We live in a society that doesn't always 'approve' of those who blow their own trumpets. Self confidence can be confused with arrogance, conceit and a lack of humility. But, there are times when you should dig deep, stand tall and shout from the rooftops about everything you do well.
All too often I meet individuals who can't answer the simplest questions about their skills and experience. "What do you do best?" is a question I ask those I work with (not just work seekers, but employers too) and frequently when I ask, I'm met with stony silence, often followed by what the individual thinks I want to hear. "Umm, I'm really a jack of all trades, I'm a multi-tasker, I love every aspect of what I do" or "Well, we are fantastic employers who make sure our staff are looked after"
It's good to be positive, but this doesn't really help to identify the things that will make my clients / candidates happy in the long run, which is of course the ultimate goal .
What I'm looking for here are specifics, what do you actually excel in? Everyone has strengths, yes everyone! So, what are yours? If you don't know, you should, and when you have figured it out you should tell the right people, so they can use those amazing skills that you have developed!
Ask yourself, your colleagues, your family, your friends "What do I do best?" . Encourage everyone to always identify and focus on the bright, the brilliant and the positive! Share and celebrate that information and then when the time comes and someone else asks the question, the answer will be right there on the tip of your tongue.
Recent answers I've had include:
Once someone starts talking about their strengths, it opens up a positive dialogue on how to use those strengths, how to match them to a role, how to demonstrate those skills effectively (especially the chocolate cake!) and takes the conversation in a constructive and engaging direction.
I'd like to see a society where skill is celebrated rather than played down, where we focus on the positive instead of the negative and where individuals are encouraged to shine brightly in everything they do.
So give it some thought, what do you do best?
I'd love to know so feel free to shout about your talents in the comments below.
If you would like advice on finding work, demonstrating your strengths, preparing for interviews, writing a CV or cover letter, you can contact me for free support , just email email@example.com
Founder of Sunshine Recruitment Solutions, Fellow of the Institute of Recruitment Professionals