Why Doesn’t Your Good Work Speak for Itself?

“Why doesn’t my good work speak for itself?” asks a self-described shy, reserved reader of Joyce Lain Kennedy‘s nationally syndicated “Careers Now” column in the Los Angeles Times. “If you don’t say good things about yourself, who will?” replies Kennedy.

In a recent Interview Skills for Introverts workshop I taught at New York University, it struck me how hard it was for most of the participants to articulate their strengths and accomplishments. It takes an extra effort for many of us introverts.

However, it’s well worth the effort to spend some concentrated time thinking about how you’ve made a difference to the organizations where you’ve worked. It might also be helpful to ask your past and present bosses, colleagues, and clients for their input. Then distill the input, write it down, and practice talking about your accomplishments.

Of course, others might say good things about you too. “Others can carry your praise packs in the workplace,” says Kennedy. “People who know the richness of your skills, competencies and character can write glowing references for a new job or whisper in the boss’s ear when job-saves or promotions are handed out.”

Kennedy refers to my book, Self-Promotion for Introverts®, which also stresses the importance of tapping into your strengths as an introvert rather than trying to be something you’re not. Don’t miss her answers to two other readers’ questions too—one about jobs that aren’t coming back and another about pocket-money ideas.


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