Whether you’re applying for a position in the IT industry or looking for a career in business management, you’ll often find yourself competing with countless other people vying for the same job. If you want to land that job, you need to set yourself apart from the rest, and the best way to do that is to make your skills more attractive to employers.
An Ongoing Process
The first thing you need to know about improving your skills is that there will always be room for improvement. The more you develop your skills, the more you realise that you can further improve them. Aside from constantly developing your current skills, you also get the chance to acquire new ones throughout your career. Here’s a quick rundown on how to hone your skills.
Have Your Skills Professionally Assessed
The best way to learn more about your skill set is through skills recognition via programs like Recognition of Prior Learning or RPL. Once you’re properly assessed, you’ll be able to figure out the best career path to take, especially if you’re looking at switching jobs or if you are aiming to have your existing skills or knowledge properly recognised. The good thing about skills recognition is that it can help you find out if you already have a few job opportunities that you can take on, provided your current skill set fits of course. More importantly, skills recognition can also help you pinpoint areas that need improvement, or if you lack certain skills that keep you from getting that job you’ve always wanted.
From here, you have a number of options that you can explore in order to improve yourself. These include the following:
Certification and Training
Back then, employers put a strong emphasis on having a bachelor’s degree or better. However, that’s no longer the case because many businesses today prefer hiring someone with experience and skills—things that you won’t always pick up from earning a degree in college. One of the best ways to let a prospective employer know that you have what they’re looking for is showing your certifications and trainings.
While taking a course for proper certification isn’t instant, it usually takes less time than a full college degree. This makes it a great option if you don’t have the time or money to spend on college but still want more promising career options. Many certification courses today are available online and offer very flexible study plans, which is great for people already working another job.
Some skills such as leadership and problem-solving can be acquired and improved outside the classroom. For example, writing for a local newspaper helps improve your communication and organisational skills, while playing with others (sports or otherwise) can improve both leadership and teamwork skills.
The best thing about this? You get to choose which activities to participate in. No need to worry about having to slog through a bunch of activities that you might not even enjoy in the first place.
Not everyone can get their dream job from employers in just a short amount of time. During this time, some would spend time working at some other job while waiting for the next opportunity. What many fail to realise is that a temporary job in itself is a big opportunity to learn new things and improve one’s personal skills. And who knows? It could even lead to something more permanent if you end up gaining the skills and knowledge necessary for a lucrative career in that industry.
However, you have to keep in mind that this alternative job might be completely different than what you expected. You might end up permanently in that industry, or you could instead choose another career path later on. Always consider your end goal when looking for a temporary job so you’ll be well-prepared by the time your dream job is ready for the taking. This way, you’ll be able to make a smooth transition.
Improving your skills may sound tedious at first, but this process often means you’re constantly opening yourself to more job opportunities. Just keep at it and maintain a good record of your achievements to get the attention of prospective employers.
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