Monday, May 23, 2011

3D Juggling 528: Rocket Science

Claire writes: "It's when someone gets slightly irritated when describing their skills and says 'Of course I do that - doesn't everyone?' that we know we are getting to the heart of what's unique about them. Because not everyone does things like you do - and probably your most important skills are the ones that you don't think are rocket science.

I can remember speaking at a conference about career change and finding your purpose.  Having invited all the delegates to talk with their neighbour to try and extract their core skills, a man in the front row stood up.  He told me that he had taken early retirement at 50, had a great CV and wouldn't be doing the exercise.  I offered to look at his CV instead.  The first page spoke of communication skills.  'Imagine that a lady from customer services in a supermarket is sat next to you.  She also has communication skills', I said. 'What are different about yours?'

You could tell that he understood things in a different way when he smiled and replied: 'I'm a trained hostage negotiator. I get it!' Then he rewrote his CV!!

Clarity about skills is important when you are looking for a different kind of job and are unclear what that might be.  It's also important when you are being interviewed and all the candidates fit the person profile.  The job is likely to be appointed on that extra piece of uniqueness. And you need to be able to describe it.

What is different about your skills? Think about it..."

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