Thursday, November 10, 2011

Knowing & Owning Your Skills

PSST… those of you hoping to begin a career after graduation read this!

A very wise person once told me that a résumé gets you an interview, and an interview can
then lead to you getting a job/career. Now I know we’ve all heard before, from some person or another, to just try our hardest and put our best foot forward during interviews. Here’s the problem with that, if your résumé is not impressive enough to get you the interview, you’ve just missed out on your opportunity to wow the interviewer(s) in person.

So you ask, “How do I create a résumé that will shine above the rest and put me closer to the top of the interviewing list?” There are countless ways to make it happen, one being, knowing and owning your skills. MU CSC very recently had an On the Road event that presented the topic of “Identifying and Building Your Skills.” We learned that employers have standards, along with expectations. They desire for potential new hires to possess good communication, technology, critical thinking, problem solving, and leadership skills, just to name a few. A significant amount of job descriptions will list (directly and indirectly) the skills new employees should have.

So now you ask, “what does this have to do with my résumé?” Well, here’s a simple exercise to aid you in pulling all of those pieces together:
  1. Grab a blank sheet of paper and write down all of the skills and job qualifications the employer has mentioned in the job description
  2. Now place a check next to each skill/qualification you feel as if you possess
  3. Next, think of an experience, or two, in which you’ve displayed that skill
  4. Last step, and most important, incorporate those skills into your résumé so that
    employers can clearly see why you’re the ideal candidate for the job.

That’s it! With three easy steps you’ve just intensified and enhanced your résumé.

WAIT”, you scream, “I’m not sure if I can do this on my own.”
My reply, “No worries, that’s what the MU CSC Career Counselors and Advisors are here for.
Either stop by – Holthusen Hall, first floor – or give us a call at (414) 288-7423 to set up an appointment.”

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