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How to change the competency gap trap

Do you feel like you aren’t experienced enough? Do you lack the right competences to move forward in your career?

Well you might need to simply take a step back and embrace being a novice. As a coach, we are encouraged to stay in the not knowing, dance in the moment and listen actively. Not offer solutions to the client’s problem(s). This is quite refreshing but can also be a challenge. Especially if you are used to being seen as an expert. 

But maybe we ALL need to wear this hat when we are feeling outside our knowledge comfort zone. And be open to the fact that everyone in the team / round the table, has something to offer. Regardless of their experience.

Apparently the know-it-all state dulls creativity and deadens curiosity. The quote by Suzuki (1970) in Zen Mind, Beginners Mind sums it up nicely:

‘If the mind is empty, it is always ready for anything. In the beginner’s mind, there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind, there are few.’

Focus on your soft skills

Creativity and curiosity are just two of many soft skills which are super important at work. So take time to identify yours and see how you can use your natural gifts to move forward. Effortlessly. Embrace the growth mindset and get used to being outside your comfort zone when faced with a new situation. This is when real learning occurs. 

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

Karin Weiser

Karin Weiser

International Business Coach (ICF-ACC) and Writer

Transition Specialist who supports ambitious professionals in transition in their career and life with conversations that matter. I help ambitious professionals to write the next chapter of their career story. To own it, walk it and talk it. I have rewritten my story many times - moved countries, climbed the corporate ladder, zigzagged in my career. I stand for diversity, well-being and lifelong learning. In 2019 I took a life leap to self-employment. Proud to be a Psychologies Ambassador and ICF Barefoot certified coach (ACC). My WHY is to have a positive impact on people - in person, virtually and through words. British by birth, global by choice - I'm based in Copenhagen and work globally. My personal recipe for a balanced life includes a splash of optimism, yoga and dark chocolate.

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