Every person interviewed at Facebook is asked the same interview question: “On your very best day at work—the day you come home and think you have the best job in the world—what did you do that day?”
The genius behind this question is that it gets to the core of the applicant’s primary motivation as well as revealing their greatest strengths. When a candidate can articulate what makes them feel like they have the best job in the world, Facebook wisely positions them to do that work as a significant part of their daily job. Instead of hiring a person for their brilliance and then managing them to be a different version of themselves by fixating on their weaknesses, this company aims to hire and support employees who are engaged in their work from the start.
The key to being successful in any endeavor of life is to lean into who you already are. This requires that we let go of our notion that we can be anything we want to be as long as we work hard enough. Let’s reframe the Facebook interview question:
On your best day of parenting—the day you think to yourself, “I love being a parent!”—what did you do that day?
Take a few minutes to think about this and then write down your answer. If you find it difficult to articulate, perhaps it’s time to evaluate whether aspects of your parenting style aren’t true to your strengths.
In our rapidly changing culture, we need to know our strengths to understand where we fit in. Our kids need us to know who we are so they can follow our lead and learn from us in a way that resonates with them and helps them learn their own strengths.
Playing to your strengths in life requires self-awareness through self-evaluation. In fact, of the qualities listed as most essential to effective leadership, self-awareness tops most lists as the premium quality to pursue. There are myriad self-assessments on the market today. Many of them are effective and quite helpful to understand different aspects of our personalities and proclivities.
You can refine and deepen your discovery of your parenting strengths by learning more about yourself and gain a new appreciation for different facets of your personality. Accepting our different traits allows us to become the best version of ourselves. As we grow in this acceptance, we also gain appreciation for the strengths of others and marvel at the brilliance we find in our partners.
Another way to think about this is to reflect on the level of engagement we bring into our parenting. According to Gallup, people who focus on their strengths are six times more likely to be engaged compared to their counterparts who choose to focus on their weaknesses. This translates to parenting in the following ways:
look forward to spending time with their kids
have more positive than negative interactions with their kids
treat their kids well
talk about their kids in positive terms to their friends and other family members
achieve more with their kids daily
experience more memorable moments with their kids
Parenting from a strengths perspective opens the door for a greater parenting experience for parents and kids alike. Engaged parenting leads to a kid who has more confidence, direction, and hope.
Why wouldn’t more parents want to lead their families from a strengths perspective and enjoy these outcomes? The reality is that most do not know what they are missing and are unaware of the amazing benefits of shifting to focus on strengths.
Brandon and Analyn Miller are successful business owners, authors of Incredible Parent and Play to Their Strengths, and the parents of seven children They are passionate about seeing families engage a strengths-based parenting approach that unearths the uniqueness in every child and empowers positive parent-child relationships through every stage of life. Brandon is a Certified Strengths Coach through the Gallup Organization and the CEO of 34 Strong. Analyn owns and operates the Analyn Miller Group, part of Keller Williams Realty.