What do you do really well? In what capacities do you perform like a rock-star? What have you experienced in your professional life that gives you super powers no one else could possibly replicate? These are some of the questions I like to ask people to get an idea of how much value they are leaving on the table. And how much value a person is leaving on the table is almost directly correlated to how uncomfortable they are in their current role.
Most people, when confronted with these questions, look at me like a deer in the headlights. They often start regurgitating some painfully boring job description or spout off some soup-du-jour buzzwords that they think someone else thinks is meaningful. Only, when pressed to identify their own uniqueness beyond those production line definitions, they have no idea.
So many people in the working world believe they have more to give. They feel down in their stomach that they can have a bigger impact, a more lasting effect on the world, and create value that far surpasses what they are currently receiving right now. But they don’t know, or aren’t comfortable talking about, those things that they are awesome at.
The more clear a person is about what they do well, what they provide that will blow the socks off of their clients, the knowledge, skills, abilities, passions and purpose that make them unique and provides boatloads of benefit to other people, the better they will be position to actually realize their value in the marketplace. (that’s code for making money, among other things)
That feeling of unease doesn’t go away with a new job, a new position, or even a new salary, it only seems like it momentarily. The discomfort that comes with being under-valued, under-utilized, and, let’s face it, under-paid have almost no chance of going away if the person doesn’t know, in detail, what particular blend of magic it is that only they can create.
Knowing what you do well will give you the confidence to step into things others avoid. Knowing where you are a rock-star helps you identify opportunities others will miss. And fully embracing your superpowers can provide motivation to see things through where others would stop.
How much value you are leaving on the table might just surprise you. But, if you don’t seek to understand the potential of your unique value, that discomfort should be no surprise at all.