Over the last 10 years of employment I’ve mastered many skills and wore them proudly like a badge of honour. But as the years have gone by they have got rusty and lost their shine.
Before I knew it, I was observing younger employees in my previous job, feeling like my mum when she first used a smartphone.
Where did they learn that?
How do I not know about this?
HOW HAVE I GOT SO OLD?!
I knew I had to get the feather duster out and brush up on my professional skills.
With increasing competition, crowded industries, and less jobs up for grabs, we need to stand out amongst other candidates.
So let’s get into it. Need to up your professional game this year?
Here are 3 ways to BOOST your employability in 2020:
1. Research what employers are looking for
Understand what companies you want to work for are in need of, rather than what potential candidate rivals are doing.
When you look through multiple job opportunities and vacancy ads in a particular industry, you’ll soon find common skills that companies across the board require.
After identifying what employers in your industry are looking for, analyse the soft skills needed to aid that role.
2. Invest your TIME on your SOFT skills
Soft skills are not to be sniffed at.
Being able to say you’ve completed further development in your own time to further these skills is a real bonus.
When faced with a situation that requires a developed understanding of a soft skill, you’ll be well equipped to handle it and create an experience you can reference.
Increased development in communication skills could help you gain new business at a networking event. It might help you dodge a major mishap when working alongside multiple stakeholders/departments. It could even appease a notoriously difficult co-worker.
The benefits outweigh the time spent learning.
Google has highlighted a variety of courses which develop soft skills. With the promise of a digital badge to add to social profiles, it’s a pretty sweet deal.
EdX have a variety of courses relevant to multiple industries, such as communication, critical thinking skills and public speaking. The free courses have the added option of paying for an official certification of course completion.
3. Invest your MONEY in hard skills
Hard skills are job specific within your chosen industry, for example, project management, web design or SEO.
These skills qualify you for certain roles. You shouldn’t be stuck at the bottom of the pile as a prospective candidate with this on your CV.
There are courses by successful folks out there, bestowing knowledge and wisdom on those who have the patience to find them.
You can take an accredited route too if you wish to undergo formal training, earning a qualification upon completion.
If there was a one size fits all route, I’d link as many credible courses as I could.
Alas, you have your own path to take.
I’ll simply suggest that you do your research before investing in any course.
Read reviews, search alumni on LinkedIn, watch videos about people’s progress through the course.
Basically Google. GOOGLE. GOOGLE.
Learning is a constant
There’s always more to learn.
The only way to set ourselves apart from others and gain some kind of certainty is to become skilled.
In everything and anything that interests you.
With accreditations and qualifications.
Skilled in experience.
As life will (hopefully) be a long journey for us all, so too is our learning progression.
One year we’ll be guided in one direction, the next year we’ll end up somewhere completely different.
But please remember:
Whilst you brush up on your skills, remember you already have a wealth of talents that make you VALUABLE.