Would you attend a training course taught by someone with no experience on the subject matter? Would you make a repeat purchase from a sales professional who had previously let you down? Or, would you go “above and beyond” for a co-worker or friend who didn’t routinely keep their word? Most likely, the answer is “no” to all of these questions. The same is true for employers looking for top tier talent – they want to be sure that the prospective candidate is competent and credible – before investing the company’s time and resources to bring them on board. So, what are the “3 Cs”? And, why are they key to your long term professional success?
More importantly… do you possess them?
Competence: Competence indicates sufficiency of knowledge (and skill) that enable you to act effectively in a wide variety of jobs and situations – the “must haves” required to embark on a career in your desired industry. Next to your character, your level of competence will be the single most important factor in, not only obtaining your desired position, but determining the long term success of your career. In addition, best employer practice is to retain an employee in one position long enough to demonstrate their competence, before making any promotions to a higher position. It is important to note that attributes such as self motivation, integrity, willingness to learn and creativity are highly favored by employers, and add to your overall level of competency.
Credibility: The root of the word “credibility” is “credo,” which means “I believe” in Latin. Put simply, credibility is the feeling of trust and respect that you inspire in others. No single thing creates credibility. Rather, a combination of things must be in place for you to establish it. Your credibility is the sum total of your reputation and character combined, and the single most important quality about you when the time comes to request recommendations and referrals. Make sure that what you do (and say) are consistent with the highest in ethical standards, and display excellence in terms of your personal behavior and professional conduct. Spend time getting to know yourself and what you care about most, and be willing to defend your values and choices – and if you make a mistake – own up to it immediately and do whatever it takes to correct it.
Contacts: The more connected you are in the marketplace, or your respective industry, the more likely it is you will find the position you are seeking. The more people you know, and who know you, the more likely it is you will be exposed to job openings that may not be listed elsewhere – that is why it is critical for you to network continually. And, do not hesitate to ask for referrals and references, and tell your friends, relatives, and associates that you are in the market for a new job. Nothing is more important than your circle of contacts, as a great majority of jobs are obtained because someone knows someone. You can expand your range of contacts just by telling people that you are available, and by asking if they have additional advise that might help you in your employment seeking journey.
Remember, people will only recommend you for a job opening if they are confident that they will not regret it in the long run.
In the final analysis, it is how competent you are currently and how credible you have been in your previous positions that will determine, more than anything else, how successful you will be at the position under consideration.
Above all – be good at what you do and remain credible!
Best of luck!