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When Opportunity Knocks, Be Ready!

March 29th, 2019

By: Karen Colligan


Imagine this. You've been in the same role and company for some time now. You're ready to move on, but haven't been able to get started looking for a new opportunity. A friend invites you to a networking event and introduces you to a senior leader from a company that you've always wanted to get into. Turns out they're searching for someone with the skills and experience you know you possess.





You chat. She asks, "What would you say are your two greatest accomplishments?"





How do you respond?





Would something quickly come to mind? Would you be able to easily describe your accomplishments in a way that is clear, concise and compelling? Or would you hem and haw while searching your mental database and then say the first thing that pops up? Or, worse, would you simply panic and head for the bar?





My point is, you never know when an opportunity is going to present itself, so you need to be prepared.





In my last blog, Leadership and Learning - An Essential Combination, I talked about keeping your competencies relevant and up to date and continuing to learn. It's also important to periodically pause and take stock of your accomplishments. Write them down. Prioritize them. Categorize them - tie them to relevant competencies so you can use them as specific examples that demonstrate the competency. Having this information in mind and/or easily accessible will help you in situations like the scenario above and in performance conversations, your resume or bio, or other situations where you need to share who you are.





Here's a simple template you can use to capture your accomplishments. Use the Situation-Action-Result (SAR) format to describe the accomplishment and then define the competencies associated with it.





SITUATION: What was the goal or challenge?





ACTION: What was your role? What did you do to address the goal or challenge?





RESULT: What was the result (your accomplishment)?





What COMPETENCIES did you use?





When opportunity comes knocking, be ready to open the door!





Till next time,





Karen


Career planning, Leadership, leadership development, Personal development

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