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Find, Create, Market, Live your Unique Selection Proposition - USP

Updated on January 5, 2011

What is Unique Selection Propostion

Unique Selection Proposition is a term I coined (as far as I could check on the web) to define an individual's special qualities that make him/her THE candidate for a job/position.

It is a simple take on USP - Unique Selling Proposition.

from wikipedia

The Unique Selling Proposition (also Unique Selling Point) is a marketing concept that was first proposed as a theory to explain a pattern among successful advertising campaigns of the early 1940s. It states that such campaigns made unique propositions to the customer and that this convinced them to switch brands. The term was invented by Rosser Reeves of Ted Bates & Company. Today the term is used in other fields or just casually to refer to any aspect of an object that differentiates it from similar objects.

How To Develop Your USP?

Your Unique Selection Proposition will be developed by thinking about the following:

1. Who is your target market?

you are selling yourself. You have to speak to your audience.

for more tips on how to sell yourself, see

you are either selling to the recruiter or the company.

the recruiter wants to know that you are what the client wants.

the company wants to know that you are what they need.

its not about you, its about them.

2. What is it that you can do well, really well.

I Ideate. I have the ability to look at varied information and put it together into some coherent form for the people who want that information. therefore, I say, my USP is Ideation.

your USP should be something that not only you can do well, but can be relatively sure will continue to do well for sometime to come.

the trick now or the solution, is to find something the common element in the two lists that you created above.

whatever is common to what your audience wants & what you can do well, is your Unique Selection Proposition

How Strong Is Your Selection Proposition?

this is based on Porter generic strategies

You can be a leader in one of the following or find a unique mixture of the three.

1. Cost Leader - You are complete value for money material. your cost-to-company is lower than anyone with your skills, experience and exposure.

2. Different - you are different, period. there is no one else who can do what you do. there is no one else who has your skills. there is no one else who has your education, knowledge etc.

3. Focus Leader - you are a super specialist. you only do one/two things, but you do them the best in the world. you are not a super manager, but a super-super new-product launch manager. this could also be product, industry, location, type of markets, customer segments etc.

How do you check that your proposition is the strongest?

- internet job sites.

publish a job that ideally you would be best suited for and see the responses.

- use your networks (linkedin etc) to determine who else is out there,claiming just what you are.

- talk to professional recruiters and career managers

maybe you aren't there yet. maybe over the next few years you can develop your USP

It Should Answer the Q : Why Should I Hire You?

According to wikipedia, An interview is a conversation between two or more people (the interviewer and the interviewee) where questions are asked by the interviewer to obtain information from the interviewee.

This is my definition of an Interview

A process to determine whether the interviewee will be able to do what is required.

Your Unique Selection Proposition is a sentence or phrase that explains what makes you special.

Out of all the people who applied for the position, why you?

Before you answer that, here is something that is critical, Answer this question from the employer's perspective, not yours'

This is where empathy comes into play.

The company has a problem, a pain point, how will your hiring make that pain go away?

what is it that the company/employer needs that you, and only you can provide.

How to Market your USP

so you have created your Unique Selection Proposition.

Now its time to market it.

1. Resume

Make it a part of your objective.

Most resume objectives are not used to their full potential.

to see how best to use your objective on a resume, visit

2. Hobbies & Interests

Develop your hobbies & interests around your USP.

this will give you the extra depth.

3. Make it a tag line

Use it everywhere. your linkedin profile, your blog, your email footer, your facebook profile, everywhere.

4. Participate in Online Discussions related to your USP

linkedin has a very robust & active Q&A section.

Answer questions related to your USP to establish your knowledge and your credentials in the community.

5. Blog

create your own blog/website and write stuff that makes your USP stick in the readers mind.

Also, comment on other blogs that offer similar reading material.

Living your Unique Selection Proposition

All the above is useless if your do not: 

A. Have a genuine USP

B. Do not Live it.

You may get selected on faff, but really, you will be found out sooner than later.

How to live it?

- work hard to become very very good at it.

- find a mentor, who knows and appreciates your USP

- read/learn/share with other people

- make positive changes happen because of your USP

Offer to Readers

If you leave the following in the comments:

1.your desired position

2. your industry

3. your current USP or 'what-you-think-you-are-good-at'

I will assist you to sharpen it!

Happy Selection!


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    • prabhjotbedi profile image

      Prabhjot Bedi 8 years ago from chandigarh

      Dear Puneet,

      Operation is too broad. Almost everyone in the industry would have this has their forte.

      lets try and define it using categories:

      1. You can use Hotel Classification

      2. Location

      3. Age of operations (new, young, mature)

      4. type of operation (owner, management contracts, franchise)

      5. markets (business, leisure, MICE) etc

      Choose these to frame your expertise.

      All the best!

    • profile image

      puneet bhasin 8 years ago

      working as GM with Cross Roads hotels in Delhi/gurgaon.

      Operations is essentially i am very good at.please help