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Skills Employers Want and how to get them. Lisa Boniface The Centre for Continuing Education McMaster University November 3, 2010. Agenda. Skills employers want Lifelong learning – the concept Career planning Types of education. Skills Employers Want. Technical skills Soft skills.

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skills employers want and how to get them

Skills Employers Wantand how to get them

Lisa Boniface

The Centre for Continuing Education

McMaster University

November 3, 2010

agenda
Agenda
  • Skills employers want
  • Lifelong learning – the concept
  • Career planning
  • Types of education
skills employers want
Skills Employers Want
  • Technical skills
  • Soft skills
skills employers want1
Skills Employers Want
  • Employers can train for technical skills
  • Soft skills take many years to develop
  • Soft skills trump technical skills
  • Reported by employers as difficult to find
lifelong learning the concept
Lifelong Learning – the concept

A typical career path

  • Get your first “adult” job - through your network
  • Exposed to a field of work or type of position
  • Likes and dislikes - Leads to projects, other jobs
  • Develop skills, understand strengths and preferences
lifelong learning the concept1
Lifelong Learning – the concept
  • Years of service ≠ job security
  • Portfolio of skills
    • Current and relevant to the market
  • Constantly develop yourself
  • Technical + soft skills
  • Employee and employer need to invest
career planning
Career Planning

Assess your current position

  • Do a SWOT analysis
  • What are you good at, what do you love
  • Where do you need to develop
  • Look at performance appraisals
  • Talk to your supervisor, colleagues, family, friends
  • Reflect on your career
career planning1
Career Planning

Establish goals and plan

  • Be purposeful
  • Where do you want to be in 1, 3, 5 years?
  • Identify skills for development
  • Decide how and when you will do this
career planning2
Career Planning
  • Do this every 3-5 years
  • Cyclical – learn from experience
  • Do it yourself or get help
    • Spouse, friend
    • Career counsellor
    • HR resource person
stay informed
Stay Informed
  • What is going on in your field of work?
  • Read the newspaper and journals
  • What new skills are going to be required?
  • Look at job postings
  • What are other people doing?
  • Who is getting ahead?
types of education
Types of Education

Formal education

  • Value of a University degree
  • College diplomas
  • University certificates and diplomas
  • Graduate, professional school

Do something formal a few times throughout your career

types of education1
Types of Education

Professional development

  • Workshops
  • Non-credit courses
  • Lots of soft skill development
  • Free stuff through your employer
  • Conferences
mcmaster continuing education
McMaster Continuing Education
  • Certificate and diploma programs
    • Many lead to professional certification
  • Professional development courses
  • Custom training
types of education2
Types of Education

Informal learning

  • Join a book club
  • Volunteer
  • Sports teams
  • Take on projects – put your hand up
  • Professional journals
  • Learn as a staff team
  • Mentoring
closing thoughts
Closing Thoughts
  • Learning for the sake of learning
  • Be purposeful and invest in yourself
  • Develop your portfolio of skills
  • Be proud of your accomplishments
  • Be a good example – for your kids
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