Identifying your key strengths
By Gemma Raw
Being a substance misuse worker requires a wide range of social, interpersonal and professional skills. You’ll be responsible for helping clients access a wide range of services, and any substance misuse professional will know that no day is ever the same. As such, you’ll be used to working across so many different areas that you’ll naturally pick up a wide ranging skill set. So when you are next thinking about moving into a new substance misuse role, how can you ensure that you’re presenting your best skills? We all have strengths and weaknesses but are you confident that you know the areas in which you excel? Unfortunately, you can’t be great at everything, but what is important is knowing your strong points and then playing to them, as an individual, and a team player. Here are ways you can identify what you’re good at, and how you can showcase these attributes on your CV and during any subsequent interviews.
Know what you are good at
Knowing what you are good at when seeking a substance misuse worker role is crucial, so as you are able to properly sell yourself to a potential employer…and then prove them right when they hire you. For instance, as a substance misuse professional you’ll need to demonstrate your problem solving abilities. You’ll be used to working in difficult situations, so why not explain how you’ve identified a situation and what you did to resolve the problem. If you can demonstrate any key outcomes which would show your strengths (whilst maintaining client confidentiality) then you’ll naturally boost your job prospects. Perhaps you’re a superb advocate for your clients – if so, try to demonstrate how you’ve enabled clients to access housing or employment services. The important thing to remember is that if you mention something on your CV, you need to be able to talk confidently about the same subject if you are selected for an interview.
Perform a SWOT analysis
A tried and tested way of analysing your abilities it to perform what is known as a SWOT analysis – highlighting Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats – on yourself. Look at what you are good at and not so good at, focus on them, hone them and then highlight them in your CV and at subsequent interviews.
Think about your background expertise
Working with substance misuse clients is a role where you need to combine professional and good inter-personal skills to enable you to respond effectively to a range of scenarios. Those who become successful substance misuse workers often come from a variety of backgrounds, such as nursing, criminal justice, social care, youth work or counselling.
Be realistic and honest with yourself
Be realistic with your weaknesses as you will only identify and tackle them if you are honest in your assessment of yourself. Look around and see opportunities you can take advantage of to showcase your skills but also be aware of the Threats that are the factors you can’t control but may impact on your progress. Work to minimise them. We all have strengths and weaknesses, but once we know what they are we can truly identify what we are good at, what we need to work on, and place ourselves in a stronger position to secure a new job.
If you need advice or guidance on how to successfully demonstrate your strengths in your CV or during an interview, why not take a few moments to speak with one of our consultants? We’ll work with you to establish how you can sell yourself in the most effective way possible, helping you to get your ideal substance misuse worker job role.