For many job seekers, discussing their strengths and expertise is not something that comes naturally. If others describe you as “too modest,” or you are uncomfortable highlighting your successes, achievements, and unique qualities, keep reading. I’ve got several suggestions for presenting yourself to potential employers in a way that feels authentic and comfortable.
To start, answer the following questions:
- How does your work performance add value to your current employer and the customers/clients you serve? What problems to you help solve? How do you make their lives (or work) easier and better?
- What are your top skills and accomplishments? Do you have a reputation as your team’s or company’s expert or “go-to” person?
- What are some of your success stories, or scenarios that describe your leadership skills?
- Who are the members of your “support team” that can help you identify your strengths and boost your confidence: friends, family, professional colleagues, clergy, therapist? What compliments have they shared about your personality and work performance?
Important Points to Consider:
- Talking about yourself is a necessity. Would you want to hire someone who was unable to tell you anything positive about themselves? While it can feel uncomfortable putting the spotlight on yourself, it is a necessity in the job search. Hiring managers want to know why you are the best candidate for the job: not only that you have the qualifications they seek, but also that you are confident in your own abilities and talents. Make a list of your top successes and achievements to share in your resume, on your LinkedIn profile, and in job interviews. Practice discussing these talking points with a trusted friend or family member so that they begin to feel more “natural.”
- Remember that promoting yourself is not bragging. You are simply stating facts about why you are a strong candidate. How can an employer know what you can do for them, unless you tell them? It is your responsibility to explain how your experience and skills meet the position’s qualifications or fit an organization’s mission. Consider the work you do, its i
- mpact and results on others: how have your actions and accomplishments added value to your team and your employer? What projects have you helped launch or improve? What problems have you helped solve? Look beyond the responsibilities of each of your positions to the activities that illustrate your achievements and competence.
- Keep a “kudos” or compliments file where you can collect positive feedback, awards, recognition and “shout-outs” from managers, colleagues, and customers/clients. Take a look at references and recommendations that you have already received from colleagues – what compliments that stand out? Ask others what they see as your top strengths and skills. Remember that personal attributes, like being dependable, a creative problem solver, or a strong collaborator are also extremely valuable in the workplace.
- Lastly, don’t be afraid to let your personality shine. As obvious as it may sound, employers want to know that you are excited to join their organization. Express your passion, whether it is for the position’s responsibilities, the company’s mission, and/or the field itself. What excites you and “lights you up?” Why did you choose this field? Your cover letter and LinkedIn profile are great places to share this information as well.
Need more guidance? Blooming Careers offers a Confidence Package! Contact me to learn more.