Identifying skills

Expertise is accumulating in many places. When looking for a job, you often remember to mention the skills acquired through education and work experience. However, especially in the early stages of your career, useful skills may also have been accumulated from activities such as hobbies and volunteering, or a position of responsibility.

To help you identify your skills, you can use the following questions. With these, consider both your work history and studies or courses.

The things you learn form a central part of your expertise. You can think through two different aspects of what you’ve learned:

  • What did you learn during the job?
  • How can you take advantage of what you have learned?

By knowing your strengths, you can amass skills that are transferable to other positions. Thinking about your strengths makes it easier to talk about your expertise, and what working methods come naturally to you.

  • What strengths did you get to use in your job?
  • Which jobs did you find easy?

By explaining your responsibilities, you will describe your role in the work community. Also consider your strengths outside the official organizational structure, or how you see your role in a team or a group. By describing the responsibilities, you also provide concrete information on your skills.

  • What were you in charge of?
  • What would be your role in the work community/team?

When describing your successes, you will discuss your skills, working methods, and attitude to working. Success stories may also have accrued from other sources than paid work or studies, so think about this from many perspectives.

  • How have you been successful at your work?
  • What are you complimented for?
  • Have you been involved in a restructuring or developing the business?