opposing points of view. Above all, they create coping mechanisms to combat their weaknesses. Couldn’t we all learn a thing or two from them?
When superheroes first discover they have superpowers they are always shocked, amazed and have no idea what to do. In each case they find a guide (or mentor) to help them understand and develop their skills, manage the pitfalls, and grow into the best they can be. Behavior I would recommend to anyone wanting to excel.
Superheroes main purpose in life is to fight off villains, save the world and build a better tomorrow. Well that sounds a lot like what we do on a daily basis. We fight off the competition, put out fires, and build a better organization for ourselves and the people who will come after us.
Show me a great superhero and I will show you a great sidekick. Where would Batman be without Robin? We are all as good as the people we surround ourselves with. I for one would want my Sales Support Manager Lisa at my side if I was stuck in a burning building. Or I would turn to our Marketing Director, JoAnn if I wanted to figure out how to fight off our latest opponent.
Superheroes can teach us a lot about team building. Look at the Avengers! I always tell my team that they are better together then they are apart. Each of them is superstars and has skills and strengths that they share with each other. We may have our weakness, but as a team we are unstoppable!
Superheroes also teach us about focus. They know why they are here, what needs to get done, and they go for it, no questions asked.
In the end, they always wind up showing their vulnerability. That is what makes them believable, why we follow them, and ultimately trust them with our fate. They almost always fall in love and often have to make difficult work life balance choices. Look at Spider-Man; he had to choose between the woman he loved and saving the world.
In retrospect, the superheroes theme was the perfect choice. After all as I demonstrated, they are a lot like you and I. We have all learned a thing or two from examining their work ethic.
So again I ask, if you were a superhero who would you be? Reply and let me know.