5 transferable skills that shine in any job.

Let’s talk about some hidden gems that lie within you: those transferable soft skills that you might not have given much thought to. These are the skills that transcend job titles and industries, the ones that make you a valuable asset in any role you choose to pursue.

Ok, but why are they so important?

Transferable soft skills can be applied across lots of industries and roles. They are often contrasted with “hard skills,” which are specific technical skills required for a particular job. While hard skills are important, employers value soft skills because they are used in a wider range of settings.

Employers value transferable soft skills because they are essential for success in any workplace. These skills are often what make the difference between a good employee and a great employee and could be what sets your application apart from the others.

Great, but how do I develop my soft skills?

You’ve been developing them all your life, through social situations, school and work life. Here are a few ideas to grow your soft skills.

  • Take on new challenges: Step outside of your comfort zone and try new things. This will help you develop your adaptability, problem-solving, and teamwork skills.
  • Volunteer your time or join a group: Volunteering is a great way to gain experience in a variety of settings and develop your communication, interpersonal, and teamwork skills. It might be that you try temping to gain some new experience. For some inspiration, check out my blog 10-things-i-love-about-temping.
  • Take workshops, classes or webinars: There are many classes and workshops available, both online and in person, that can help you develop your transferable soft skills.
  • Seek feedback: Ask your colleagues, friends, and family for feedback on your skills. This will help you identify areas where you can improve. In fact, friends and family are often the best people to see you as you are and identify skills that you’ve overlooked.

Developing transferable soft skills is an investment in your future. Develop these skills for success in any career you choose.

5 transferable soft skills that shine in any job.

Communication

Communication is the cornerstone of any successful task, and it’s a skill that shines brightly in any job. Whether you’re crafting compelling emails, presenting your idea in a team meeting, or simply having a friendly chat with a colleague, strong communication skills ensure that your message is clear, concise, and well-received.

Problem-Solving

Problem-solving is like having a superhero cape in your professional wardrobe. It’s the ability to identify issues, analyse potential solutions, and implement the most effective one. Whether you’re troubleshooting a technical glitch (turn it off and on again?!), resolving a stock issue, or navigating a tricky customer situation, problem-solving skills make you the go-to person for resolving dilemmas.

Teamwork

In today’s collaborative world, teamwork is the key that unlocks success. It’s about working harmoniously with others, sharing ideas, and supporting each other to achieve common goals. Whether you’re discussing ideas with colleagues, helping to train a new person, or managing a team, strong teamwork skills make you an essential part of the professional puzzle.

Adaptability

They say change is the only constant in life, and adaptability is your superpower to navigate it smoothly. It’s the ability to embrace new ideas, adjust to evolving circumstances, and roll with the punches. Whether you’re facing a sudden shift in company policies or learning a new software program, adaptability ensures you thrive in a dynamic environment.

Time Management

Time management is the art of orchestrating your tasks and making the most of every minute. It’s about setting priorities, avoiding distractions, and accomplishing goals within deadlines. Whether you’re juggling multiple projects or managing a busy workload, strong time management skills make you a productivity powerhouse.

 

Depending on the job you’re going for, you might want to add some others. Initiative (acting without being told what to do), or interpersonal skills (building positive relationships with others) are great additions.

Leadership (inspiring and motivating others) and decision-making skills (making sound judgements based on available information) are highly valued for management or supervisory roles. Creativity (the ability to generate new ideas) is also a sought-after skill.

Don’t forget to give real-life examples.

These transferable soft skills are not just job requirements. They are the keys to unlocking your full potential and achieving success in any field you choose. Nurture these skills and let them shine.  You will pave the way to a fulfilling and rewarding career journey.

Remember, you should provide real-life examples of your transferable skills to make them meaningful. Don’t make them up, or you will get caught out at interview. Be honest and authentic, but don’t be afraid to be your biggest champion.

Here to help.

Our Octopus recruiters can help you work out which transferable skills are important to shout about. Ask about transferable skills in your next catch up or when registering with us. For more CV tips, try our blog on CV-success.

 

Anna Wiklinska

About the author

I’m on hand for our industrial and hospitality recruitment here at Octopus – think warehousing, production, construction, kitchen and technical type jobs. I also run our seasonal event work – this is a great option for those wanting to earn some extra money without commitment.

I really enjoy meeting our job hunters and helping them to find work. It’s been lovely to talk to local people and find out what matters to them.

Continuing Professional Development is a journey

Continuing Professional Development (CPD): A key to career success

Whether you’re just starting out in your career or you’re an experienced professional, continuing professional development (CPD) is essential for your success. CPD is the process of continuously learning and developing your skills and knowledge throughout your career. It can help you progress in your current job, find a new job, and stay ahead of the curve in your industry. You may not have thought about it, but odds are, you’ve participated in CPD in your work life – whether it’s the fork lift training you completed or an interesting webinar in your job industry.

My CPD journey

As a recruitment consultant, I’m always looking for ways to improve my skills and knowledge. That’s why I’m a big believer in continuing professional development (CPD).

I’ve always loved learning and self-development. Last year, I completed online training for one of our new clients and gained a certificate in Safer Recruitment to sit alongside our recruitment for local schools.  I wanted to push myself and develop further into my roles, so I subsequently completed a professional industry- recognised qualification with the Recruitment & Employment Federation (REC).  This course was challenging, but it was also incredibly rewarding. I learned a lot about the latest trends and developments in the recruitment industry, and I gained new skills that I can use to better serve my clients and candidates.

I’ve also completed several online courses related to my field. In December 2022 I decided to access CPD learning online from home, and I completed Level 3 certificates in Recruitment, and Human Resource Management.  I was thrilled to get a Distinction and a Higher Distinction in these areas.  My current project shows how useful transferable skills are if you think outside the box. I have just started an online evening course in CPCAB Counselling, which develops listening and communication skills, something that is absolutely crucial in recruitment, after all, its a people business.

I’m a strong believer that CPD is essential for anyone who wants to progress in their career. By continuously learning and developing your skills, you can make yourself more marketable to potential employers and increase your earning potential.

4 ways CPD can help your career.

  1. Improved job performance: CPD improves your skills and knowledge, which can lead to better job performance and increased productivity.
  2. Increased career opportunities: CPD makes yourself more marketable to potential employers. When you have a strong CPD record, it shows employers that you are committed to your career and that you are always looking for ways to improve yourself.
  3. Higher earning potential: Studies have shown that people who engage in CPD tend to earn more than those who don’t. This is because CPD can help you develop the skills and knowledge that are in high demand by employers.
  4. Greater job satisfaction: CPD keeps you up to date on the latest trends and developments in your industry. This can make your job more interesting and challenging, and lead to greater job satisfaction.

How to engage in CPD

There are many different ways to get involved in your CPD.

  1. Taking courses and workshops: This is a great way to learn new skills and knowledge. There are many different types of courses and workshops available, both online and in person.
  2. Attending conferences, trade shows and networking meetings: This is a great way to learn about the latest trends and developments in your industry, and to network with other professionals. It can be anything from a national exhibition to a local networking breakfast.
  3. Reading industry publications and blogs: This is a great way to stay up to date on the latest news and information in your industry. Follow people or companies you like on social media.
  4. Mentoring or coaching: This is a great way to learn from more experienced professionals or colleagues.
  5. Volunteering: This is a great way to gain new skills and experience, and to make a difference in your community.

Still not sure? Here are some great ideas if you’re in the office, industrial, and hospitality sectors:

  • Office: Take a course on Microsoft Office Suite, learn a new programming language, or attend a seminar on project management.
  • Industrial: Take a course on safety procedures or learn how to operate new machinery.
  • Hospitality: Take a course on customer service or learn a new language.

Start searching online or on your social media channels for ideas. To get you started, head to Money Saving Expert | Free ways to learn new skills at home for free ways to learn new skills at home.

My top tips for getting started with CPD.

  1. Identify your goals. What do you want to achieve with CPD? Are you looking to learn new skills, develop your knowledge, or progress in your career?
  2. Research different CPD opportunities. There are many ways to engage in CPD, including taking courses, attending conferences, and reading industry publications.
  3. Talk to your employer! Find out what the company can offer you. They’ll be really pleased that you are showing an active interest in improving your skills.
  4. Create a CPD plan. This will help you to stay on track and achieve your goals.
  5. Set aside time for CPD. It’s important to schedule time for CPD, just as you would for any other important commitment.
  6. Reflect on your CPD journey. Take some time at the end of each year to reflect on your CPD activities and assess your progress.

Show off your CPD.

When you’re looking for a new job, it’s important to highlight your CPD activities in your CV. This will show potential employers that you are committed to your career and that you are always looking for ways to improve yourself.

I love it when candidates tell me about any CPD they’ve done or are doing. It gives me extra ways to market you to our clients, and I’m often inspired to suggest jobs that work with your transferable skills. You can also mention your CPD activities in job interviews. This is a great way to show employers that you are knowledgeable and passionate about your field.

Don’t wait!

CPD is an essential part of any successful career. It can help you improve your skills and knowledge, increase your career opportunities, and earn a higher salary. If you’re not already engaging in CPD, I encourage you to start today. There are many different ways to engage in CPD, so you can find something that fits your needs and interests.

The important thing is to find activities that will help you improve your skills and knowledge and make you a more sought-after candidate to potential employers. CPD is an essential part of any successful career. By continuously learning and developing your skills, you can make yourself more marketable to potential employers and increase your earning potential.

If you’re thinking about starting a CPD journey, I highly recommend it. It’s one of the best investments you can make in your career.

If you’d like to talk to me about your CPD or career prospects, I’d love to help. Call for a quick chat or book an appointment with me for a more in-depth look at your options on 01747 825568.

 

Katherine Bending

About the author

I oversee the office and work from home jobs here at Octopus, including finance, sales, marketing, buying and admin roles.

The team are absolutely fantastic here at Octopus.  I love that the same level of care and support between our team is mirrored in our client and candidate interactions, which is what sets us apart as a brand.

5 ways to deal with interview rejection and plan your next steps

 5 ways to deal with interview rejection and plan your next steps

Have you ever received that dreaded interview rejection phone call or email? It can be tough, but Alice Weeks, Octopus Personnel Recruitment Consultant, explains why you shouldn’t feel dejected or disheartened. Instead you can use this experience to positively plan the next steps in your job search.

 

Any recruiter will tell you that the interview rejection phone call is a tough one to make – especially if the candidate has prepared well for the interview.  The way you handle interview rejection is just as important as the skills on your CV when it comes to securing a new role. If you allow interview rejection to knock your confidence and make you doubt your abilities, it could negatively affect your performance in future interviews.

So when you get that call, here are a few things to remember to keep you positive, optimistic and motivated, and help you plan what to do next.

5 point plan to deal with rejection and move forward

1. Rejection is not feedback

Whilst you may not have secured this role, that doesn’t mean that you did anything wrong!  At Octopus Personnel, we always follow up on interviews and give feedback to candidates.

Next step: Listen to what you did right (so you can do it again next time) and think about the areas that could be improved. Act on that feedback!

5 point plan to deal with rejection and move forward (2)

2. It’s not personal

It is very easy to take rejection personally.  However, most of the reasons behind hiring decisions will not be made apparent to you. You may have performed excellently but there could be other factors at play. For example, there may have been a strong internal candidate who is already familiar with the business, or another candidate with slightly more relevant experience than you. These are things you cannot change.  Focus on the positives you are given in the feedback, be aware of any advice in terms of areas to improve and move forward positively.

Next step: Revisit your CV to remind yourself of your strengths. Annotate your CV with examples that worked well in this interview.

5 point plan to deal with rejection and move forward (3)

3. A fresh approach

Approach each new job opportunity with a fresh perspective and a positive attitude. Tailor your CV to best match a new opportunity and fully research and prepare for a new interview. If you made mistakes or felt unprepared in your last interview – learn from this but don’t keep it at the forefront of your mind, it will only make you nervous.

Every company and hiring manager is different and will have a different idea of the ‘ideal candidate’. Keep a fresh approach while remaining true to your personality and experience.  Your Octopus Personnel consultant will prepare you beforehand with details about the interview and role. You can then support this with your own research about the company.  Put in the work each time.

Next step:  Start preparing for the next interview with the same commitment and vigour.

5 point plan to deal with rejection and move forward (4)

4. Keep learning and developing

Whilst that interview rejection phone call might not be the one you are hoping for, there are still things you can do to keep making a difference to your morale, motivation and employability.  A part-time training course or webinar, a charity project, mentorship or a voluntary position in a company of interest can keep your skills sharpened and your experience relevant and up to date.  If you are not working, temping can be an excellent way to learn new skills and add to your professional contacts.

By keeping professionally active in this way, you can aid ongoing development, boost confidence, give yourself a focus outside your job hunt and provide a discussion point in your next interview.

Next step:  Seek out other opportunities to keep your skills and experience relevant and up to date.

5 point plan to deal with rejection and move forward (5)

5. Always leave room for Plan B

Don’t pin your hopes on one specific job in the belief that it’s a perfect fit. If you don’t get that job, the rejection can be harder to take.  Think about each interview as a point along the journey to your next role. It’s also smart to pursue multiple opportunities, even when you are particularly invested in one role.

Next step:  Whilst you should tailor your CV and research for each role, you can apply for multiple roles at the same time.  Take an organised approach to make sure you don’t get the details of each role confused.

5 point plan to deal with rejection and move forward (6)

Have I convinced you?  What have you got to lose?

At Octopus Personnel, we are experts at presenting our candidates to ensure the employer is able to see all the skills and experience you are bringing to a role.  Years of industry expertise and outstanding relationships with our clients means that we are perfectly positioned within the market to guide you to your new role and interview success.

You can sign up here or call the team on 01747 825568 to set up an appointment to register with us.

 

 

 

 

Alice Weeks

About the author

I specialise in temporary recruitment and I’m always planning ahead, but manage to fill those last minute gaps! I really enjoy the buzz of the Octopus Office and no two days are the same. For me, it’s really important to get to know my candidates so I can support them on assignments and get the best from them.

I love baking so working in the Octopus Office with a monthly bake-off is a dream come true. I am a great listener and I know the power of a well-timed cup of tea and a biscuit!