The strengths theory upsets conventional business wisdom by not saying you should get rid of your weaknesses. Instead, it says you should ignore them and capitalize on your strengths. The only way for a company or a person to achieve maximum potential, argue the authors, is to identify areas where built-in advantages exist and then work to become as good as possible at those. In other words, forget about being well-rounded. If you don't speak Spanish, don't try to learn. If you don't seem skilled at selling your products to seniors, don't try to force it. Instead, become a lopsided but phenomenally successful specialist.

Excerpted from "Play To Your Strengths" in the May 2001 issue of Entrepreneur magazine.