Careers & Coffee 15: What’s your one thing?

careers and coffee podcast

In this week’s episode of Careers & Coffee, Liz and Dan discuss finding your one thing, or your one superpower in the workplace.  I read a great book about this call The One Thing, by Gary Keller, and he even has an entire podcast and website dedicated to this over at

Searching for your next gig?  Head on over to Corridor Careers where we have over 450 local jobs available in Eastern Iowa!

Full Transcript:

Dan Holterhaus 0:00
Hey, good morning, Liz. Happy Friday.

Liz Kennedy 0:02
Happy Friday, got our coffee,

Dan Holterhaus 0:04
Got our coffee going

Liz Kennedy 0:08
Careers and coffee. Friday edition.

Dan Holterhaus 0:11
Gotta have the coffee when we’re when we’re talking about careers.

Liz Kennedy 0:18
And let me say our market is highly caffeinated when it comes to jobs right now.

Dan Holterhaus 0:24
Highly caffeinated, and more than enough job openings, right now what, uh, what’s going on quarter careers?

Liz Kennedy 0:30
Oh, my gosh, we have so many jobs, and so much variety of jobs. If you have been curious about, you know, if you’re currently happy in your, well, let’s see, let’s say you’re currently unhappy in your current job. There are so many jobs right now on Corridor Careers, and just in our market, in general, that you could probably find something in your career path right now. And, you know, have something to compare it to. A lot of times, you might be working in a role where you think, well, there’s no other jobs like this. So I’m kind of this is a good place for me to be

But if you’re interested in looking out. I’m not saying we want people who leave jobs that they’re happy in. just just just enough, a lot of opportunity out there. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today. Opportunity.

Dan Holterhaus 1:22
We’re going to talk about opportunity. And just to follow up on that 455 current active jobs as of right now, on Corridor Careers. But yeah, let’s let’s talk about opportunity. And let’s talk about, we’re kind of getting back to, before we started this Careers and Coffee episode talking about our our one thing – our superpower in the workforce, or just in life. So Liz, if I asked you, what was the one thing that you think that your hands down better at? or what have people maybe mentioned to you in the past that, hey, wow, you’re really good at this.

Liz Kennedy 2:02
So I would go with, what do I feel most confident in? Versus that because I’m really not comfortable with people giving me praise or hearing, you know, hearing about myself from other people. And that’s just my own issue.

But I feel most confident in my curiosity. And I would say curiosity is my superpower. I’m very curious about why things work, how things work. When I dig into things. That’s when I find things through my just analysis skills. And I learn things, I love to learn. And curiosity is what drives all of that. I’m just inherently curious. I’m like a cat. So that is probably my superpower. And I know it is a soft skill that many job, employers, sorry, recruiters and employers are looking for someone who’s curious because they know someone who’s curious is going to notice when things go south, or they’re going to notice opportunities. But I’m just kind of teasing what you think your superpower is Dan. So what do you what would you say your skill superpower is?

Dan Holterhaus 3:11
My skill superpower. So I’ve been told in the past that I’m really good at maybe finding gaps or opportunities. Whether that is you know, maybe there were problems, right? So in business and in work, like maybe that’s an opportunity to grow revenue, or, you know, find an opportunity to save money, right. So as far as business goes, like everybody’s every company is in business to try to make money and provide jobs and to serve people. Right? So as far as in the workforce, that’s at least what I’ve been told by some friends or mentors, like, hey, wow, I’d never never thought of that. That’d be a really good way to, you know, maybe add to the bottom line or, you know, increase sales. So

I think I’m always been kind of a problem solver. And maybe, maybe that’s my, my greatest strength. And my biggest weakness, too, that I see see problems maybe too frequently. But yeah, going back to you. So yeah, that curiosity is very interesting. And I would completely agree with what you said, because when I see you work, you are always really good at getting into like, maybe a CMS, like a content management system or a brand new platform, and you just had the whole thing figured out before, you know, it seems like in minutes, like where other people like myself, you know, weeks or months to figure out so.

Liz Kennedy 4:51
Well, thanks, Dan. You’re making me feel real uncomfortable right now.

Dan Holterhaus 4:56
That’s what we do. Yeah. here’s, here’s an example. Here’s an example.

Liz Kennedy 4:59
I think just had, you know, we’ve talked about this in the past on other podcasts, we both had tons of jobs. And I was thinking about restaurants and why I was working on a blog post of why restaurant work should be on everyone’s resume. And one of the one of the ways I used my curiosity in the past was I was working at a cafe that also had a bakery attached to it. And I noticed that the lemon bars looked off. And I’m like, these lemon bars do not look like yesterday’s lemon bars. And so I brought it to the attention of a manager who called over the pastry chef, and he’s like, Oh, yeah, those lemon bars are not right. And through that, I ended up transitioning over to the pastry department, because I noticed something that was critical to their quality, you know, like making sure that their quality was always the same, because they really relied on that reputation as providing like amazing desserts. And if somebody would come in, and they’d have a crappy lemon bar, they would tell everyone, they had a terrible lemon bar, and they wouldn’t go there and order it anymore. And so those are the types of things that you can do with those kind of like inherent skills that really don’t, they’re not something I don’t put, I mean, I might put curiosity on my resume and just like something about me, but it’s not like a skill that you put in the skill set at the top of your resume. And so you have to learn how to talk about some of those soft skills when you’re interviewing to let the recruiter know, hey, this is something about me, you should know. And this is why you should maybe consider me and this is what I can bring to the table. But if you don’t know that about yourself, it’s hard for you to tell that story.

Dan Holterhaus 6:43
Yeah, I love that. And I mean, just the fact that you saw, you know, saw the issue and brought it up, you know, I think there’s a lot of people that maybe, maybe and it depends on your work environment, or where your boss and management to like, you might not be comfortable bringing that up. But, you know, having, having the confidence and everything and curiosity to go and bring that up. And, you know, they moved you over they they really liked that about you just the just the fact that you stepped up and said something. So I think that’s something that, you know, a lot of lot of people can probably resonate with, that they’ve maybe seen an issue at work in the past or something. And you know, sometimes you say something, and sometimes you don’t. but I think that’s, that’s a really good trait.

Liz Kennedy 7:30
But yeah, it’s, I guess, it’s kind of the difference between that passive worker and someone who’s empowered as kind of like, got that ownership mindset of like, hey, this may not be my job, but I’m noticing that something about this could be improved, or there might be an opportunity here and heck, you know, like, if they listen to you, Danny, like, Hey, you could actually be making some revenue on this, then that’s obviously going to reflect well on you. If they do take that action. Or if they don’t take the action. Even if they don’t take the action to solve the problem. They they realize that you’ve brought it up and you’re paying attention. And that’s kind of what they’re looking for when they talk about employee engagement.

It’s a kind of a buzzword in, you know, when employers are talking about how can we improve our culture and employee engagement? What does engagement mean? It just means somebody who actually cares enough to, to say something when they see something?

Dan Holterhaus 8:26
Yeah, absolutely. All right, so couple things. Right. So take action. I love that you just mentioned that. Definitely. Don’t be afraid to take action and, and find out what your superpower is like, what’s your what’s your one thing that people are always praising you for? And, you know, don’t don’t be afraid to go after that and use that in the in the workplace.

Liz Kennedy 8:53
And if you’re looking for more ways to how to figure out what that one thing is about yourself. Dan’s gonna put in the show notes, a link to a book that you read about this.

Dan Holterhaus 9:02
And what was it it’s called the one thing the one thing by Gary Keller, who was the founder of Keller Keller Williams real estate, actually. Big brand, but yeah, really good book. So check that out.

Liz Kennedy 9:19
All right, well, that’s gonna be it for today, but we’ll be back next week with another Careers and Coffee.

Dan Holterhaus 9:25

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