Part 3 of the Personality Blog Series
We all have our strengths and our weaknesses, but what sets us apart from one another is what we choose to do with them. We’re here to encourage you to make the most of both: to capitalize on your strengths, and to adapt where weaknesses are, using your individual personality to your advantage. There’s no better place to do so than in the workplace.
Capitalize on Your Strengths
If you’ve been through a professional interview process at all, you’re likely aware of the types of questions asked of you. For instance, “What skills do you have that make you right for this job?”, “What are your top three professional strengths?”, “What is one area you’ve had to improve, and how did you do it?”... or something very similar. And, we imagine you have a solid set of fine-tuned answers lined up for each of these standard questions revealing your unique job skill set. Here’s the rub: those questions – the ones acutely related to job skill alone – aren’t the best indicator of your professional capabilities. In fact, your more personal strengths are what will make or break your career.
The real question is: how will your personal strengths work for your professional benefit? Now, an interviewer may not ask you this specific question, but the answer to it reveals the true depth of your strengths: both your tactical skills, and, more importantly, the aspects of your personality that will impact those tactical abilities and bring you the most success in the workplace. It is a question we all need to ask ourselves not just at the precipice of our careers, but throughout to ensure we are giving ourselves the best chance at professional achievement.
Let Your Strengths Shine
So, go ahead and ask yourself that very question: what are the strengths of your personality that will elevate your career? Take a look at the strengths you discovered when examining your personality type in detail. We guarantee you’ll find a majority of the strengths on that list will positively impact you professionally. Some will be obvious, others more obscure, but at the end of the day, YOU – all aspects of you – will reflect in your work. Use that to your advantage.
As an example:
Are you a people person? Someone who has a lot of friends and connections, easy to talk to and relate to? Amazing! Use that aspect of your personality when collaborating with fellow coworkers to create a stronger team environment, form relationships, and build trust amongst your teammates. At the end of the day, we’re all people, not simple worker bees, so your skill in relationship building will simultaneously help boost team collaboration and individual morale.
Keep in mind that utilizing your personality at work can be done no matter what level you are at, or what position you hold. Are you an adventurous soul in your personal life? Apply that at work and try out new strategies when stuck, share your exploratory ideas with your team and show this side of you that you can bring to the table. Allowing your true self to shine through will empower you to tackle your tasks with confidence, and, who knows, maybe your personal strengths will help fill a gap in your company, revealing a new opportunity to grow and achieve more success than you had imagined.
Weaknesses: Acknowledge, Assist, Improve
Though you need to use your unique persona to progress as an individual, use your strengths to aid others with their weaknesses as well. Note that in the workplace, your personal strength may be a coworker’s weakness. If you’re an expert communicator but get distracted easily, and your coworker is a bit more shy yet always on top of his/her tasks, consider teaming up on a project and/or learning from each other. We’re meant to coexist and bring out the best in one another; that should extend into the workplace as well.
While we’re on the topic of weaknesses, it is important to openly acknowledge your own and to look into ways to either improve them or ensure they will not negatively affect your professional productivity. A great place to start is by chatting with your manager or superior. If you feel as though there is one area of your role that you’re not fully succeeding in – let’s say, your organizational skills are lacking and negatively affecting your productivity – connect with your superior and request assistance. Likely, he/she will either have strategies to help you improve, or know a coworker who succeeds in that area that you can connect with and/or collaborate with for a more beneficial outcome. Being open about our shortcomings and showing an eagerness to improve is an esteemed quality to have, especially in the workplace. It shows you are effective at communicating your needs, that you are looking out for the overall benefit of the company, and that you are determined to grow into the best professional version of you.
Next week, we’ll discuss how to apply your personality in your personal life. Stay tuned!