Jack Lowman, founder of Hack Yourself, shares a free excerpt from his new book, Hack Yourself.
I'm about to ask you a question that you will find very difficult to answer.
Before we begin, it's important to know that tough questions are tough because they are important. They shine a light on issues that deserve time and thought.
If you are trying very hard and achieving very little in your career, here's the question you must ask yourself:
What's the one thing you do at work that adds the most value?
You may want to read the question again to ensure it's rattling the right parts of your brain.
If your answer is generic, such as "being a nice person", it's not necessarily unique enough to add the value that can make a real difference.
Once you identify your "one thing", consider what the issue or problem is that needs solving at your organisation. By knowing this, you can start to work out how you apply your value to maximum effect.
You may find that your strengths aren't meeting a need or getting noticed at your organisation. If so, you have opportunities at hand. You can get better at what you do, refocus your efforts where you can make a bigger difference, or build better relationships to get you noticed.
Here are some more questions to answer. Remember, if you find them difficult to answer it's likely they are important - so persevere.
- What's the one thing people would miss if you stopped doing it?
- What's the one thing that you do that others can't?
- What's the one thing you want to be remembered for?
The answers to these questions are your unique footprint on the world you are trying to influence, so give them the attention they deserve.
Too many of us are looking for people to hand us the answers to our career dilemmas.
The answers, however, are already inside us. We just need to bring them to life.
You can hear more from Jack and his business partner Mark Harris by attending his one-day Innovate You - become a modern marketing leader course at the IDM in London on 2ndFebruary.
Read more about Hack Yourself.