ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What Unique Value Do You Add?

Updated on January 13, 2018
aesta1 profile image

Mary is an organizational development specialist and writes about today's challenges.

The Unique You

Watthan Model
Watthan Model | Source

What Are You Good At?

Like a good GP in medicine, it seemed to me that I'm not an expert in any one thing. But as a generalist with a great deal of experience, I am the perfect oxy-moron, an expert generalist! So, I began to ponder and maybe, I am an expert ponderer or even a dreamer.

I wanted something different as many of us often do. I pondered acting in a play, or singing that song everyone clicks at Youtube, or maybe a genius programmer, now working on the replacement for Facebook.

I pondered being an expert gardener, tango dancer, or a flute player. I am not any of that nor do I have any real targeted talent in those ways. At the end of the ponder came a big sigh. I am just an ordinary person living a somewhat unordinary life. Somehow, genius has passed me by.

Still, I am one of those who believe that each one of us has a special gift that defines our lives. This is the reason why we are here, unique and different from everyone else. The snowflake syndrome. So, I started to reflect on this aspect: what makes me different from the other 7 billion?

A New Kind of Expertise

A New Brand of Expertise: How Independent Consultants, Free Agents, and Interim Managers are Transforming the World of Work
A New Brand of Expertise: How Independent Consultants, Free Agents, and Interim Managers are Transforming the World of Work
My husband and I work as consultants. While it is a challenge at times, it is so much more fun and challenging as you stretch your mind and dig deep into your experience for options to bring up or ascertain the reach you can push the minds of many other bright people to handle tricky situations. Here's a book you can learn from. It tells us that any expertise can be leveraged in this new economy to respond to the concerns of today's organizations as they adapt to the new demands of today's world. Find out the changes going on the world of work and hone in your own talent to respond to this in a more meaningful and productive way.

What Do People Value in You?

Bird Expert
Bird Expert | Source

What Do People Appreciate in You?

My reflection led me to consider what people seem to appreciate in me. What makes them seem happier after some time with me. Perhaps, this is what I am good at. I seem to inspire trust, and more self-confidence in those I met. This includes trust in one's self, trust in others, trust that circumstances will usually lead to what is good. I seem to be good at making others believe that good can always come out of any person, event or situation.

Because of this, I often encourage people to be more than what they are; to reach for their potential, and to chase their dreams. In my former position of leading teachers and students in a large private school, I was always very good at pushing those around me to respond to challenges and aspire to be the best that they could be. This is probably the reason why I pursued a PhD in Organization Development because it occurred to me that I could help organizations and people within the organization to grow, adapt to change and evolve into a healthy and dynamic organism.

What services do you readily offer?

Tours | Source

What has been my own experience?

So I am an Organization Development Specialist. What do I do? What services do I offer?

Well, for a start, I help organizations identify where they want to be in a few years time. This includes identifying their vision, mission, goals and values. Then, we assess where they are at now, what their resources are and the steps they need to take to reach where they want to be.

Sometimes, what I do is assess how and why organizations get stuck and then we design interventions to get them out of that rut and start growing to become what they feel they need to be. Sometimes, organizations just want to ensure that they operate effectively so I assess the gaps in their internal processes and plan interventions needed.

In short, I do what is necessary to make organizations function more effectively in their terms and to build the confidence to really reach and stretch if that is needed.

I offer services that include assessment of strengths, needs and resources. Sometimes, we also try scenario planning. This helps organizations, companies or institutions see the future and scan for trends that might impact their own business or service. It can help them prepare for both short term and long term changes or mitigate the adverse effects of these events. (Think of Dell not understanding that notebooks and Smart phones were going to change their world!)

I also do change or transition management. No one likes change no matter what our rhetoric is. It requires new adjustment that takes us out of our comfort zone. But do we have a choice? None whatsoever unless you want to end up a relic.

In some cases, change can be drastic if they want to continue and not disappear. In this case, people within the organizations have to be helped to think through ways to implement sometimes massive change (IBM) with limited negative impact on current operation.

Here's the top expert on Organization Development - An Author I Recommend

The Daily Drucker: 366 Days of Insight and Motivation for Getting the Right Things Done
The Daily Drucker: 366 Days of Insight and Motivation for Getting the Right Things Done
Peter Drucker is the guru of organization development. His wisdom and experience in this area is worth reading. I think I have read all the books Drucker has ever penned. He is a guru as far as I am concerned in the area I have chosen. I also discovered that once in a while I need a boost to my day and a quote or two would often do that. I don't know what gives you a boost but I implore you to try this.

Here's a poll for you

Do you know well what makes you unique as a person?

See results

What Gifts and Skills Do You Add?

Some of the skills I employ are assessment, problem identification and solving, designing interventions, training, evaluation, visioning, scenario planning and management. But most of all I depend on the talent to build trust between myself and some VERY worried people who know change is coming down the tracks heading at them and need the self confidence to build a new track quickly.

Your Unique Value

Have you identified your unique value?

See results

Building Confidence to Manage and Direct change

Changing the Organization
Changing the Organization | Source

What do you focus on?

At present, I have focused my expertise on educational institutions where our company's day to day consulting experience has really centered. We enable education systems to respond to the shifting demands of modern economies, the needs expressed by increasing vocal students, and the often frustrating demands of completely unrealistic parents.

We help educational systems and institutions become more entrepreneurial, more linked to the demands of the real world, more able to support themselves and innovate programs that respond more to what employers are crying for . We work on policies that are more effective for education systems to pursue and implement so their citizens are able to survive and then compete in an economy and an international society that seems to have no border. With experience in over 60 countries, we really have a sense of how this all plays out.

We often become part of a team doing this work, contributing our particular expertise to the total work that needs to be done in re-tuning an education system. There are many consultants with specific expertise in finance, MIS, civil works, product, QA etc. But until a system or institution can really manage its fear of change and trust itself to explore and discover what's next, none of the specific changes will be even tried.

So, what I seem to be an expert in is building confidence in people that they can manage change and even direct it.

Bored Already?

I bet you are. I know I have just been talking about myself and I beg your indulgence. The key thing is all of us, each one of us has a unique gift and the world is not complete when we deprive it of its value.

© 2012 Mary Norton


Submit a Comment
  • pstraubie48 profile image

    Patricia Scott 

    15 months ago from North Central Florida

    So well stated. It is important for us to take stock of our value. I haven't done that in quite some time so after reading this I'm going to sit down and try to figure out what it is that others value in me. Thank you so much for being the reason that I begin to search. I hope all is well with you and yours. Stay well and safe. Many Angels are headed your way this afternoon. PS

  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    15 months ago from Ontario, Canada

    Thanks for the visit. You are right Marcy. We do have more to offer than we thought. Endless possibilities.

  • Marcy Bialeschki profile image

    Marcy Bialeschki 

    15 months ago from Cerro Gordo, IL

    I think it's interesting how others see my gift's differently than I do. It just goes to show, maybe we all have more to offer than we thought. Good read. Thanks for sharing.

  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    22 months ago from Ontario, Canada

    You are right Denise. You have so much to share and you're generous with your talents. I think of how much fun you add to those Seniors' lives as they paint away.

  • PAINTDRIPS profile image

    Denise McGill 

    22 months ago from Fresno CA

    This was fascinating. As an illustrator, I often just sit back and do art that I want to do and not utilize my time working on things that may advance me and get my work noticed. If I want to keep working I need to keep up with advancing me. Also, I think my greatest strength (after art) is encouraging others.



  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    Thanks Tim for the affirmation. I do try to improve myself now so I can be a better gift to others.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile image

    Tim Truzy 

    2 years ago from U.S.A.

    Hi, Mary,

    Reading this article gave me the sincere impression a skill you possess is the ability to use empathetic talents to help others find their way. You also are an effective communicator which comes through in your writing. Thanks for giving more insights into your profession and what you do.

    Informative. Educational. Thoughtfully written.



  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    Thank you so much. I have not written for sometime but will try again.

  • revmjm profile image

    Margaret Minnicks 

    2 years ago from Richmond, VA

    Mary, I loved reading your article. I voted in both of your polls and was part of the majority in each one.

    I am now following you and will continue to read your articles that are similar to this one.

  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    Peggy, you are so right. We will see.

  • Peggy W profile image

    Peggy Woods 

    3 years ago from Houston, Texas

    That was certainly a fun and lucrative way to spend some of your retirement years. Hopefully your health issues can be resolved to where you can once again travel.

  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    This year we just said no to contracts due to health issues but we did consulting for many years after retirement and it was really very satisfying.

  • Peggy W profile image

    Peggy Woods 

    3 years ago from Houston, Texas

    That explains all of your travels which I find to be very interesting. Nice that you can combine your expertise with seeing parts of the world that many of us will probably never get the chance to visit. It sounds as though your job is challenging but also very satisfying when you can see positive results stemming from your efforts.

  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    Thank you so much. Yes, I try to do good every day. I'm happy you know that early on in your life. It will help you much.

  • rdsparrowriter profile image

    Rochelle Ann De Zoysa 

    3 years ago from Moratuwa, Sri Lanka

    Hi I enjoyed reading your achievements and getting to know you through your article :) You are an interesting lady :) I know that I'm an assert to many people and my helping hands are always appreciated :) I know I'm a blessing :) Keep doing good and stay blessed :)

  • aesta1 profile imageAUTHOR

    Mary Norton 

    3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    Thank you, Li Jen. We are older than you are so have done more. Keep going and you'll even do better.

  • Li-Jen Hew profile image

    Li-Jen Hew 

    3 years ago

    Hi Mary, thanks for sharing. So I understand that you are work in organization development and you're also a consultant. Glad you are an expert ponderer. You can support yourself in many ways.

  • FlourishAnyway profile image


    3 years ago from USA

    I didn't get bored. I enjoyed that you knew yourself so well. So many people don't understand the value of their strengths and what they bring to the table.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)