We all have unique gifts or talents that we bring with us to a new job. These might include:
- tangible skills (i.e. how to utilize a specific piece of software)
- intangible skills (i.e. fast learning agility)
- personal characteristics (i.e. strong work ethic)
When you are looking for a new job and combing through bullet after bullet of job requirements, think more broadly about the skills you bring to the table – particularly intangibles and personal characteristics.
Your Impact is Greater Than You Realize
Even though there are stated responsibilities for each position, each applicant will approach that job with their unique skills and talents. The impact an individual has on a specific job will likely be greater than just meeting those stated responsibilities. Oftentimes, though, we are unable to recognize our intangible, unique gifts and talents. We do them so automatically that we oftentimes assume others have the same skills.
For example, an individual with the ability to learn new information or processes quickly, will get up to speed in their job faster than some of his/her peers who learn new information at a slower pace. This ability to learn new information quickly can be a great advantage to both the individual who may be offered additional opportunities and the company since the individual will make a contribution more quickly. Since the individual is able to learn information and processes quickly, she may not recognize that others are slower and take this skill for granted.
What are Your Intangible Skills?
What are the unique skills and abilities that you bring to your career? Answering some of the following questions may help you identify the unique gifts you have:
- What do you do that is different from others in your field?
- How would your colleagues describe your strengths?
- On what issues are you the go-to person in your organization?
- What do you know more about than most people?
- What would not get done in your position if someone else replaced you?
Identifying your unique combination of skills, talents and personal characteristics helps you create your brand. In turn, you can argue as to why you are the best candidate for a specific position. Being the best candidate for a promotion or a new job is not simply based on your tangible skills and experience. The intangibles and personal characteristics along with your tangible skills and experience can make you the best fit.
Amy Wolfgang is a career coach who founded Wolfgang Career Coaching and co-founded Coaching 4 Good. She brings over 15 years of corporate and coaching experience to help organizations boost employee engagement while simultaneously helping her clients excel in their careers. She is a certified PCM (Professional Career Manager) and has a Master’s degree in Educational Psychology from The University of Texas at Austin.
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