Career experts don’t always agree, but here’s one expert’s list:
- Positive attitude toward work
- Proficiency in field of study
- Communication skills (written & oral)
- Interpersonal skills
- Critical thinking and problem-solving skills
What if you don’t possess all the skills required for the job? That’s where transferable skills come in. These are skills you have acquired during any activity in your life “- jobs, classes, projects, parenting, hobbies, sports, virtually anything -“ that are transferable and applicable to what you want to do in your next job. For job interviewing, be ready to point out your transferable skills, with examples that are not always evident from your work experience or education. Read more in our article, Strategic Portrayal of Transferable Job Skills is a Vital Job-Search Technique.
Use a portfolio to showcase your strengths
An old job-hunting tool is making a big comeback. For years, graphic artists, journalists, teachers, and other creative types have used career portfolios while job-hunting, but it is only recently that the idea has caught on for all types of job-seekers.
What is a job skills, job-search, or career portfolio? It is a job-hunting tool that you develop that gives employers a complete picture of who you are -“ your experience, your education, your accomplishments, your skill sets -“ and what you have the potential to become -“ much more than just a cover letter and resume can provide. You can use your career portfolio in job interviews to showcase a point, to illustrate the depth of your skills and experience, or to use as a tool to get a second interview.
This section will show you how to develop your job-search portfolio, key elements to consider in developing your job-search portfolio, and the best resources to explore job-search portfolios in more depth.
Your biggest time commitment will be the initial development of your portfolio, but once you’ve developed it, keeping it current and up-to-date should be fairly easy. Your two biggest decisions in developing your portfolio are determining the format of the portfolio and the organization of the portfolio.
Most experts agree that the portfolio should be kept in a professional three-ring binder (zipper closure optional). You should include a table of contents and use some kind of system -“ such as tabs or dividers -“ to separate the various parts of the portfolio.
Beyond the traditional portfolio, if you have access to space on a Web site, also consider developing an online Web-based portfolio.
Once the development is complete, you then have to gather, write, copy, and assemble the material that goes in the portfolio. This process will not only result in a professional portfolio, but should help you be better prepared for your job search.