Experience is the thing of supreme value.
-Henry Ford

Your experience makes you money. The more experience that you have, the more salary that you can command. Life is not all about money though. Your experience also gives you a chance to build lifelong friendships and have more satisfaction in your life and career. The value of your experience falls into one of three areas. Use these to determine if you have $1s and $5s or $20s and $100s.

How have you delivered?

The first thing that a hiring leader or recruiter is going to look at is your ability to deliver. Do you make things happen? What has been your impact on results, the people you worked with and the company as a whole?
Evaluate the value of your delivery by assessing a few different areas:

  • What you have accomplished: What you really did….not what your responsibilities were. This is why I highly recommend putting accomplishments on your resumes instead of just your job role. People want to see what you were able to do. They want to see the impact of your work. 
  • What you have fixed/made better: Did you leave the last place better than you found it? It’s one of our values here at Passing the Baton. You always want to leave whatever you participate in better than you found it. If you are out camping with cub scouts, leave the campsite better and less disturbed than when you arrived. If you are leaving to become a CEO somewhere, the company should be in a better position than when you arrived.  Think through and write out what you have fixed and made better during your journey. This is one of the key story types from our Be the Storyteller episode. (PTB leadership podcast #124)
  • What problems you solved: We have covered problem-solving extensively at Passing the Baton and I’m sure that we are not done yet. It’s an essential skill that all good leaders must have. It’s good to write these down to catalog so that you don’t forget them. I have a tendency to solve an issue and move on quickly, and as a result, I sometimes forget the mass of problems that I’ve fixed over time. I’ll stop every so often and catalog those in written form so they aren’t lost forever. A better practice would be to capture them weekly. Bosses, recruiters, and organizations love a good problem solver. Everyone’s got problems that need to be fixed. 

What do you have to offer?

What do you bring to the table? Many of your technical and leadership skills will fall into the category above. Hiring leaders are increasingly looking at your potential as they make hiring decisions. I recently worked with an organization that was trying to measure potential in assessments, surveys and feedback forms. If you scored high in potential, then you would get extra development opportunities. If you scored low you did not. Fairness aside, it shows that people care as much about what you can do as they do about what you are doing now.  Here are some areas to consider in strengthening to show the value of your potential. 

  • Emotional intelligence
  • Coachability
  • Continual learner
  • Integrity and values
  • Brand representative

Do you manage your career?

We talked a few months ago about owning your personal development. (PTB Episode #164: How to own your personal development). Leaders value others that have a plan for themselves and don’t simply rely on circumstance, longevity, and luck to get them further in their career. 

Leaders are looking for behaviors as they evaluate your value and experience. Do you exhibit behaviors of continued success, perseverance, and planning? Do you have an intentional journey or one that is more happenstance or accidental? 

Be intentional in gaining the experience needed to get to your next career goal and don’t expect it to just come to you. We’ll cover ways to do that over the next two weeks. 

Evaluate yourself to know the true value of your experience. From there, you can assess your areas to grow and strengthen. Remember that you are growing your earning potential as you grow your experience. 

Make a better tomorrow. 
-ZH