Marketing guru, Seth Godin: a new platform for “I am” and “I know” skills

Godin, blogger and thought leader among personal and permission marketers, has re-framed the thinking of Richard Bolles, author and esteemed guru of career and life coaches. 

I'm always looking for a topic that might add real value to the career space, so I was grateful to a friend who sent me Seth Godin's recent post, What are you good at?    Taking a marketing perspective, Seth appropriately suggests that those looking for their next big gig" should consider the distinction between skills that can be categorized as "content" and "process."

Godin uses 21st Century terminology to make his point:  "Content is domain knowledge. People you know or skills you've
developed… Domain knowledge is important, but it's (often) easily learnable."
  While Bolles' terms may not resonate with Millennials, his discussion of this topic is as relevant today as it was in 1980, when the Quick Job Hunting Map was first published.  Bolles describes skills residing in the content domain as "I know skills" ,e.g."I know how to use SAP, "I know financial accounting," "I know movers and shakers in the logistics field."

Godin  uses the term "process" to describe "emotional intelligence" – what Bolles would call "I am skills."  When explaining process skills, a speaker is likely to start a sentence with "I am able to manage multiple projects," "I am persuasive," "I am adaptable," etc.  These are the skills, abilities, and personal qualities that can differentiate a candidate from the many others who share their credentials and knowledge skills.  As Godin says, the process "…stuff is insanely valuable and hard to learn." And I agree that these personal qualities are likely to be overlooked by screeners and scanners. All the more reason to dig-deep and seize control of your personal marketing campaign – to manage your career.

An infinite number of people share the same content domain, but precious few offer the same mix of process skills and personal qualities. Long-term career health, preceded by successful assessment, preparation of marketing documents, interview preparation, and offer negotiation, is dependent upon your understanding of these ideas.