Monkey Forest Tales: What are transferable skills?

In past days while attending a webinar about jobs, they talk about transferable skills, and how they account as experience you can put in your CV. Transferable skills are those skills you learn through your volunteering, during your thesis and during your study courses. Most of they are useful even when you want to change your career.

This was not the first time I hear about that, and it was also, not the first time that someone mention how all those things you learn through all the academic and volunteer experiences serve you to transit from different industries and sectors. But it was also not the first time I realize that these skills are not always reflected in my CV.

However, during this webinar, they mention something that I never though as a way to show how to add those transferable skills to your CV. The whole webinar was about how to present yourself as a problem solver for the institution/ company/ client you are reaching out for a job. A new concept for me that also can be use for your CV introduction.

Another important lesson from the webinar and new for me in this context of applying for jobs and improving my CV is the importance of storytelling in this context as it is in others like education. So, one of the main tips from this webinar that I feel can be useful for some of the readers in this blog is to use a story to show how you solve a problem to show them you are the right person to invest in:

Tell a story where you show the situation in which the problem occurs, the role you play to solved, including the skills you use to do it, what action you did to solve the problem and the outcome.  Chose a problem like the one you will solve in the job you are applying for.

Some examples of the transferable skills you have and can be useful in any sector or institution are problem solving, time management, logistic and administration skills, budgeting, workshop facilitation and in some cases conflict resolution. All those names sometimes seem a bit flashy. But if you have done a thesis, you have done most of them, at some part of the process: you have to deal with logistic and administration skills and budgeting while preparing for lab or field work. Additionally, for sure in the field or in the lab you had to solve different kinds of problems and even conflict resolutions with different actors. Also, you have been successful at time management as you were able to finish a complex work in a defined timeframe.

So use those skills every time you tell your story of problem solving to a new employer/ client. If you will like to see the webinar I talked at the beginning of this post I think it is posted in the YouTube channel of Conservation Career. Webinar given by Dr. Jette Stubbs.

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