As part of the Careers For Tomorrow Festival, I attended the ‘Career Adaptation: Become a flexible professional’ workshop. The focus was on transferable skills and I could see students attending felt energised and more confident about seeing their value and making it work for them in the great, daunting workplace beyond uni.
One fear a lot of us have is “what now?” You have your degree, or are working towards one, and now the pressure of finding a related job has arrived. But doubt can set in. Are you skilled enough to do the job? Is this the right path for you? Have you just wasted the past few years for nothing?
Finding the confidence to pursue your ambitions can be daunting, especially when factors of experience and knowledge come into play.
The key is to focus on what you can do, rather than what you can’t. Optimise your skills and transfer them into other roles and fields if need be.
What are your skills?
Consider all of your experiences so far. Note down what skills and qualities connect to what.
An important factor to remember is that many things connect to skills e.g. sporting commitments develop teamwork, group projects offer opportunities to communicate with others, the IGA job you’ve had since Year 10 shows reliability and loyalty, and parallel parking demonstrates spatial awareness!
Everything you bring can be valid if tailored to the right job – so don’t rule anything out just yet!
Are you qualified for the job?
Job ads will most likely have a checklist of things the employer is looking for but, in most cases, we are inclined to rule ourselves out when we don’t qualify for one of these ‘requirements’. Just because you don’t have 10 years’ experience doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t be considered.
Have confidence in what you can bring rather than what you can’t.
Employers may be willing to spend time training you if they believe you will be a valuable asset to their company. That said, spend time looking at jobs you can relate to and where you can realistically see you would fit. There’s no point in applying for a Graduate Engineering role without an Engineering degree!
The ability to ‘market yourself’
The ability to ‘market yourself’ is vital when it comes to applying for jobs. The way in which you relate things back to what you’ve done and how you make your experiences seem relevant is crucial.
Regardless of how unrelated your experiences may be to the position, it’s how you convince employers otherwise that proves your ability to do the job.
Be confident, talk yourself up – employers are interested in what you can bring. There’s no room for modesty!
In the job market, take the time to find what works for you. Just be sure to give yourself a chance before you turn yourself down.
If you require any further assistance, our Careers Cube is open Monday to Friday in B102 Curtin Connect with no booked appointment necessary.