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The Deep Well of What

20 July 2022

The Deep Well of What is something people fall into when writing job applications.  It sounds like this:

I have done this...
And I have done this....
And I have done this....
And I have done this...
In writing a job application that sounds like this you rely on WHAT you have done (i.e. your experience) as the only aspect to sell you.  In just one or two pages of job application writing these statements can sound a lot like 'motherhood' statements.

The problem is that most other applicants have probably done the same sorts of WHAT.

We have all worked alongside people doing the same sorts of things as us, but doing them poorly.  These individuals can make the same claims as you when describing WHAT they have done.  To differentiate yourself go beyond relying only on WHAT you have done and share HOW you did what you did.

HOW you approach doing what you do is where your true value is, and it is the HOW that the employer is really looking for.  In an application it looks like less, but better chosen examples, and using your resume to list more of the WHAT you have done:

I have done this, and this is HOW I did it...
And I have done this, and this is HOW I did it...
It is valuable to take some time to reflect on HOW you do what you do.  A way to do this is to take one WHAT at a time and make notes against the following questions:

What do I consider, ponder, question and reflect upon as I do this?
What do I think about before, during, and after doing this?
In what ways do I go above and beyond as I do this?
When I do this what things do others remark upon?
What small actions do I do as I do this that I don't see others do?
What unusual things do I plan for as I do this?
As I do this what things do I do that are unnecessary, but I do them anyway?
As I have become better at doing this, how have I changed how I approach it?

A lot of the time people don't really know HOW they do what they do - they simply do it.  Knowing HOW you do what you do is one of the ways you can stand out in your career, not just in interviews, but also in talking about your contribution.

As always, wishing you a flourishing career.




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