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Joe Peters29 Aug 2019
  • Guest Post
  • Insight
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Top 5 Transferable Skills You Can Develop in Almost Any Job

Job skills are either specialised or general, and some are more valuable than others. While having specialised training in your field does play a role in your hireability, transferable general job skills are often a foundation that many employees overlook and it’s likely you have far more than you think!

In today’s highly competitive, and often global, job market you have to have these transferable skills in order to succeed in your career search. You must demonstrate them on your CV and be able to relate them to the job which you are applying for.

So, which skills are transferable, and which ones are most valuable? Keep reading to learn more.

Transferable Skills 101

Put simpl transferable skills are work-related skills that you can obtain from, and take to, just about any job. If you’ve had at least one job, you’ve likely picked up some of your own transferable assets along the way and it’s imperative that you know what these are so you can communicate them in a job interview and on your CV.

Today, developing these skills is as critical as networking, if not more so because employers want people who can be versatile employees.

Here are the top five transferable skills that you're more than likley to have.

1. Communication

In nearly every single career field, communication is vital. From speaking, to articulating your words in writing, you need to be able to communicate effectively with both your colleagues and your clients. Daily work tasks are not possible without effective communication skills.

But communication is about more than talking. How you express yourself is only one facet of communication and in order to maximize your use of this transferable skill, you need experience in all areas:

● Verbal: What you say and how you say it matters, but again it isn’t the only element here. This is generally what most people assume when they think of “communication skills”. ● Written: Clear, concise written communications are vital, including knowing how to communicate across various written platforms (press release vs. social media, etc.). ● Listening Skills: Listening is the most overlooked part of communication. Most people listen to hear things or simply wait for their turn to talk. You need to learn how to listen to understand and absorb the necessary information. ● Technical Skills: This refers to your ability to choose the appropriate medium for the conversation. For example, you might text a co-worker to remind them of an after-work social event, but you wouldn’t shoot a “Tyvm!” text to the CEO after a special recognition. That would be better suited for an email.

2. Technical Skills

Technological competence was a bonus skill - once.

20 years ago, when the internet was still getting its sea legs, companies didn’t expect their employees to be skilled in computers and internet use. Today, the total opposite is tru

Regardless of what industry you work in, strong technical skills are a must in almost every job. And right now, independent employees who are well-versed in common software and hardware issues are highly sought after.

Companies who use the Windows operating system will prefer employees who can resolve common Windows issues on their own, while those who prefer Macs will seek candidates who are familiar with resolving common Mac errors.

Even teens applying for their first job in retail or fast food can benefit from listing skills that could relate to their ability to use a digital POS or handheld inventory management system.

It’s no longer about whether you have technology skills - it’s about how relevant and nurtured they are, based on your given field of employment.

From things like surfing the web to using cloud storage servers, it’s likely you have a lot more tech experience that you realise which is important as companies expect a lot of employees today in the realm of technology.

3. Analytical/Problem-Solving Skills

Problem-solving happens on a daily basis in all kinds of businesses, and in personal settings too. If you aren’t able to think on your feet and help discover a solution, you don’t bring much to the table.

Problem solving skills refer to your ability to logically think through a challenge, clearly define the nature of the challenge, and then determine solutions and find the one with the desired outcome.

These may be listed on a resume or job posting as: ● Analytical skills ● Problem-solving skills ● Critical thinking skills Have examples of times you’ve used these skills is past jobs or your everyday life ready to share with an interviewer

4. Time Management

Much like communication skills, time management skills are often called many things but fall under one umbrella. In the new era of employment, companies are demanding employees that can efficiently finish tasks and handle multiple responsibilities at one time.

As organizations strive to adapt to ever-changing industry shifts, they are often putting new and challenging tasks on employees, so they need dynamic individuals that are willing to learn and are up to the challenge.

Few people realize that solid time management skills come from three areas of practice: ● Being organized ● Establishing a priority order ● Knowing which tasks to finish first (deep work is better done during mornings)

Being able to do more vastly different tasks is no longer a perk. It is a requirement for most employers and something you can pick up just about anywhere. These skills are not hard to come by and they are a must-have for your career success.

5. Leadership/Teamwork Skills

Leadership and teamwork skills might seem like opposites, but they’re both crucial parts of any work environment: the team.

Every profession and industry understands and appreciates the value of teamwork, including the ability to lead and follow, depending on the circumstances.

Although the wording is generic, the sentiment of the following skill listing is a delight to most hiring managers: “Ability to work effectively on an independent basis and as part of a team.”

Sometimes, being a team player means following and taking your place among your co-workers. Other times, it means taking charge of the team and carrying the project to completion. Being versatile in this skill set is going to make you a much more valuable employee. Some people (wrongfully) assume that you can’t list leadership and teamwork skills together because they are contradictory. In fact, these are complementary skills and if you pay attention, you’ll notice just how many job postings ask candidates to have both.

In conclusion specific industry skills are what will land you the perfect job. Transferable skills are what you need to demonstrate to even get a job. Although the skills listed here are primarily “soft” skills (generalized), there are plenty of transferable hard skills, such as Windows 10 Mastery or Hubspot Certification, that will be valuable in a number of roles and organizations. The bottom line?

Never underestimate the power of basic transferable employment skills. Start working on yours now for a better career in the future.

Joe Peters is a Baltimore-based freelance writer and an ultimate techie. When he is not working his magic as a marketing consultant, this incurable tech junkie devours the news on the latest gadgets and binge-watches his favorite TV shows. Follow him on @bmorepeters!