Build Your Skills and Expertise to be More Employable (Without Spending a Cent!)
In this economy, where so many great employees are losing their jobs, whether we ARE employed or we’re looking for our next position, building on our skill set is very important. It is, at times, that extra advanced expertise or knowledge of a software or procedure that will set you apart from the crowd and help you to be the one candidate or team member chosen at the end of a hiring (or layoff) process. How are we to devote the time and money to building our skills, though, when we’re busy working as hard as we can, and saving as much as we can, just in case the bell tolls for us next? Here are three very doable steps that will help you to remain ahead of the proverbial pack.
Tip Number One: Look at what is already available to you! Be sure to take as many free online tutorials from Microsoft and other software manufacturers as possible. Be sure that these are applications that are already on your computer – like PowerPoint, for example. Definitely take the time to up the ante by becoming an expert at applications that you think you know – like learning graphs and tables on Excel or refreshing your abilities on advanced editing or tables of contents on Microsoft Word. How about learning the newsletter applications on Publisher? Invest just ninety minutes a day to explore ALL options for applications already on your computer, and after just one week, you’ll have SEVEN knew skills to list on your resume.
Tip Number Two: Take advantage of free online training. Remember that learning doesn’t begin and end with skills you’re already familiar with. Consider taking an online webinar or teleseminar in a few applications NOT normally found in an office, like video editing, podcasting, blogging, advanced social networking techniques, etc. You can learn a lot of these applications right on BlogTalkRadio or Youtube, believe it or not. (Consider doing a Google search on the experts in a specific area as well. Those individuals will very often offer free training or ebooks, just to keep their “brand” in front of the crowd.) Adding one or two of those areas of expertise will absolutely make you look like a rock star – I mean, who doesn’t wish they had an expert in podcasting or advanced social networking on their team!
Tip Number Three: Don’t forget your library and other local opportunities. The recession isn’t new news – and we can definitely count on our own communities to support us. Call your local library, community college and Chamber of Commerce and ASK them what they’re doing in the way of training and job search support. In fact, it’s quite likely that your State Unemployment Department has a TON of courses available free of charge (in addition to specific job opportunities and workshops).
Finally, in addition to these things, remember that training and support does not end at professional development. PERSONAL development is vitally empowering and very important, especially when you’re facing something as difficult as a job change during a recession. Go online or hit the bookshelves at your library, and invest your TIME in a few good books. You may be surprised to discover that you have vast and unmined resources buried within you.
To your continued success,Catherine Palmiere, CEIC, CPBA, CPCC, CPC, CTS,
Adam Personnel, Inc(212) 557-9150 ext 208