Free Career Planning – Understanding Your Skills

Does this sound like you, "I need help deciding what career to choose." Well clarity comes from knowing what you have gotten in terms of skills and experience combined with what you like and what is available in your job market. Here is a bit of free career planning advice. It is great reviewing professional descriptions to see what looks attractive but in my experience it is much more powerful reviewing a career description from the strong foundation of self knowledge. Know what you have done and what you are good at.

We all have talents and skills, which we use in our daily lives. By talent we mean a natural gift or ability. Skills are those capabilities you have learned.

What do you say when you are asked these questions –

o Tell me, what are your strengths?
o What are your most significant work achievements?
o What can you do for us?

The answer that is wanted is an outline of your career skills – skills which are relevant to the career or job you may be applying for.

Knowing your own career skills set helps you carry out effective career research and really provides a firm foundation for your development of your career search including your Resume and its good advice for preparation for a job interview.

We have a simple and easy way to help you answer these questions. But it will take you some time. Think about this – you have a wide range of skills, you can not write them down or summarize them in a couple of minutes. We will look at your skills by dividing these into 3 areas:

1. Functional / Transferable Skills
2. Self Management Skills
3. Special knowledge or work content skills.

In this first article of three let's look at functional and transferable skills.

Functional / Transferable Skills. This list of skills can be useful for you if you review the list and highlight the skills you have. We will use this to start to develop a long skills list. This will be really helpful for you in preparing your resume / CV and getting ready for career search and interview.

Go through this list of skills and start to create your own long list of your skills.

Functional / Transferable Skills.

Can be divided into skills with people, skills with information and skills with things.

Skills with People

Developing relationships: Rapport, networks of contacts, getting on well with others

Representing / Selling / PR: Contacting, bartering, servicing, dealing with inquiries, selling ideas, products or services

Assisting / Caring: Looking after needs of young, sick, elderly, disabled, those with physical / emotional problems

Serving: Acknowledging others, evaluating / meeting needs, reinforcing buying

Informing / Discussing / Interviewing: Answering, explaining, constructive criticism, reporting information, interviewing

Influencing / Advising: Negotiating, arguing a case, defending, setting out arguments, professional advice, policy

Presenting / Instructing: Lectures, coaching, training, facilitating, formal events

Counseling: Social, physical, emotional, job

Co-operating / Liaison: Joint projects, teamwork …

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