These 7 Transferable Skills Will Help When Changing Careers

John Krautzel
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Changing careers can lead to a fulfilling professional life. Make sure you tap into the transferable skills you can use at your next opportunity regardless of what field you choose. Discover seven skills you must know before you embark on your journey to success.

What Are Transferable Skills?

Transferable skills refer to ones you need at any job at any time. You should have these skills whether you want an entry-level job at a factory or a c-suite position at an accounting firm. As you read about each one, take stock of how well you display every attribute. Write down a list of how you personify these skills and how you can demonstrate to a hiring manager that you understand them. Make sure to list these items on a resume to indicate you know the importance of each skill based on the job's qualifications.

1. Technological Competence

You must have some kind of knowledge of technology and technical skills. This is different from learning a computer program or coding. Demonstrate that you enjoy learning new technology and how you pick up on new software quickly by staying current with general tech trends.

2. Problem-Solving

Problem-solving includes the transferable skills you learned in school of using a targeted effort to arrive at a solution. You followed a problem from the beginning, researched it thoroughly, thought about a solution and made conclusions based on your knowledge of the problem. Analyzing a situation and using critical thinking skills are apropos to any job because companies want employees who can think outside the box to get past a problem.

3. Organization

You have to manage your time well and prioritize things every day and over the course of a long project. Some companies call this multitasking, but the point is you must determine things to get done first above all others before turning to more mundane tasks during your work day.

4. Communication

Communication is essential, and it takes many forms. You need to listen to your colleagues to formulate a response, you have to say the right things when asking questions or coming up with a solution, and you probably respond to more than 10 emails a day. Precise communication, both verbally and in writing, is a key to collaborating with co-workers.

5. Collaboration

Collaboration means getting along with your teammates to solve a problem. You might work with your own internal team, one from another department or people from another company to successfully complete a project. Employers look for transferable skills when it comes to working with others because achieving a goal is always a team effort.

6. Imagination

Imagination means finding creative solutions to problems. Creativity is the sum of your experiences, background and thought processes. You bring a unique perspective to a problem because of your time in college, how you were raised or your hobbies.

7. Leadership

Leadership abilities are complicated and take many forms, but they can lead to a dream job. Participate in active listening, emotional intelligence and planning to show you have this soft skill.

Changing careers doesn't have to be stressful, especially if you have these seven essential transferable skills. Once you take stock of your skill set, find out what to improve upon and go from there.

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles at


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