As you know, I got a new job.

Those of you who fol­low me on Face­book and Twit­ter are famil­iar with how much I have been gush­ing about work­ing here. I can’t help it. It’s a great place to work; I feel val­ued in ways I nev­er thought would ever be pos­si­ble (thanks to demor­al­iz­ing jobs I have had in the past), and I get to use my skills and tal­ents every sin­gle day.

The com­pa­ny is going through some restruc­tur­ing (actu­al restruc­tur­ing, not job cuts), and they are using this time as a way to look at who they are and where they want to go. They have hired a mar­ket­ing con­sul­tant from New York City, and she has been hear all wekk on a whirl­wind mis­sion to gath­er data and explore pas­sion among True­hop­ers.

I have had the oppor­tu­ni­ty to sit in on two meet­ings so far. One was an ini­tial meet­ing with the exec­u­tive on Mon­day explor­ing what defines us and who we are. The oth­er was today where we con­duct­ed sev­er­al exer­cis­es explor­ing our indi­vid­ual strengths.

The con­sul­tant had us fill out a 30-minute sur­vey that deter­mines what our 5 strengths are. Here are mine:

  • Input
  • Strate­gic
  • Com­mu­ni­ca­tion
  • Adapt­abil­i­ty
  • Con­nect­ed­ness

Some of these are sim­i­lar to the results of some career coun­selling I did about 6 years ago. What I found inter­est­ing this time around, how­ev­er, is that my new job is built to allow me to use these five strengths every sin­gle day. No one knew when I was hired that these were my five strengths. but it is great how it worked out.

Even more inter­est­ing is she had us each write down a strength for every per­son in the room. Here is what every­one else saw as strengths in me:

  • Effi­cient
  • Orga­nized
  • Effec­tive com­mu­ni­ca­tor
  • Great com­mu­ni­ca­tor
  • Fan­tas­tic sense of humour
  • Cre­ative thinker
  • Face­book posts
  • Calm, with vision
  • Very detailed
  • Focused
  • Cre­ative writ­ing
  • Grat­i­tude
  • Cre­ative
  • Very good with words
  • Very good with edu­cat­ing oth­ers
  • Tech­ni­cal achiev­er
  • Excel­lent eth­ic

I was sur­prised. Most­ly because I have been here only two months, and I didn’t think most peo­ple in the room had a chance to get to know me well or even see my strengths. It is inter­est­ing how it still man­ages to show through.

When I was fired from the uni­ver­si­ty almost two years ago, I used that as an oppor­tu­ni­ty to change how I brand­ed myself. It looks like it worked.

Nowhere in there is any­thing relat­ed to my 9 years in the IT sec­tor, which is pre­cise­ly how I want it. In fact, there is only 1 (maybe 2) strengths list­ed by oth­ers that even focus on my tech­ni­cal abil­i­ties.

It is so empow­er­ing to final­ly be rec­og­nized for my soft skills, my real strengths.

About Kim Siever

I am a copy­writer and copy­ed­i­tor. I blog on writ­ing tips most­ly, but I some­times throw in my thoughts about run­ning a small busi­ness.

Fol­low me on Twit­ter at @hotpepper.

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