Get a Career You Love!
Jo Mills is the General Manager of Career Analysts, an organisation dedicated to helping individuals and businesses to identify their talent and realise their potential.
She writes a regular column for nzgirl to help you all with your career worries, troubles and questions…
In keeping with this month’s Goddess Guide special, our career expert Jo Mills talks you through how to find your special career talents and how to harness these for career success to find a job you’ll love…
At work, during study or during career planning sessions, we spend a lot of time planning how we develop and grow our skills. And this is a great idea. But your current jobcompetence and your ongoing success is going to be based on how well you leverage your strengths and talents that come naturally and that you already have. By planning your career around using your natural talents, you will be able to become an expert more quickly, perform at a higher level and get paid more!
What are my talents?
Our talents are often based on the things we enjoy doing and it makes sense to focus our attention in that way. It is so much easier to invest time and energy in learning things that we are naturally interested in.
Close your eyes for a moment and think about what you enjoy doing – the times when you feel relaxed, energised and happy – the moments at work when you are feeling ‘in the zone’. You can probably identify some common themes across those different moments. For example, were you surrounded by people? helping someone? working out a problem? immersed in technology?
Thinking about those key themes, pull out the strengths that you demonstrate in those moments. Are you a great coach? able to get to the heart of a problem quickly? able to implement a process correctly? can pinpoint errors in spreadsheets?
Write down the key talents that you possess right now, and then rank them in order of enjoyment.
Using my talents in my career planning
Once you know your talents, you need to make sure that you are in a role that utilises them. Each of us have different needs for competence in a role, but most of like to know that we are doing a great job most of the time.
If your current role or business doesn’t utilise your greatest talents most of the time, then you are missing out on the opportunity to be a great performer, make more money and get real satisfaction from your work. It is difficult to be great at your job if you are working in an area that you don’t enjoy and that doesn’t utilise your key strengths. Talk about making life difficult for yourself!
That doesn’t mean we should stop learning. We should always be striving to take our talents to the next level of expertise and also adding to our skill sets.
When thinking about your career plan and your next steps, go back to your list of talents and map against the opportunities that come your way. Your talent list becomes a decision making tool that you can use to target your job search focus or to say yes or no to projects, promotions or training.
Leverage your talents
- The more you demonstrate your strengths or talents, the more capable you seem overall, and the more opportunities that will come your way. You can do this by:
- Find ways to train others, lead projects, write articles or present at conferences in your area of expertise.
- Continually grow your expertise in your strength areas so you become the ‘go to’ person for any questions.
- Make sure you have a comfortable mix of tasks that you can already do well and new learning in your role.
- Try to avoid the areas that you aren’t so great at, or just dislike doing. Systemise, delegate or eliminate these from your role as much as possible.
For a quick, online way to get a list of your talents, go to www.careeranalysts.co.nz and click on the Online Career Tools tab to sign up for our leading edge assessment tools. You can check out sample reports to see how the tools work and the great reports that you get with each tool!
Want to find out more? Four lucky readers will WIN a career talents analysis to find out what career suits them thanks to Jo and the team at Career Analysts. Simply head to their website and tell us what is the value of the Career Talents analysis report…
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