Assessing Your Strengths for the Workplace
If you are looking for a new job, or simply wanting to effectively manage your career, you have to know and understand what you have to offer to an employer. What makes you valuable? And what distinguishes you from your peers? Essentially, what is your value proposition? To answer any of these questions, you first have to assess your strengths.
Steps to Assessing Your Strengths
Take an inventory of your strengths: Look at the positions that you have held, what concrete skills, talents, knowledge, and abilities have you acquired through education, professional development and work experience.
How others see you: What strengths do your superiors, colleagues and direct reports identify in you? What do they think you excel at?
Review performance appraisals: Look at some of your performance appraisals if you have access to them. What did your managers say you did well?
Understand your strengths: Take time to reflect on your identified strengths, what do they mean on a practical level? Look at your failures and successes, what contributed to them? This gives you insights into who you are and why some tasks may have appeared simple to you and why others were so difficult. You will also understand what tasks you are well-suited for in the workplace.
Would you hire you? If you are interested in a position, would you honestly hire you based on your strengths? If you are gainfully employed, look at the requirements of the position, would you hire yourself today? Assessing your strengths enable you to determine if you are meeting all the critical requirements of the job?
Apply strengths: Self-knowledge is a powerful tool. Determine which careers will allow you to leverage your strengths daily.
The above process is a thoughtful one, and takes some time to work through. Today, there is a plethora of online assessment tools at your fingertips.
Online Assessment Tools
Strengths Finder Test, which can be accessed online with a key from the books Now, Discover Your Strengths by Marcus Buckingham and Donald Clifton or Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath. The test helps you identify your top five strengths with an emphasis on career-related abilities.
Workuno Strengths Test, which will help you find your preferred way of thinking, feeling and behaving.
The MAPP™ Career Assessment Test, which is a comprehensive assessment test, comprised of 71 different triads, or three statements. Choose which one you would most prefer or least prefer, with one left blank.
Assessing your strengths in the workplace should be a part of your career strategy. If you have never assessed your strengths, take action now. You have the option of going old school or using one of the online tools.
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