Posts Tagged ‘Skills’

Grow Your Career


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Plan and Grow Your Career

In the past, most people in New York went to work for a company and just built their career at that company. Or maybe more accurately the company built their career for them in the direction the company wanted it to go. Neither of these things is true today.

No company provides us with a 35-40 year ride. In order to have such a successful career today, you have to be in charge and you have to have a plan. No longer will your career be spent in one company directed by that company. Now you are on your own in building your career and you need a plan.

Here are the major elements of a modern career plan.

  1. Your Relevance to the Marketplace – there will be over a million jobs created in New York over the next 5-7 years. If you want to grow, your plan must begin with being relevant to that market, to have the skils, training and experience to win in this marketplace.
  2. Make sure the career you choose to pursue fits the needs of the marketplace and matches your skills. For instance manufacturing is a hot ticket these days. However it is not your father’s manufacturing plant. This one is robotic and high tech everywhere you look. These are great paying jobs that require post-secondary education.

Another career in high demand today and well into the future is anything to do with the medical field. Doctors, nurses, physician’s assistants, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, pharmacy techs, chemists, and more are in demand.

When you consider a career plan, consider what the marketplace is going to be looking for in the next 10-20 years.

  1. One old adage that is as relevant today as it was 30 years ago and must be in your plan –NETWORK. This is the see and be seen part of your plan. Nothing replaces networking when advancing your career. Networking is not just for getting the job – it is relevant long after you start your career. If you want to grow you career you must learn who the movers and shakers are and network with them.
  2. Social media is another see and be seen tool – another way of networking. Don’t choose one over the other. Do both. Go to the Chamber of Commerce afterhours and have a strong presence on Linked-In. Linked-in is the largest business oriented social media site in the world. Take advantage of it. Connect with the people who can help you to grow your career.
  3. Figure out what it is you do best and then sell it. What are you the best at? Sell it to the employers.
  4. 6.   Stick-to-itiveness. Stay with it. Be resolute. Remember the only constant in life is change. Be ready for it. Prepare for it. Plan on it.

These are the major components to keep in mind as you attempt to plan and grow your career. Most of all remember that you MUST have a plan. Not just in your head but a written plan if you really want your career to take off.

Hire a Hero


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Hire a Hero

It’s time for all hiring managers in New York to understand how the experience of military personnel translates into skills in the secular, non-military world. Most executive recruiter had little use for those who were just getting out of the military because they knew their clients would not even look at their resumes. Why? We don’t know that. Clients typically could not or would not see how the skills learned in the military translated to civilian jobs.

Things seem to be changing in the post Iraq-Afghanistan era,  but not quickly enough. Today, more companies are hiring returning soldiers, but too many still cannot find jobs. As a returning veteran what will it take for you to get the job you want and need? What industries have a record of hiring vets?

Some of the greatest skills the returning soldier has to offer the job market are leadership and a solid work ethic. You can count on the veteran to be on the job every day. Hiring a veteran is in the best interest of the company. They just have to be convinced of this fact. Some of the traits veterans bring to the job market beyond work ethic and leadership include the following:

  • Veterans are great team players whether as team members or team leaders.
  • Veterans have great integrity and can be trusted.
  • Veterans are adaptable and will go with the flow. They will not panic.
  • Veterans are terrific decision makers and thoughtful workers.
  • Veterans are quick on their feet, make decisions and act on them.
  • Veterans have a good understanding of logistics.

So what companies are targeting veterans for these qualities that they already possess? There are industries that need these very skills. Some of the industries that veterans should target include:

  • The trucking industry hires veterans for their leadership and work ethic. The long hours and the time alone built into the life of a truck driver, are also things that a soldier has to deal with and overcome. Studies show that one in every five truck drivers has a military background.
  • Heath care with all its changes and all its growth is another field that is learning that the veteran can fit into some of their jobs and excel at it. Field medics and service people who worked in any medical field have knowledge and experience that the health care industry can use.
  • Government jobs are perfectly suited for the returning veteran. In every major job market there are government agencies.

These are only a sample of the industries in New York that have learned the value of the returning soldier to their company. The veteran needs to produce a resume that stresses the skills that these companies are looking for. For the most part, this will be a functional resume and not a chronological one.

You will want to put the military experience up front in the special skills set area. Note not just that you have leadership ability and experience – give examples of it. Give examples of your work ethic and your quick reactions. Do these things well and there will be plenty of jobs in New York for the returning military hero.

Top 10 Skills


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Top 10 Transferable Skills         

We have talked at length in several articles about presenting transferable skills on your resume as opposed to always listing job duties and responsibilities.        We have also discussed how important this is if you are attempting to transfer from one type of career or field of work to another.

There is however a certain set of skills that once mastered can be transferred from one job to another with ease. These are also the skills that are most in demand at any time by most New York hiring managers. No matter what field you are in and no matter what field you might like to migrate into next, these skills will always be at the top of the list for any hiring manager. Let’s look at the top ten of these.

  • Communication: This can be verbal or written. It can and should encompass different types of communication such as negotiation, public speaking, persuasion, counseling, training and coaching. Without good listening skills you cannot claim to have good communication skills.


  • Interpersonal: This includes a lot of the skills inherent in good communication and in good listening skills, as well as things like patience and honesty.


  • Leadership:  One of the most important transferrable skills anyone can have. Leadership skills do not mean that you are now or going to be a supervisor or manager. Leadership skills are needed whether you are going to be in that type of a position or not. You can be a leader without having the supervisory role. To be a leader you need to be able to give instruction, be accountable, and be able to inspire others to follow your lead. If you have these skills make sure they are highlighted on your resume.


  • Listening: This is one of the more important skills as well. Active listening means really listening. It does not mean pretending to listen while you decide what you are going to say in response to whatever that person is saying. You can’t be actively listening and thinking at the same time. All your abilities need to be focused toward what the other is saying,


  • Teamwork: One of the most transferable skills of all is teamwork. It is also an essential skill for anyone who wants advancement in their career. You have to be able to work with others. Whether those others were difficult or easy to get along with you need to be a team player. The true team player is able to work with just about anyone.


  •  Computer Skills of some sort are critical to the potential of transferring from one field to another these days as the ability to use technology to collect and analyze both data and numbers is essential in a wide range of job fields.


  •  Time Management is a vital transferable skill for anyone in any role to conquer, but it is particularly important to supervisors, managers, leaders and project managers. Getting the most out of the time you have without burning yourself out or wasting time is critical.


  • Creativity is not always a skill you have or need to have in order to move from one career field to another. Your ability to think creatively is a major plus. Thinking a situation through from many different angles is a major plus in terms of transferable skills.


  • Problem Solving is always a transferrable skill. Problem solving skills allow you to take advantage of situations that come your way. There are a multitude of jobs waiting for those who are able to effectively problem solve,


  • Learning: Finally the ability to learn, coaching ability you might say, is a crucial transferable skill. Learning is something we will be involved with all our lives if we are open to it and have the right attitude. You might be good at one thing and not another, but if you have the ability to learn, you can be good at everything.


All of these are also skills that can have a lot of value for you in your personal life as well as your professional life. Many of these skills are really intertwined as good communication skills require good listening skills and good interpersonal skills. The more of these skills you can conquer and integrate the more value you will have to any employer.