What makes you you?
What are you most proud of?
When you're in a job, what parts of it (or what assignments) excite you the most?
What would your friends say if I asked them what they like best about you?
Where have you simply killed it in the workplace? Saved the day? Achieved a major victory? Done the thing everyone else thought was going to be impossible?
What words best describe you?
What is your story? How did you get where you are today?
Where do you truly want to go next?
Do you know who you are, and what you really want?
What is your "so what?"
You need to know these things, because if you don't know them? Or if you know them and fail to communicate them to a would-be employer? You cannot possibly expect that they are going to invite you to come join them at their company.
Employers are looking for passion.
They are looking for authentic.
And they're looking for people who understand who they are, and exactly what they have to offer.
Wishy washy doesn't sell.
Uncertainty doesn't sell.
Fake blather that you think they want to hear doesn't sell.
Knowing yourself, and projecting your offerings in an authentic way sells.
One of the more unusual forms of resume input I've received was not a completed version of my standard questionnaire. It was not even a copy of an old resume. It was this .jpg file. A little note that this magnificent women had scrawled out as she considered what she's known for.
It's what got her started toward providing me with some incredibly useful input about who she is, and why a hiring manager should care.
Now, please don't think I'm suggesting that EVERYONE who hires me to craft a resume eschew the questionnaire in favor of photographed sticky notes (good grief, no), but I think this photo demonstrates my point rather well.
This is a woman who knows who she is, what she's known for and what characteristics she's going to bring to her next employer.
She is authentic.
She knows her "so what?"
And from this sticky note? We pulled together something that demonstrated that beautifully.
Know who you are. Communicate that.