Lumen Learning and Linda (Bruce) Hill
- Hard skills are concrete or objective abilities that you learn and perhaps have mastered. They are skills you can easily quantify, like using a computer, speaking a foreign language, or operating a machine. You might earn a certificate, a college degree, or other credentials that attest to your hard-skill competencies. Obviously, because of changes in technology, the hard skills required by industries today are vastly different from those required centuries ago.
- Soft skills, on the other hand, are subjective skills that have changed very little over time. Such skills might pertain to the way you relate to people, or the way you think, or the ways in which you behave—for example, listening attentively, working well in groups, and speaking clearly. Soft skills are sometimes also called “transferable skills” because you can easily transfer them from job to job or profession to profession without much training. Indeed, if you had a time machine, you could probably transfer your soft skills from one time period to another!
What Employers Want in an Employee
Specific Skills Necessary for Your Career Path
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|1 ||Career Aptitude Test (Rasmussen College) ||This test helps you match your skills to a particular career that’s right for you. Use a sliding scale to indicate your level of skill in the following skill areas: artistic, interpersonal, communication, managerial, mathematics, mechanical, and science. Press the Update Results button and receive a customized list of career suggestions tailored to you, based on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. You can filter by salary, expected growth, and education. |
|2 ||Skills Profiler (Career OneStop from the U.S. Department of Labor) ||Use the Skills Profiler to create a list of your skills, and match your skills to job types that use those skills. Plan to spend about 20 minutes completing your profile. You can start with a job type to find skills you need for a current or future job. Or if you are not sure what kind of job is right for you, start by rating your own skills to find a job type match. When your skills profile is complete, you can print it or save it. |
|3 ||O*Net OnLine ||This U.S. government website helps job seekers answer two of their toughest questions: “What jobs can I get with my skills and training?” and “What skills and training do I need to get this job?” Browse groups of similar occupations to explore careers. Choose from industry, field of work, science area, and more. Focus on occupations that use a specific tool or software. Explore occupations that need your skills. Connect to a wealth of O*NET data. Enter a code or title from another classification to find the related O*NET-SOC occupation. |
Transferable Skills for Any Career Path
- Dependable and punctual (showing up on time, ready to work, not being a liability)
- Willing to learn (lifelong learner)
- Able to accept constructive criticism
- A good problem solver
- Strong in customer service skills
- Adaptable (willing to change and take on new challenges)
- A team player
- Positive attitude
- Strong communication skills
- Good in essential work skills (following instructions, possessing critical thinking skills, knowing limits)
- Safety conscious
- Strong in time management
10 Top Skills You Need to Get a Job When You Graduate
Video: 10 top skills that will get you a job when you graduate
How to Find a New Job–Transferable Job Skills
Video: How to find a new job – Transferable Job Skills
Activity: Assess Your Soft Skills
- Review the transferable skills listed in the self-assessment exercises developed by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).
- Analyze your strengths and areas in which you need to improve individual essential skills.
- Read each statement in Section 1 of any transferable skills pertinent to a profession you are interested in.
- Place a checkmark in the column that best describes how well you can complete that task. Think about your work and life experiences as you consider each task.
- Review your responses for each task. If you have checked five or more in the “Somewhat” and/or “No” columns, you may want to consider upgrading your oral communication skills.
- Complete Section 2 to identify your training needs.
Oral Communication Self-Assessment
Computer Use Self-Assessment
Document Use Self-Assessment
Continuous Learning Self-Assessment
Working with Others Self-Assessment
Acquiring Necessary Skills (both in and out of class) for Your Career Goals
- Learn how to write clearly. After you’ve written something, have people edit it. Then rewrite it, taking into account the feedback you received. Write all the time.
- Learn how to speak. Speak clearly on the phone and at a table. For public speaking, try Toastmasters. “Meet and speak. Speak and write.”
- Be reachable. Publish your email so that people can contact you. Don’t worry about spam.
- Learn about computers and computing, even if you aren’t gearing for a career in information technology. Learn something entirely new every six to twelve months.
- Build relationships within your community. Use tools like Meetup.com and search for clubs at local schools, libraries, and centers. Then, seek out remote people around the country and world. Learn about them and their projects first by searching the Internet.
- Attend conferences and events. This is a great way to network with people and meet them face-to-face.
- Find a project and get involved. Start reading questions and answers, then start answering questions.
- Collaborate with people all over the world.
- Keep your LinkedIn profile and social media profiles up-to-date. Be findable.
- Keep learning. Skills will often beat smarts. Be sure to schedule time for learning and having fun!
Just Get Involved
- Get involved in part-time work
- Get involved in extracurricular activities
- Get involved with employment and career development
- Get involved with volunteer work. Check out this website for volunteer matching.
Video: Tips to improve your career from Monash Graduates
Licenses and Attributions:
- 10 top skills that will get you a job when you graduate. Authored by: TARGETjobs. Located at: https://youtu.be/jKtbaUzHLvw. License: All Rights Reserved. License Terms: Standard YouTube License.
- How to find a new jobu2014Transferable Job Skills. Authored by: Learn English with Rebecca. Located at: https://youtu.be/7Kt4nz8KT_Y. License: All Rights Reserved. License Terms: Standard YouTube License.
- Tips to improve your career from Monash Graduates. Authored by: Monash University. Located at: https://youtu.be/7EBDrTdccAY. License: All Rights Reserved. License Terms: Standard YouTube License.