CNLP 391: Patrick Lencioni on How to Discover Your Working Genius, Uncovering Why Some Aspects of Leadership Drain You and Others Energize You, and How to Get the Best Out of Your Team

Share This Post

Patrick Lencioni noticed that no matter how long or how well a leader leads, some things continue to frustrate almost every leader.

Pat and his team came up with a new assessment called Working Genius designed to help every leader figure out what energizes and what drains them, and where their best contribution comes from.

Pat explains all six types of Working Genius and how to use the insights to best position yourself and your team.

Welcome to Episode 391 of the podcastListen and access the show notes below or search for the Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts and listen for free.

Plus, in this episode’s What I’m Thinking About segment, Carey talks about why he thinks you’re going to need to pivot in 2021.

 Twitter | LinkedIn | Table Group | Working Genius

The 30 Day Pivot

The world has never changed more quickly than it’s changing right now, and leaders have never felt overwhelmed.

I constantly hear from leaders that everything is changing so fast it’s just impossible to keep up…decision fatigue is a real issue these days. You may not even feel like you have the bandwidth to do one more thing.

What if you could short circuit that?

Here’s the thing… you and your team get overwhelmed by decisions for a few reasons:

  • You can’t figure out the best path to take.
  • You tend to be a perfectionist.
  • You’re driven by a fear of making the wrong decision.

Decision-making can be exhausting. And when the decision-making process is tiring, it makes taking action even harder.

If you want to simplify your decision-making and get your team action-oriented, check out to start making progress in the next 30, 60 and 90 days.

Dwell App

Dwell is an audio Bible app with a simple mission: To help you get in the Word and stay in the Word! They have loads of inspiring voices, Bible translations, and original background music.

Some of Dwell App’s features include:

  • Listening Plans — Start a daily habit of engaging with God through one of Dwell’s many Bible listening plans
  • Playlists — Dwell has tons of Scripture playlists, like ones based on mood
  • Dwell Mode — Use Dwell mode to meditate, memorize and pray while listening to Scripture
  • And, brand new, a sleep timer — You and your family can fall asleep to your favorite books and stories of the Bible without losing your spot or draining your battery!

Get Dwell today by going to and get 20% off an annual or lifetime subscription.

Patrick Lencioni’s Working Genius Assessment, use code CAREY to get 50% off

The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni

The Motive by Patrick Lencioni

CNLP 299: Patrick Lencioni on His Personal Leadership Crash, How He Moved Through It, and How to Check Your Motive as a Leader

CNLP 348: Patrick Lencioni on How Virtual Teams and Events are Often Better, His Best Advice for Church Leaders and Preachers, and Why So Many Leaders Abdicate Their Responsibilities

CNLP 222: Patrick Lencioni on Saying No to Steve Jobs, Motivating Millennial Workers and the Three Qualities You Need to Look For to Create the Ideal Team

Table Group Consultant & Practitioner Alliance (CAPA)

Homes of Hope International

7 Things That Vanished in 2020 That Make Leadership That Much Harder by Carey Nieuwhof

Text CAREY to 33777 to join more than 80,000 subscribers to our leadership content

*As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.


1. The pandemic ironically caused work relationships to become more personal, and that’s a good thing

The Coronavirus pandemic probably taught you a lot about what can be accomplished via remote work. One of the best things Pat and his team noticed was that they became much more invested in each other’s personal lives while taking Zoom calls from their homes. Pat is going to keep that as a part of their culture moving forward.

2. Leaders need to stop feeling guilty for their natural giftings

So many people spend their entire lives trying to be good at things they aren’t naturally gifted at. With his new assessment, Working Genius, Pat hopes to give people permission to acknowledge and avoid what they aren’t good at, and try to focus on the things they’re great at!

3. If you’re in the wrong role, change it.

So, what if someone takes an assessment and realizes their position is the opposite of their natural gifting? Pat recommends you bring the assessment to your boss, and ask him/her to look it over, and potentially try to find some pivots that might put you in a position to thrive.

If you can’t find a pivot like that, Pat recommends you shouldn’t hold onto a job in which you aren’t gifted. Look for something in which you can thrive.

Quotes from Episode 391

We’ve got to stop feeling guilty for the gifts God did or didn’t give us. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet Staffing based on people's gifts makes so much sense on a human level and on an organizational level. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet Most of the time, a challenge provides an opportunity if you step back and look at it that way. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet People understanding each other and tapping into their skills more makes everybody more joyful. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet We have to understand the God-given geniuses, competencies and frustrations we have. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet I now know how to describe my frustration and how to say, 'This is what's causing me frustration, I need other people to do this.' @patricklencioni Click To Tweet It's a genius to be able to set aside your desires to help somebody, and not everybody is good at doing that. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet One thing that disappeared in 2020 was consensus. That makes team buy-in really difficult. @cnieuwhof Click To Tweet Flexibility and agility are superpowers in this ever-changing world. @cnieuwhof Click To Tweet The problem with incremental change has been that incremental change delivers incremental results. @cnieuwhof Click To Tweet

Read or Download the Transcript for Episode 391

Looking for a key quote? More of a reader?

Read or download a free PDF transcript of this episode here.

Watch Back Episodes of The Podcast on YouTube

Select episodes of this podcast are now on YouTube. Our YouTube Channel gives you a chance to watch some episodes, not just listen.


Subscribe for free and never miss out on wisdom from world-class leaders like Brian Houston, Andy Stanley, Craig Groeschel, Nancy Duarte, Henry Cloud, Patrick Lencioni, Francis Chan, Ann Voskamp, Erwin McManus and many others.

Subscribe using your favorite podcast app via

Apple Podcasts


Google Play



Spread the Word. Leave a Rating and Review

Hopefully, this episode has helped you lead like never before. That’s my goal. If you appreciated it, could you share the love?

The best way to do that is to rate the podcast on Apple Podcasts and leave us a brief review! You can do the same on Stitcher and on TuneIn as well.

Your ratings and reviews help us place the podcast in front of new leaders and listeners. Your feedback also lets me know how I can better serve you.

Thank you for being so awesome.

Next Episode: Rachel Cruze

Rachel Cruze identifies 7 money tendencies everyone has: From safety or status, abundance or scarcity and experiences or things. She runs through all 7 motivators to help you understand your tendencies. She also outlines what she learned during the crisis of 2020 and how you can prepare for an uncertain year ahead.

Subscribe for free now so you won’t miss Episode 392.

Lead With Confidence and Clarity. Grow Your Church.

As leaders, we tend to see the challenges and roadblocks before other people do.

We've all been there before...

  • You need to refresh your vision for the future but know that change will be an issue for that person.
  • You're overstaffed (or missing a key role) and can't find the right person to fill the role.
  • You aren't reaching enough new people even though you've tried everything that's working for other churches.
  • You can see the issue but aren't confident in what to do about it.

And with another Sunday morning coming up, it'll just have to wait until next week when you have a few minutes to figure it out.

Now ask yourself this:

What would it feel like to have those answers at your fingertips 24/7?

Whether it's reaching new people, improving your preaching, increasing volunteers, refreshing your vision, engaging your staff, or any of the countless challenges we face as church leaders, The Art of Leadership Academy will equip you to lead your church with confidence and clarity.

Between comprehensive church leadership courses, live coaching calls, staff and volunteer training resources, and direct access to a private online community of senior-level church leaders, you'll get the exact insights and answers that fuel your church for growth.

Share This Post
Carey Nieuwhof
Carey Nieuwhof

Carey Nieuwhof is a best-selling leadership author, speaker, podcaster, former attorney, and church planter. He hosts one of today’s most influential leadership podcasts, and his online content is accessed by leaders over 1.5 million times a month. He speaks to leaders around the world about leadership, change, and personal growth.