How to identify and develop your personality strengths

How to find out your strengths

Many people are well aware of their weaknesses - shortcomings. Since childhood, they are first pointed out by parents if the child does not meet their expectations, then by teachers, friends or colleagues. Some even try to get rid of them - these shortcomings, they struggle with them, because they interfere with achieving goals and building relationships with people.

Constantly focusing on one's shortcomings and self-flagellation lead to low self-esteem and the emergence of various complexes and phobias.

People think much less often about their strengths and advantages. But in vain. It is difficult for a person who does not know his own strengths to love himself. Anyone who does not love himself cannot sincerely love others, and therefore live in harmony with himself and the world around him. “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” says God’s commandment.

And despite the fact that this commandment is as old as the world, self-love until recently was considered abnormal and condemned. A person who declared that he loved himself was treated with distrust, called an egoist, because for years he had developed the attitude “Loving yourself is bad!”

Psychologists say that it is bad not to love yourself, because a person who does not love himself is subconsciously determined that he is not worthy of a better life. He is content with what he has and does not strive to make any effort to develop and move forward.

“I am beautiful, I am strong, I am smart, I am kind. And I discovered all this myself,” said the famous Polish satirist philosopher Stanislaw Jerzy Lec.

Loving yourself does not mean not giving a damn about others and striving to grab more, even from someone else’s garden. Loving yourself means first of all valuing yourself. And to know your worth, you need to determine your strengths.

Strengths and weaknesses of a person

The strengths and weaknesses of a person are closely related and should not contradict each other. Each person has their own disadvantages and advantages. As a rule, we are used to talking about strengths, but we are often silent about weaknesses.

An independent, goal-oriented and self-critical person always recognizes that there are many weaknesses in his character. And there's nothing wrong with that. We are all humans. But every purposeful person can turn his shortcomings into advantages through painstaking work on himself.

So, what are a person's strengths and how to find them? To do this, first of all, pay attention to your talents and skills. This is where you will find your strengths. When you have found your advantages, pursue them and develop them. This will allow you to open up to your fullest potential.

If you cannot independently determine your strengths for the questionnaire, ask your acquaintances and friends for help. Thanks to their opinions, you may discover advantages in yourself that you were not aware of before. And in some ways your opinion will agree with the opinion of your friends.

In addition to the strengths on your resume, there is often a question about your weaknesses. There is no need to be ashamed of them. If you claim that you have no negative character traits, this will become a sign to the recruiter of an undeveloped personality. Which is unlikely to help you get the desired position in the future.

Table 1 - Strengths and weaknesses

Your strengths if you:Your weaknesses may include:
Results-orientedInability to remain silent in time
TenaciousExcessive emotionality
HardworkingLack of willpower
Strong-willed personalityShyness
ConfidentInability to speak in public
SociableExcessive irritability and aggressiveness
Organized and independent personInability to say “no”
You perceive information wellFormalism
Learn quicklyHyperactivity
Responsible for their own actions and the actions of their subordinatesFear of traveling by air and sea
DisciplinedInability to lie
Love your profession and workIntegrity
Active and energetic personLack of flexibility
Honest and don’t like to lieExcessive self-criticism
You have organizational skillsStraightforwardness
Have a creative mindLove for formalism
Are you a good performer?Self-love

Why use SWOT analysis

Identify your strengths

These are knowledge, abilities, skills, personality traits that distinguish you from others and give you an advantage. These are also resources and connections. Strengths need to be used, developed and improved.

Realize your weaknesses

These are ignorance, inability, gaps in skills. Toxic habits. Personal qualities that prevent you from achieving your goals. Usually in childhood we are taught that weaknesses need to be developed. No! We need to focus on the strong, and outsource and delegate tasks related to the weak.

Find profitable opportunities

External circumstances are constantly changing. To develop and move forward, systematically search and find promising opportunities.

Recognize threats

External circumstances bring not only opportunities, but also threats. SWOT analysis helps you think about how to avoid them or prepare as much as possible.

Exceptions to the rules

When applying for a job, indicate in your resume those strengths that will help you get the desired position. After all, some of your strengths for a certain position may turn out to be weaknesses that an applicant should not have.

Here are the most common examples. To get a manager position, you shouldn’t talk about your ability to sing. This is unlikely to help you get a job. But if you tell a hiring manager that you are a good cook, this will indicate your discipline, creativity, perseverance and accuracy. After all, to prepare a new dish you need to spend a lot of effort and time on choosing products and on the direct cooking process. In addition, a good cook is always creative in creating a new masterpiece, but always follows it exactly in accordance with the culinary recipe.

Below we will give several examples of what qualities must be specified when applying for a particular position.

Table 2 - Strengths and weaknesses by specialty: examples

StrengthsWeak sides
If you are applying for the position of accountant, then you:
AssiduousYou don't know how to lie
Attentive to detailsAlways straightforward
Honest and decent personModest
If you are applying for a leadership position, you:
ActiveA person with high demands
Goal orientedScrupulous
Have leadership qualitiesPedantic
Love to develop and learn new things
If you are an applicant for creative vacancies, you:
Have a creative mindHyperactive
You know how to work for resultsModest
You know how to soberly evaluate your workEmotional
If you are applying for a manager or office employee position, you:
SociableAre you afraid of flying?
Results-orientedYou don't know how to lie
Can you listen?Principled
Speak competently
You know how to find a way out of difficult situations
Attentive and polite
Have a creative mind

The table shows that not all positive aspects should be indicated in a resume, since some are simply not needed to obtain the desired position or can be “harmful.” For an employment application, we recommend that you select such weaknesses that will help characterize you as a responsible person and worthy of holding this position. The negative qualities of your character should help you perform the functions assigned to you.

Checklist: how to avoid common mistakes during SWOT analysis

  • Use facts, not opinions. Unsubstantiated speculation and personal impressions will not give a true picture
  • Give only objective assessments. If necessary, ask other people to evaluate you - loved ones, acquaintances, colleagues
  • Answer questions honestly. As in American films: “the whole truth and nothing but the truth.” Only honest answers will provide a foothold for a further breakthrough.
  • Don't change concepts . Don't confuse threats and weaknesses, as well as advantages and opportunities. Realize what you can actually control

What else should you pay attention to in your application or resume?

During the interview, we recommend that you also indicate “general” strengths.

  • Be sure to indicate in your resume that you always set goals for yourself and achieve them, that is, you are a goal-oriented person. At the same time, you show persistence and always follow the pre-drawn plan.
  • It is also worth pointing out that if unforeseen circumstances arise, you will be able to find a way out of the current situation - you have creative thinking.
  • Another important component of any successful applicant is self-confidence. This will characterize you as a confident person who is not afraid to take a step forward. You are not inclined to panic due to unforeseen circumstances; you are calm and confident in your abilities.
  • The ability to communicate with people is also very important. Let it be clients, colleagues, subordinates, suppliers. You just need to be able to find a “common language” with them, accept their point of view and correctly present your opinion.
  • Another positive character trait that must be indicated in the employment application is responsibility. Whatever position you apply for, you must always be responsible for your actions. Otherwise, you will become a burden to the company, which will ultimately lead to your termination.

Also, when applying for a new position, indicate that you are highly trainable. You can give examples from your past work or university practice. When you come to a new company, at first you will need to study: learn about the company, the features of its activities and learn how to fulfill your direct responsibilities.

An example of a SWOT analysis of an entrepreneur/manager

The analysis will help the entrepreneur and manager obtain a wide list of characteristics that he needs to develop.

Example of a SWOT analysis matrix:

S – Strengths:

  • I don’t lose my head in emergency situations when I need to make a decision quickly but carefully
  • I can negotiate anything with anyone
  • I know how and am not afraid to delegate

W - Weaknesses

  • Poor feedback from subordinates
  • Intemperance, I can yell at subordinates
  • I can't stand it when people criticize me
  • When someone argues with me, I get very angry
  • I can't admit mistakes

O – opportunities

  • I often go to conferences, where I make useful contacts and receive important information
  • There is an extensive list of connections in your field of business
  • I systematically read books on marketing and psychology

T – dangers

  • I don’t know how to fully rest, which is why I can “burn out”
  • I often make risky deals that lead to undesirable consequences.
  • I pay little attention to new technologies and innovation in the company

The completed matrix helps to see the whole picture of the personality. Find and realize areas of growth. Often the person who fills out the table is surprised at how accurate the portrait turned out.


Your greatest strength is your unique outlook on life and your unique worldview. Sometimes you are a genius at solving problems on the fly, and sometimes you have fun and joke around to relieve tension when those around you are getting too nervous. You know how to convince people and make them change their point of view.

Your biggest weakness is your inability to concentrate on anything for long. You have innovative ideas and are capable of achieving great things, but you quickly lose interest or become frustrated for no reason.

What is your ideal employer?

This question is asked in order to understand your “compatibility” with the company and its procedures and management style.

In this case, your idea of ​​an ideal employer should coincide as closely as possible with the description of the company where you are interviewing. To do this, you will need, again, to study the information available about it and reviews. What criteria does this include:

  • the need to work overtime;
  • type and frequency of reporting;
  • degree of freedom/control of employees when solving problems, etc.

That is, if the company is characterized by strict control, the answer “I want the manager to give me complete freedom of action” will not work.

If you cannot find out in any way what is customary in this company, then you will need to answer as neutrally as possible.

For example: “An ideal employer sets me clear goals and gives me feedback.”


You are an extraordinary and creative person, unlike others. Zigzag is chosen by people who think outside the box. Consistency, planning and systematicity are not your thing.

Love to experiment, go beyond limits, break rules and push the boundaries of what is permitted. In order to work productively, it is extremely important for you to maintain independence. If you are under total control from management, you will not achieve success in your work.

You are a born idealist. You often undeservedly attach different labels to the people around you. Afraid of losing freedom.

Did you like the test? Please leave a comment.

Man's face

Your greatest strength is the ability to be clear-headed even in difficult and crisis situations. Where most people would break down and lose their heads from fear, you will pull yourself together and cope with the problem. You are a very strong person, but of course you are not perfect.

Your main weakness is the desire to escape from your complex and difficult emotions. Being reserved and reserved is your coping tactic, it helps you focus during difficult times, but you carry these tactics into your everyday life. It is not easy for you to weaken your outer armor and open up to others about your feelings and experiences. You should get rid of the image of the "steadfast tin soldier" and be a living person.

Qualities that shouldn't be mentioned

There are things it's better not to talk about. If a potential employee reports that he is lazy, he is unlikely to be hired. When the position is high, a bad decision would be to talk about the fear of taking responsibility. Such a person blames others for all failures. You can’t rely on him or trust him with anything.

Other things best left unsaid:

  • commercialism and thoughts only about money, salary and promotion;
  • lack of punctuality;
  • addiction to romance novels, gossip, intrigue, etc.

But people who are really serious about finding a job will definitely not mention this. After all, their goal is to find a decent position with a good salary in a prestigious company.

Often, applicants do not talk about bad habits that they cannot give up. Subsequently, such employees take frequent smoking breaks. On holidays, they can drink during working hours and set their colleagues up for it. They are often distracted by phone calls and spread gossip. Some are initiators of conflicts.

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