Understanding Your Strengths

young people

If you want to thrive in the right role, it’s important for you to know where your strengths lie so that you can demonstrate your value or true worth to employers. Essentially, your strengths are the most valuable traits and attributes that sets you apart from other candidates and make you an asset to a specific employer.

What are Workplace Strengths?

A strength is defined as the ability to provide consistent performance in a given activity. Everyone is blessed with their own unique set of interpersonal skills and attributes that come naturally to them and make certain tasks a lot easier to perform.

Your workplace or professional strengths are a blend of your natural talents, skills, competencies and personality. They are those work-related traits and qualities that you have cultivated over the course of several years of work and life experiences. Essentially, they are based on personal attributes that come naturally to you.

For example, “the ability to persevere in the face of adversity”, “a natural friendliness that makes it easy to build and cultivate relationships and bring out the best in people” or “an engaging sense of humor used to bring out the best in everyone” are all examples of strong workplace strengths. Your strengths are your unique value. They are what differentiate you from your competitors and help you stand out from a pool of similarly qualified candidates.

It is very important to realize that your workplace strengths are different from your job skills. Your skills are those generic competencies that enable you perform specific tasks. An Administrative Assistant, for example, needs the following skills to perform the role: “proficiency in MS office”, “ability to type 60 words per minute”, “accurate reporting”, etc. These are job skills and competencies, not strengths.

Skills are a lot easier to acquire than strengths. For example, if you lack Ms Office skills, you may be able to learn it with a three-month hands-on training course. However, a strength is not so easy for anyone to acquire with a training course. This is why employers are more interested in your strengths than your skills as these are the defining characteristics that make you unique and differentiate you from everyone else.

Advantages of Using Your Professional Strengths

According to research by Gallup, people who use their strengths at work daily are six times more likely to be engaged on the job and less likely to experience stress or anxiety. When you use your strengths at work, you rapidly learn new skills and feel more energized, confident and esteemed.

When you get into a workplace that maximizes your personal strengths, you’ll know it instantly. Coming to work will no longer be a chore and even on the bad days, you’ll still feel as though you are being useful and getting things done. You’ll surprise yourself at how fast you scale up the professional ladder.

The thing is, employers watch for passion in what you’re doing, and the best way to find that dream job is by finding one that aligns well with your workplace strengths.

Knowing your strengths is essential to doing well and flourishing in a workplace as already mentioned, but not just in being happy. Your superiors will recognize your effort to do a job well even if you feel as though you are not putting in all that much effort at all. You will succeed in your career path much faster and easier than in a job that doesn’t allow you to use or develop your natural skillset.

As with any position, your skills will strengthen and your weaknesses will become less noticeable. Being in the right workplace will give you space and time to develop, strengthen and use these important personal skills to everyone’s benefit.