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Freak Management

Can being a freak make you a good manager?

That's the theme of Freak Factor, which encourages people to "flaunt their weaknesses." That's part of being freaky.

Author David Rendall has three main points to make in a PDF that's a free download on Change This:

1.There is nothing wrong with you. Weaknesses are important clues to your strengths.

2.You find success when you find the right fit. You need to match your unique characteristics to situations that reward those qualities.

3.Your weaknesses make you different. They make you a freak and it's good to be a freak.

The essay has a nice chart that catalogs 16 weaknesses and their corresponding strengths (disorganized = creative, obnoxious = enthusiastic, and so on). It then walks through those points with clever examples from the real world (Einstein was disorganized and very creative, for instance), ending many points with Freak Fallacies ("I need to be well-rounded") and Freak Facts ("no one will pay you for being mediocre").

There are also four tips for managing like a freak:

1. Don't try to change people.
2. Choose the right people.
3. Find what is right with people.
4. Let people be freaks (that is, recognize that employees are individuals).

The overall takeaway seems to be that we shouldn't try to fix our weaknesses, but focus on those corresponding strengths. Such advice makes me freak out. I don't want to dwell on my weaknesses, but I do want to minimize their impact on my professional life.

I guess I'm not ready to have a freaky day.