Know Your Work Skills

A skill is being able to do a certain task. Examples of skills:

  • Having good people skills means that you can get along well with others.
  • Someone with mechanical skills can fix things well. They are also able to learn how to fix new things.

Skills are learnable. You can gain or expand skills with practice or training. That's why it's important to assess your skills at all phases of your career.  Some of your skills can transfer from one job to others. 

How do you know what your skills are?
First, do a skills assessment online. Or, you can talk with a career coach or go to your library for helpful resources. Visit the Career Development Center for additional resources.

You can also use the Occupational Outlook Handbook or O*NET Online. Look at occupations that interest you and look at the skills required. Do you have these skills?

Think about some of your favorite skills. Think about a time when you did something you were proud of. Which skills did you use?

Use the list of Common Transferable Skills below to help identify your skills. Then go to Match Your Skills to Occupations to write down your skills.

Common Transferable Skills
Skill Set Description Examples
Basic Skills These are skills needed by almost all workers. These skills are very important to have. Writing, for example, is a basic skill that gets you into a good job. Not having it can keep you out of a good job.
  • Learn new things
  • Listening
  • Math
  • Reading
  • Science
  • Speaking
  • Think critically
People Skills These are some of the most needed and wanted skills. They're sometimes called "soft skills." These skills help people to work well with others.
  • Be aware of others
  • Coordinate with others
  • Help others
  • Negotiate
  • Persuade
  • Teach others
Management Skills All workers need these skills, not just managers. Employers hire people who can keep track of projects, money, and their time.
  • Manage money
  • Manage people
  • Manage things
  • Manage time
Systems Skills Can you understand how parts and wholes work together? For example, could you see what would happen to your company if a certain employee left? Or how a new tax law might change prices at the grocery store? Then you have systems skills.
  • Evaluate a system
  • Evaluate an organization
  • Understand a system
  • Make good decisions
Technical Skills Technology includes computers and equipment. Computers are common in most workplaces. People in all occupations should know how to work with technology.
  • Choose tools
  • Control quality
  • Install equipment
  • Install programs
  • Maintain equipment
  • Check equipment
  • Operate equipment
  • Repair
  • Troubleshooting

Online Skills Resources

Career Planning ModelManage Your Career Create A Plan & Set Goals Expand Skills Explore Careers Assess Yourself Find A Job