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Planning Your Future:

“Know Your Strengths”

Transferable & Functional Skills:

Transferable and functional skills are competencies that are transferable to many different work
settings. You can develop skills in a variety of ways, including from jobs and internships,
coursework and school projects, volunteer and extracurricular activities, hobbies, and from daily
life responsibilities.

Below is a list that will help you acknowledge the skills you have used, the skills you would like
to use, and the skills you would like to develop.

From the following list, underline the skills you have used, and then circle the top 3 to 5
underlined skills you enjoy using most from each category.

Communication: Exchange, convey, and Information Management: Arrange and

express knowledge and ideas. retrieve data, knowledge, and ideas.
write calculate and compute
edit classify and catalog
summarize math knowledge and skills
persuade applying formulas
verbal communication financial record keeping
listen attentively organize information
facilitate discussion manage information
consult manage money
teach keep accurate records
train attend to details
sell logical ability
promote develop systems
use of languages develop a budget
communicate with metaphors categorize
interview summarize
mastery with words streamline systems & processes
ask questions monitor
make presentations manage databases
think on one’s feet Organization Management: Direct and guide a
conversational ability group in completing tasks and attaining goals.
entertain, perform solve problems
host time management
interact with public make decisions
public speaking lead
teamwork plan ahead
serve as a liaison meet deadlines
establish priorities
Organization Management: (cont.) Research & Investigation: Search for specific
recruit knowledge.
resolve conflicts analyze ideas
collaborate analyze data
mediate dissect
initiate projects research
forecast investigate
organize read for information
coordinate interview for information
handle logistics collect data
put theory into practice diagnose
delegate evaluate
give directions compare
assume responsibility critical thinking
determine policy synthesize information
interpret policy experiment
apply policy observe
set timelines and expectations outline
strategize formulate hypotheses
implement plans develop theory
evaluate outcomes calculate/compare
create team hypothesize
visualize end result
set goals Human Service: Attend to physical, mental or
social needs of people.
Design & Planning: Imagine the future and facilitate
develop a process for creating it. interpersonal skills
anticipate problems group process
plan sensitivity to needs
invent empathize
conceptualize encourage
design empower
display consult
layout/format interview
design programs counsel
anticipate consequences advocate
brainstorm new ideas use intuition
think visually coach
improvise provide care
compose coordinate
adapt listen
create images advise
integrate support
synthesize Technical/Physical: Use hands or tools to build,
customize repair, and invent.
illustrate assemble
perform build
Technical/Physical: (cont.) invent
model operate equipment
program repair
install restore
maintain use physical coordination


Write about each skill you have circled.

Past: How have you used this skill in the past? Recall the “situation, task, actions and results” in which you used
this skill. Where there other skills you used to help accomplish the skill you are writing about.

For example, the skill “write” under communication what have you written? What others skills: “edit”,
“communicate with metaphors”, “research”, “synthesize information”, “interpret policy”, etc.; did you use to
complete the task at hand?

Future: How do you imagine using this skill in the future? Envision the situation, task, actions and results”
in which you would use this skill. Are there other skills you imagine using to help accomplish the skill you are
writing about?

Socrates is reported to have said, “the unexamined life is not worth living”. For employers, “the
unexamined applicant is not worth interviewing”. It is essential in career exploration that individuals do
the most they can to clarify and describe the skills they have so they can move forward with what they
have to offer to an employer.