Develop a New Skill

Day 3 of 30 Days to Your Dream Job

Young woman in cafe working on laptop
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The task for Day 2 involved recognizing and publicizing your strengths as they relate to your dream job.

Today’s task is about recognizing and improving upon your weaknesses in order to become a more ideal job candidate.

List the Skills and Requirements for Your Dream Job

To begin, think about the requirements of your ideal job. If you are unsure, look online at job listings, or speak to people who work in your industry.

Then, make a list of the most common skills, experiences, and educational requirements of your dream job (if you completed the task for Day 1, you should have this list completed already). Circle any credentials on that list that you do not have, or that you would like to improve upon.

Select One Skill to Develop

You cannot realistically acquire all of these skills and experiences in 30 days. However, select one specific credential you are lacking, and make an effort to develop that skill.

For example, if you lack knowledge in a particular computer program, but it is a requirement for your dream job, sign up for a free or inexpensive online course (such as a Massive Open Online Course, or MOOC) that will help you develop that skill.

If you cannot find an online course that fits your needs (or if you do not like taking online courses), look to your local public library, adult education program, or community college to see if any of these institutions offers free or inexpensive courses on such topics.

Add the Skill to Your Resume

Once you begin to take steps towards developing a skill, you can then add that skill to your resume. For example, if you are learning to use WordPress, you can list it in the “Skills” section of your resume, noting the name of the course you are taking, and the expected completion date.

Use It During Job Interviews

This will also be useful in a job interview. If an interviewer expresses concern with, for example, your lack of knowledge of a particular foreign language, you can explain that you are currently taking a course to develop that ability.

This will not only demonstrate that you have the skills required for that job, but also that you have such an interest in the job that you are willing to take the initiative to learn a recommended skill. Employers will appreciate your proactivity.

Even improving upon one weak spot in your credentials will make you a much stronger candidate during the hiring process.