One of my paramount fundamentals in working with clients is expressing their value.
It is not enough to tell people that you have a skill set, been in your industry x number of years or have a certain title – what matters is the value you bring.
Imagine two candidates both with similar experience and skill sets. Imagine having a meeting, whether it is a interview or client meeting and you ask them (or think of when reading their resume/LinkedIn/bio): “Tell me about working at XYZ Company.”
Candidate A responds: “I’m a manager there overseeing a team of five and work with clients in managing their financial assets.”
Candidate B responds: “I partner with, mentor and lead a team of five in bringing information, security and planning to our clients in all aspects of their finances from identifying their needs and goals, researching options, opportunities and challenges to strategically planning out short term and long term plans, goals and action steps. We then maintain constant communication within the team and with our clients to ensure we hit our marks and have earned a great reputation of success and trust which merited 65% of all our new clients are referrals from current clients.”
Candidate A basically told you their title, but nothing else.
Candidate B told not only told you they are a manager but gave you insight as to how they manage their people and their clients. They expressed their value: a mentor and team leader to their team; focused and dedicated to their clients and gave me some proof in the pudding.
Your value sets you apart from everyone else, it gets you noticed and bottom line – it gets you hired.
You need to answer the question of value before they ask. If Candidate A told me that I would pretty much be done with the conversation. They did not bring anything to the table enough to peak my interest to ask them more. Remember, you want my business or for me to hire you – it is your job to excite me about you as a candidate; not for me to dig it out of you.
If I was speaking to Candidate B I would definitely want to ask more. They sold themselves without being cocky or expecting me to be able to read between the lines.
It is the natural mindset of an interviewer – no matter a potential boss or client – to be skeptical. The example I give my clients is if you are in sales and state that you were second in the district the immediate internal thought by the potential boss/client is “what, out of three?”
They are bombarded with candidates and so many candidates misrepresent themselves that it is no wonder that the potentials are skeptical. They are overwhelmed. The last thing you want them to do is think, because they more than likely take it to a negative place. Sell your value not your title.
You might notice Candidate B’s answer is quite a bit longer without trying to infuse hot key words. Also, it would be very easy to assume Candidate A is a box checker and Candidate B is a leader. He/she didn’t say it – they demonstrated it.
There are two reasons why you do not communicate your value: either you don’t know how or you don’t add any.
No value: starting with a title and ending with duties.
Value: Start with the result of what you do and work backward. How do people benefit from what you do leads to how you do it. That is how you express your value.
If you are still struggling on how to identify and express your value I just happen to know someone that can help you with that… me!
Ok, shameless little plug, sorry.
Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW
Certified Professional Resume Writer
Career Polish, Inc.