August 3, 2012 | Barb Carr

Career Development: Boost Your Career with Your Unique Skills

Whatever you are, be a good one. ~ Abraham Lincoln

Employers value extra skills and experience that employees bring to a position even though they aren’t required for the position. Good job candidates understand this when they are trying to get hired and are quick to point out their value-adds, but once hired, many become complacent in attempting more than a job description.

A good place to begin planning value-adds is by reviewing your top responsibilities and asking yourself how you can improve your performance of them with your unique skills. If you are not sure which responsibilities have priority, ask your boss for input. In fact, it is a good idea to ask your boss even if you think you know so you do not waste time improving performance on responsibilities that will not be appreciated.

Also, seek new opportunities to use skills your company is not utilizing.  These opportunities create wider company exposure and broaden your organization’s thinking about what you can do.  Bringing more than what’s expected can make you stand out as an employee, and keeps a wider range of skills sharp.

Only 3 to 5% of us write down our improvement goals and the average number of times a person will try to achieve a new goal is less than one.  It is not hard to get ahead of this average just by writing our goals down and attempting them once.  You are a unique individual with inherent value that no else possesses.

Write down your goals to improve performance within your current responsibilities, and look for new opportunities to use underutilized skills.  You still have time to boost your career in 2012 by demonstrating your unique and valuable skills.


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