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Have you given some thought to what your transferable skills are? You must consider them if you are really serious about changing your career.
If you're going in a new direction with a different job, you must be able to bridge the gap between lack of demonstrable experience or employment in your (new) chosen career.
Any lack of practical experience can be made up by having the right work related skills which are transferable to the new job.
The skills I'm talking about are the valuable skills that you have developed doing any job or other type of activity, whether paid or unpaid, professionally or as an outside interest, that can be applied to another job.
I explain what these transferable skills are further down this page, so keep reading.
All kinds of skills may be gained through all sorts of activities: your job, household projects, volunteer work, hobbies, involvement in sports, in fact anywhere where you have done something that could be applied to another role or job.
• Communication Skills – Verbal:
Being able to communicate by speaking in the right way for the audience.
This can include something like the capacity to make a point, communicate a specific message or present an argument with an awareness of audience reaction, and to respond appropriately to feedback.
Listening skills are also valued as being another dimension of communication as are negotiation, persuasion and influencing ability.
• Communication Skills – Written:
The ability to present arguments, make reports, summarize a document or situation in writing in a clear and focused manner, depending on the purpose of the text and its intended readers.
The intellectual level of the audience is also a factor.
• Interpersonal and Social Skills:
This includes relating well to others and building up good working relationships.
The capacity to establish good working relationships with customers, clients, colleagues and others such as suppliers is seen as of utmost importance in all work roles, for effective performance within the organization and competent representation of the organization with its clients. Analyze your transferable skills carefully as the ability to negotiate is also seen as especially useful.
• Organizing Skills:
Examples of this are: planning ahead; meeting deadlines; managing yourself and others; establishing priorities and coordinating people; organizing activities such as events of all kinds; whether work-related; social; fund-raising and so on
• Problem Analysis and Solution:
Problem Solving Skills – thinking things through in a logical or creative way to work out the most important problems; E.g. clarity and logic of thought in defining and solving complex problems; capacity to identify key issues and reconcile conflict; ingenuity in the creation of solutions; effectiveness under pressure; concern with priorities; creative thinking
Leadership potential is considered important because it is assumed that most graduates will eventually take up senior positions and roles in managing others. Aside from graduates, those who can lead other people in the direction the organization chooses are valued highly.
• Team Working:
This ability is necessary to work in formal and informal, interdisciplinary, long-term and project based teams or groups towards a common objective; motivating and encouraging others while taking the lead.
Understanding the different roles within groups and importance of team-building, when you analyze your transferable skills, be sure to include this area.
• Adaptability and Flexibility:
Necessary for the initiation of, and response to, changing circumstances, possessing the breadth of intellect, interests, knowledge and attitudes required for adapting to changing circumstances and demands.
Initiative skills – seeing opportunities and setting and achieving goals with commitment and motivation; having energy and enthusiasm when carrying out projects.
The ability to set and achieve goals for yourself and for others. Employers increasingly need those who will help move the organization forward, so the capacity to recognize opportunities, appraise needs, evaluate risks and execute effective action plans in order to achieve results is also highly regarded
Judged by how effectively mental ability is turned into action and as an underpinning for the use of the other skills wanted by the employers. Includes understanding and using information such as numbers, statistics and graphs.
Making a career change typically means starting over in a new and untried field and you have to invest your time and energy, make sacrifices and prove yourself as a credible professional in your chosen new field.
You have to be highly motivated to sustain the drive that is necessary to be successful. After you convince yourself that changing careers is the right thing to do, you still have to convince your potential employers to give you the job you are seeking.
Transferable skills, those skills that can be utilized in numerous fields, are the key to a successful career change.
Consider your qualifications to date. What experience have you acquired that can be transferred across industries? When you link your skills with your personal qualities you will have a winning package that ensures your career change goes smoothly.
Transferable skills are essentially your list of usable job skills, including verbal and written communication, people management, customer relations, organization and project management, development of new processes, generation of new ideas or concepts.
These skills don't just come from your working life, they may come from any type of activity where you apply yourself to a task.
Think about all the things you do, then consider what skill you need and what you need to know to be able to do the things you have done.
These are all relevant, transferable skills that can give you the extra confidence and ability to make your job move or career change. Pay some attention to your interview presentation skills so that you are comfortable presenting this information in an interview.
Follow the link for another informative page of information about the top skills that employers want.
These transferable work skills are your key employability skills and as such can be adapted easily to all organizations. Most jobs have massivley similar skill requirements and the dissimilarities can be learned easily.
For example, if you would like to ditch the humdrum 9-to-5 desk job for a more hectic, unpredictable job as say, a police officer, let your potential employer know that your previous experience in leading by motivation makes you a perfect candidate for the job (even if that marketing project you managed has nothing to do with community relations).
See how that keeps your career options wide open and allows you to use your key strengths fully.
Making a list of all your professional experiences and the qualifications needed for the job you are seeking will help you in determining which skills are transferable to your new career.
Once you define your transferable skills, use a functional resume or CV to assure most (if not all) of the qualifications needed for the new job are met in your resume. Need help with writing a CV? Click the link.
In addition to your resume, use your cover letter or email to let your potential employer know why you are changing careers, and that your new interest is not a passing one.
Make sure that your resume reflects your new-found interest in a genuine and professional manner, and you are sure to have a successful career change.
Your transferable skills need a lot of thought when considering changing careers because, it is one of the more important decisions you will have to make.
When changing your career, you have to consider your family, your living and financial situation, and your competitive advantage in the new field.
On top of that think about what your long term goals might be.
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Answers to FAQs Writing a CV is a difficult task regardless of your level of experience with the process. While the content of your CV is critical to its effectiveness, the layout and the format you utilize are equally as important. To get started, you should research various CV and resume styles to find out which best suits your field.
Do you have a career change question that you need an answer to? You can ask me a specific job related question on this page and I'll give you my best answer, but please fully explain the circumstances and background behind the question you ask.
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Answers to FAQs
Writing a CV is a difficult task regardless of your level of experience with the process. While the content of your CV is critical to its effectiveness, the layout and the format you utilize are equally as important. To get started, you should research various CV and resume styles to find out which best suits your field.