S is for Using Your Strengths To Help A Potential Employer Achieve Success

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There are many ways to prepare for an interview with a potential employer.

One approach is to focus on the results an employer wants delivered in a particular role. It is then to clarify and communicate how you can deliver these results.

Another approach is to clarify how you want to use your strengths to help a potential employer achieve success. Sometimes this method is more suited if there is a general job description or maybe when a role has not even been advertised.

Many people have successfully adapted this approach. This involves doing both the Inner Work and Outer Work before going for an interview.

The Inner Work

This involves looking within yourself. It calls for clarifying your strengths, your successful style of working and the kinds of work you find satisfying.

The Outer Work

This involves looking outside yourself. It calls for clarifying the characteristics of your perfect employer and the challenges they face. It also involves clarifying how you can use your strengths to help them to achieve success.

The next step is to meet with the potential employer. It is vital to show you understand the world from their point of view. You can then position what you offer in a way that shows how you want to contribute to achieving their picture of success.

Imagine you are going for a potential role with an employer. You obviously need to understand the mandatory things that must be delivered by somebody in that role.

On the other hand, many job descriptions are historical. Some simply list a catalogue of skills that have been taken from old competency models.

As a potential contributor, you can show how you can deliver specific results to the employer. Remember:

People buy success. They don’t buy the theory of success.

The exercise below invites you to clarify the success you can deliver. It invites you to focus on the following themes.


Describe what you believe to be the goals – the picture of success – of the organisation, the team or employer you want to join. This may be difficult, because you are not privy to lots of information. But focus on what you believe may be the goals.

Bear in mind that most employers want to improve their Profits or Performance, their Products – in the widest sense – and their People.

Great workers gear their strengths towards helping their employer to achieve their picture of success. So it is good to put some the effort into clarifying these aims.

Specific Contribution

Bearing in mind the organisation’s goals and your strengths, describe the specific contribution you would like to make towards helping the employer to achieve the picture of success. Bring this to life by giving specific examples.

Specific Benefits

Describe the benefits of making this contribution. These can be benefits for the organisation, customers and colleagues. Again, try to give specific examples.


Finally there is a space to summarise the contribution you would like to make. Also add any other things that you would like to mention.

Bear in mind that leaders often worry. so it may be worthwhile mentioning: a) The specific things you will be do to proactively keep them informed; b) The specific early successes you will aim to deliver.

Here are the topics you might like to share when meeting the employer. You will, of course, use your own wording and share these in your own way.

The exercise is challenging. But it can help you to clarify your potential best contribution to an employer.

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