Develop your strengths to stand out in the job market

Doing well, doing good'

Last year I was at the inspiring conference at IESE, 'Doing well, doing good' which has just taken place this weekend. This year I couldn't go, but I happened to be reading about Zainab Salbi. Zainab is the founder of a global organisation called 'Women for Women' which provides support, such a access to legal advise and health services and training including job skills, to women affected by war in eight countries. She has just published a book; 'If you knew me you would care' to present war from a woman's perspective. Both the author and the précis of the stories in her book were inspiring.

This reminded me of some amazing people I met at the IESE conference, who were clearly fired up by the work they were doing.

Finding your strengths and doing what you love

In my workshops I always talk about finding out your strengths and building on these. Sometimes I wonder whether students think this is just for the socially conscious brigade but it's not. From my recruiting days I can still remember some of the candidates I interviewed who were passionate about what they did, be it process improvement or crunching numbers. They stood out in the sea of candidates like a parrot fish in the ocean.

In a recent speech to students, Warren Buffett apparently said:

“I may have more money than you, but money doesn’t make the difference. If there is any difference between you and me, it may simply be that I get up and have a chance to do what I love to do, every day. If you learn anything from me, this is the best advice I can give you.”

Steve Jobs was pretty clear about this point too. In one of his famous speeches, he declared 'don't settle'. It can take time to discover what kind of work we are both good at and love to do. Many of the students I work with they are good at many things, and have never really considered tapping into what they love to do.

So what ever your objectives are, the next Warren Buffett or a future Gandhi, find out what you love to do. Your success and happiness may depend on it.