A few weeks ago, Brazen Careerist Community Leader Ryan Paugh asked me to create a 30-second video about what I thought was the most important thing that could help an individual “rock their career.” Here it is:

The most important thing you can possibly do to have a great career is to know yourself. Research shows that the best leaders in the world don’t have anything in common, with the exception of this one thing — they’ve redefined “success” to mean “self-awareness.” The more we understand ourselves and apply that knowledge in a productive direction the more successful we will be.

But how do we find our area of strength? It boils down to discovering where these three things intersect:

  1. Talent
  2. Life Experience
  3. Passion

Talent is the naturally occurring patterns of behavior we each have, allowing us to effortlessly do some things excellently almost every time. The best way to uncover your innate talent is through an assessment like the Clifton StrengthsFinder™.

Life Experience is made up of the things you know, the skills you’ve gained, and the experiences you’ve had that make you, you. It is the cumulative image of all the formative events in your life, your family background, schooling, etc.

Passion is what makes you get out of bed in the morning. It’s whatever makes your heart beat a bit faster. It’s what you love. These are the things that, when you do them, they never feel like “work” — even if they’re part of your job.

There is also an element of personal Character that encircles all these components, determining whether we focus our unique abilities in a positive or negative way. The whole thing looks something like this:

(c) 2010 Josh Allan Dykstra

Feel free to post any questions below.

Also, don’t forget to stop by the terrific social community Brazen Careerist: the kind sponsors of the video above and a community of sincere individuals engaging in meaningful conversations about the world of work. Please consider this your official invitation to join if you’re not already a part!

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