Step 2 of my Essentials for Career Break Mums who want to go back to work with confidence is to Identify your Skills and Strengths.
When I work with clients, very often the career they had previously is NOT the career they want to return to. If you already have a good understanding of your values (see previous post), you can now overlay your key achievements and identify the skills and strengths you used in the course of those achievements.
However very often, these same clients have no idea of what it is that they want to do next. And having been submerged in motherhood for a year or more, somehow they have lost sight of their skills and strengths. Is that how you feel too?
How to identify your skills and strengths
Here are some ideas to help you identify your skills and strengths.
- Make a list of all your skills and strengths.
- Don’t think just about the skills that you acquired in your previous career. What new skills have you learnt as a parent? At first you might think none. Check out my post at Birds On The Blog for some suggestions.
- While you have been on a career break, what volunteering have you done? What new skills did you learn or existing skills did you enhance?
- Have you taken on other major projects recently e.g. relocation, house extension. On exploring this with a client in a one-to-one session, it turns out she had organised flexi-schooling for her son. However in order to achieve this, because neither the school, nor the council had experience or a policy, she set about researching the subject, then presented the case to the local council, the school management, the teachers and finally persuaded them to go ahead with this. She became an advocate for change and then worked with the authority to help them create a policy for future applications. That’s some achievement and I am sure that YOU can think of several skills that would have involved.
- Ask for feedback from friends and former work colleagues – what do they know you for, what are the skills you take for granted.
- What are the skills and strengths that are most important to you? Which ones do you really enjoy using? What comes easy to you?
- Consider which of your skills are transferrable from career or industry to another.
- If you are looking to change career, what are your skills gaps? What can you do about those?
- Finally look again at your list of skills and strengths. What’s missing? What else can you do? And what else?
When I work with clients individually and in my group programmes, I use DISC profiling which gives incredibly accurate insight into the type of person you are. Whether you like to work alone or as part of a team; whether you are big picture or focus on the detail; whether you communicate better in small groups or to large crowds. The DISC report gives clients insightful analysis that they might otherwise have been unaware of.
If you are a mum who’s taken a career break, and now you want to go back to paid work, identifying your skills and strengths is an absolute essential to get you started on your journey back to work. It’s never too soon to start planning. I work with ambitious women who happen to be mums to help them identify what’s most important to them and create the right action plan.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, or you’re feeling stuck and don’t know what to do, don’t stay that way – let’s have a conversation about what’s working, what’s not working and if that’s confidence related.
A simple conversation with me might be all you need. Book your free Career Confidence call today. I’ll help as much as I can in the conversation, and if you want to take it further we can talk about that too. No pressure. I promise.
I am here to support you every step of the way.