Career Key

Author: Career Key's President and CEO, Juliet Wehr Jones, GCDF, J.D.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

4 Ways to Use Job Skills to Reach Your Chosen Career

Looking for a list of job skills needed to reach your chosen career? Are you properly using those skills to position and market yourself? What gaps do you need to fill? Start with the 17 Foundation Job Skills list found on our website. Here are 4 ways to use these Foundation Skills to get your chosen career and job:
  • Evaluate the skills you have and those you lack. Look at our list and see what you've got; you'll probably be pleasantly surprised.
  • For skills you lack, decide which ones are necessary for your career or job choice. While some skills may be obviously required, information interviewing (talking with someone who works in that job or career) will likely provide others you hadn't thought of. Use other ways to narrow down your list by learning more about the careers and jobs that interest you.
  • Acquire the necessary skills, either through education, internship or volunteer experience. If you're not sure how, find out through your research about the career path. Be creative. If your prospective job wants you to have lab experience and you've never worked in a lab, look for a part-time volunteer job that allows you time to do paying work while you get your experience.
  • Clearly communicate your skills to your prospective employer. Make sure your resume showcases the skills you have. Practice answering interview questions in a way that describes how you've used your skills. And yes, do it in front of a mirror or someone who can critique you. As hokey as it sounds, it works.
Remember that you're a free agent in the workplace. You are your skills and the more you have that are transferable between employers and occupations, the better off you'll be - both in career and salary options.

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