When you interviewed to get your job, there’s a good chance that you were asked about your career strengths and weaknesses. Have you thought about them since that time?
It’s easy to get into the routine of work. You may aim for the next promotion. However, you can easily lose sight of the big picture. If you allow this to happen, then it may feel like you’re drifting through your career without ending up where you truly want to be.
Battle this problem by taking the time to regularly review your career strengths. Moreover, make sure that they’re currently working for you the best that they can.
Focus on Career Strengths, Not Weaknesses
Don’t make the mistake of focusing too much on your weak spots. Of course, you should be aware of what those are. You should certainly make sure that they aren’t limiting you in any way. Naturally, it doesn’t hurt to improve in any area.
However, when you improve upon your weaknesses, you simply make yourself less weak. In contrast, when you build upon your existing career strengths, you empower yourself to truly soar to the next level.
After all, you’re already great at certain things. If you can become even better, then you will have a talent that others in the field will be hard-pressed to compete with.
Take Stock of Your Career Strengths
Do an annual review of your personal career strengths. You may develop new strengths or think of things you hadn’t realized before. Moreover, this review keeps you focused on putting those strengths to use.
First, brainstorm a list of all of your strengths. What do you do well? What are you great at? Dig deep and try to think of the little things. One question to ask yourself is, “what do people always ask my advice on?”
You may think of yourself as someone who is great at meeting deadlines. However, if everyone comes to you for opinions on what to do for the office Christmas party, then you might be overlooking a strength for team building.
Don’t just rely on your own perspective here. It’s too narrow for you to really see the full realm of your strengths. Add to your list by asking co-workers, friends, and mentors what they see as your career strengths. Look back over your performance reviews, emails from bosses, and awards to see where additional strengths may lie.
Are Your Career Strengths Working for You?
Being good at something is nice. However, that’s all it is if you aren’t leveraging those strengths.
Here are some questions to ask yourself:
- In what ways does your current position maximize your career strengths?
- How could you make changes to your routine to emphasize your strengths?
- Who can you delegate weak areas to in order to have time to focus on your strengths?
- Do others, especially bosses, see the value of your strengths? If not, how can you show them?
- Where do you see your career in 1, 5, and 10 years? How can you use your strengths to get you where you want to be?
Some of the ways that you can make the most of your career strengths include:
- Update your resume to clearly reflect your strengths.
- Ask for more work responsibility in areas where you can excel.
- Volunteer for strengths-based tasks that can get you noticed by the higher-ups.
- When requesting recommendations, let the person know which strengths you’d love highlighted.
- Consistently seek ways to strengthen your strengths, so that you can really stand out in this particular area over time.
Counseling can help you assess how to build up your career strengths. Learn more here.