4 simple ways to uncover your super-powers

Jul 9, 2020

One of the most common question I get asked in my consults or new client intake forms is “How do I figure out my unique strengths?”

Or, “How do I communicate my value and what makes me unique?”

At the core of these questions is a lack of clarity around professional direction — and someone’s desire to develop or change their current career.

Since the start of the pandemic, many people are realising their steady, well paid jobs aren’t as secure as they once thought. I’ve certainly noticed a rise in people reassessing their career options as they look to take control of their professional lives.

Lockdown also forced us to embrace technology and remote working. As organisations start to recognise the benefits, the move towards an increasingly flexible workforce is inevitable.

In fact, a recent survey by AHRI (Australian HR Institute) found 80% of HR leaders expect their companies to adapt the way they work. For the majority, on a permanent basis. With these workplace changes comes a growing need for individuals to retrain or upskill to stay relevant.

The bottom-line? It’s more important than ever to know how to differentiate yourself and articulate your value to clients or potential employers.

Read on to learn 4 ways to discover your super-powers so you can do work that lights you up, communicate your value and attract more clients and professional opportunities.

#1 — SELF-EVALUATE

One of the simplest ways to identify your super-powers is to start by identifying your ‘zone of genius’.

Your zone of genius is a combination of your purpose, passions — and unique strengths. The tasks and activities that come naturally, almost effortlessly, to you. Work with meaning — which aligns to your core strengths and what you love to do.

Think about an instance when you were in a state of ‘flow’. When you completely lost track of time. These moments point to your passions — which are closely connected to your strengths.

Ask yourself — what are my innate strengths? What special skills do I have? And what do I contribute that’s unique?

I often talk about the importance of establishing your business (or career) around your ‘zone of genius’ and the work that motivates and energises you.

In my view, this is fundamental for long-term job satisfaction, business sustainability and success.

#2 — LOOK FOR EVIDENCE

Next, bring your attention to how others see you. An easy way to do this is to look for historical evidence.

Gather insights from past performance reviews. Review your LinkedIn recommendations or 360-degree feedback from clients, supervisors, team members or colleagues. What are the common themes?

Evaluate customer testimonials and results. What problems are you able to solve for your clients? What issues do people always seek out your advice on?

#3 – ASK THOSE WHO KNOW YOU BEST

Another approach is to get the views of those closest to you. Email 3-5 people who know you best and ask them this question: What are my top 3 strengths?

When identifying who to ask, aim to get a range of perspectives from people across different areas of your life. For example, a family member, close friend and work colleague.

Always go for someone who knows you well and a person you trust to give you honest, objective feedback.

Once you’ve gathered a list of your key strengths, look for recurring words and themes. Then, narrow it down to your top 3 strengths.

#4 — ASSESS YOUR SUPER-POWERS

A tool I highly recommend and mention in my signature guide is the CliftonStrengths assessment by Gallup. It’s one of the most robust self-assessment tools available to identify your strengths. And best of all, it’s backed up with plenty of data and years of research.

I first read the book ‘Now, Discover Your Strengths’ over 5 years ago and completed the accompanying ‘StrengthsFinder’ assessment to uncover my top 5 strengths.

The original book has since been updated and you can purchase the latest assessment from $50 USD. The report provides you with your top strengths, ranked in order and an overview of how to maximise and develop these in your professional role.

For a free option, check out this Myers-Briggs online assessment. This is a broader personality assessment tool which includes common strengths for your MBTI personality type.

It’s by no means as rigorous or evidence-based as StrengthsFinder — so as always, take what lands and leave the rest!

WHAT TO DO NEXT…

“You will excel only by maximising your strengths, never by fixing your weaknesses.” — Marcus Buckingham

You’re clear on your strengths. But what do you do next?

Start by honouring your strengths at work. Delegate, automate or eliminate anything outside your zone of genius. Then, invest in developing your strengths — rather than trying to improve your weaknesses.

Finally, highlight your strengths in your marketing and personal branding.

On an individual level, share your unique strengths in your LinkedIn profile, thought leadership and value proposition — when communicating what you do and the benefits of your services to potential clients or employers.

In your business, use your strengths to highlight your point of difference in your messaging, marketing and processes. This includes your website About page, entire website, any content or social posts you produce.

These tips have helped my clients and I to uncover and articulate our super-powers and develop our strengths at work. I hope they support you too!

Want help to clarify your unique strengths and find the work that lights you up? Book your free initial 30 minute consult HERE to get started!

Stacey Back is a Career Strategist, Leadership Coach + Founder of Profile Careers. She helps high-achieving corporate leaders and business owners at a mid-career crossroads find the work that lights them up, increase their income, impact and create a career + life on their terms.

Stacey also supports professionals to transition from their corporate job into their own consulting business. She works virtually with individuals based across the globe.