Helpful People Share Skills You Can Learn Quickly To Help You Ace The Next Job Application.
So you're unemployed. After hours of scouring online job boards you've finally found it: your dream job. Before you can ace the interview though, you need to pass the application and resume round. Unfortunately, for a lot of people, this is the end of the line because they simply can't articulate themselves well enough or don't have the most transferable skills.
People on Reddit were asked: "What is a skill someone can learn in 6 months that will impress employers on a resume?" These are some of the best answers.
Dude, start brewing beer. Every damn time I go into a interview that comes up and never in a negative light, either.
Seriously, brewing beer is an eye catcher and a conversation starter.
Communication skills. This would be more evident during the interview rather than on a resume, but employers NEED people who can communicate efficiently and effectively.
Excel, excel, excel, excel, excel.
I have 3 friends that are excel masters and they all have climbed their respective work ladders extremely fast because of it.
Learn to spin up a wordpress/wix/squarespace site. Employers love people that can do things they don't know how. Many older people don't know anything about the web. Therefore they don't know the difference between spinning up a website with a site helper (wordpress/wix/squarespace) and actually coding.
Building a website these days doesn't even require an ounce of coding knowledge.
You can learn very basic phrases of a foreign language within a week. If you're going somewhere then you probably won't need to know it fluently but a few common words can help enormously. Duolingo is very useful for this.
Most of us spend so much time tied to our PCs for school/work that we'd up our productivity dramatically if we could all type efficiently.
I've done courses in all the software I use through work despite not really needing them and yet I've never been offered a typing course. Even when I've asked for one.
I know this seems pretty simplistic but learning to 10-key without looking turned out to be a pretty handy trick and it's very easy to become fast at it.
It's not a skill that will change your world, but it will allow you to work a lot faster if you work with numbers.
They won't admit it, but bosses like having folks around who can revive them if they have a heart attack at work.
One thing I can highly recommend is some basic programming skills. Even if your (eventual) job has nothing to do with software, just listing it on your resume will make you sound like a computer genius.
Going off of the recent round of hiring that we did, having some general office tech skills (knowing how to troubleshoot a mac and PC), understanding Adobe Acrobat, how to write and edit PDFs (your university should be able to give you the pro version for a good discount), some basic photoshop skills, some basic web design, etc.
Smaller companies don't always have a dedicated staff person who can do these things because there's not enough work to support it. However, having someone on staff who knows the basics in these areas gives you a leg up over someone who doesn't, because you suddenly become a "two-fer." "Yeah, he's entry level, but maybe we can also have him take a look at revamping our website, or help Sarah with her laptop problems."
Getting really good at typing fast actually doesn't take very long and is impressive for any office job. Just put your pointer fingers at F and J and stop looking at your keyboard.
My friend from NYC was out of work, so he decided to study wine for a month and apply as a server at a high end French restaurant. (Apparently many high-end restaurants quiz you on wine as part of the interview.) He's also super charming, so he was pulling hundreds in tips a day. Dude's a genius.
Try learning sign language. You would be surprised how many opportunities show up. If you're in college you can learn the basics in only one semester. Employers hired my sister because they could always use an interpreter to talk to deaf customers.
Master everything about appearance. Learn to dress well, get in shape, grooming, etc. Makes a huge difference in life.
Learn to LISTEN. When you are being interviewed, listen to what the person is saying, then ask pertinent questions regarding things he/she has said.
I wrote articles for my university newspaper (commitment of about 2-3 hours a week) and to my surprise nearly every employee who interviews me asks about it. And I have a lot more impressive stuff on my resume, but I guess it stands out because writing proficiency is crucial for most jobs. Anyway, it's a low effort/high reward experience and I would recommend it for sure.
How to write a good resume.
Leadership, leadership, leadership. Go join a club, work hard to hold an important position. Shows your ability for growth in a company as you can move towards management.
Look for a toastmasters club, they help with practicing your speeches. Even if you never expect to give a speech, knowing how to talk, stand, and convey what you want is a very valuable skill.
You should start a blog. Write about whatever interests you, but it should be something comms-focused. A blog like copyranter, or adfreak or something. I'm a suit at an ad agency and my old blog helped me get a job. Happened to a few friends too.
You can become a Notary Public. It's not a hard exam. Short study time and it looks great on a resume.
I am often on interview committees.
Biggest thing is having some type of real world experience, either volunteering or interning.
I roll my eyes every time we get someone who talks about all of the great technical support he provides to his grandmother. However, if you volunteered technical support at a school or museum or anything related to being out in the real world relating with real people, you are more likely to get considered.
Public speaking will do you heaps of good in whatever field you pursue.
Network. Go to the industry meetings that you want to work in, meet people, ask them about their projects (and be ready to talk about yours), volunteer, intern if possible, organize meetups and small un-conferences, brush up your social media profile and take pictures of events and post them on your professional themed blog.
Racism is an insidious, and unfortunately prevalent, force in all of our daily lives. Maybe we're on the receiving end of it, being treated differently and losing opportunities because of others' preconceived notions.
Or maybe we're on the other side of things. Even those who aren't actively racist or discriminatory still have to process the world through the filters of the things they've been told about people who are different.