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Playing to your strengths



The question – “What are your strengths?” – is likely to be one that you have faced on more than one occasion during the course of your professional life. Many of us will have had to quickly think of an answer during a job interview for a new role; others may well have had to search for a response during an annual review or appraisal.


What we identify and how we respond can vary markedly between individuals. This is because the question itself can often be understood very differently – some people understand it to be their key skills and competencies, for example, while others consider particular character traits or qualities. Some people are perhaps overly-confident of their own capacity, while others will vastly underestimate the skills they bring to their organisation.


Whatever skills a person might identify as their strengths are likely to be critical facets of their overall professional proposition, and understanding how they can support them to be successful in your current role and future career is therefore crucial.


It can help professionals to understand their role in a larger team, and in the organisation as a whole – understanding, for example, how your own talents complement those of other team members. It also helps you understand where your future career might take you, as well as identify when you might be in a position that doesn’t make best use of your particular skillset.


In a sense, identifying your key strengths is important in the same way that an organisation needs to identify its USP to distinguish itself in the market. Without a competitive advantage that marks it out from competitors, a business is unlikely to flourish. The same is true for individuals.


Of course, this makes it important to accurately identify the strengths that you genuinely bring to the table, as there can often be a wide gap between a person’s perception of themselves and the opinion held by others. This is why feedback – whether from colleagues, managers, reports or elsewhere – is so critical in helping to bridge this gap. Other individuals’ perspectives of abilities and talents can often be very different from our own, and so help to provide a more complete picture of the skillset we bring to an organisation.


TKG offers a range of talent management solutions, including 360 Degree Feedback, Assessment Centres, and Leadership Assessments, alongside a complete suite of bespoke coaching services. Click here to find out more.