I love to read! I remember going to the library with my great Aunt Miriam and reading Curious George and Paddington Bear.
As a career coach, I want to know as much as I can about career trends and what I need to be sharing with my students. This year I fully immersed myself in career development books, especially career books for women since I work at an all women’s college. Hence, my first post was my book review. I will be sharing more on this blog. I have learned a lot from reading these books.
There seems to be themes in many of them that I would like to now share.
1) KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE!- This was advice from my communications professor at Coker College. It has also been a running theme in all the books I have read. If you know your audience, you can accomplish so much! You can sell a product, deliver a great speech, and possibly land a job. I could write a whole post on this topic.
2) NETWORK- According to “Can I Wear My Nose Ring to the job interview, 70 to 80% of jobs are found through networking. if you are introvert like me, this can be difficult, but it can be learned. There are several books about networking and mingling. At the end of this blog, I will share the link for my review of “The Art of Mingling” by Jean Martinet, which is an excellent book. To network, you need to have your “story” of who you are and what you want. You also need to have your story ready to deliver at a moment’s notice, because you never know who you will meet. Networking can be done anywhere! Practice with family and friends to get more comfortable or your coworkers. Again networking is a whole other post.
3) Soft Skills are just as important as hard skills. You can learn hard skills, but you NEED to go to a job with soft skills. Communication is the number one soft skill that employers say is lacking in employers. Problem solving and decision making are also important. Being adaptable is important. You need to be a good team player but be able to work independently. Soft skills help you keep your job.
4) VOLUNTEER- Volunteering shows employers that you understand that putting others first is the most important. If done consistently, it shows that you are dependable and reliable. Volunteering helps you network and meet others with similar interests. It’s fun and you are able to make a difference in people’s lives for the better.
5) Build Your Brand- Knowing how to market yourself is vital! If you can’t sell yourself, no one is going to do it for you. You are your best advocate. This is where having a “story” is important. If you can tell people about your skills, accomplishments, and interests which is what Peggy Klaus talks about in her BRAG! book then you will be able to market yourself. You have to think of yourself as a brand that people need. What can you offer that others cannot?