A skill refers to “…the ability coming from one’s knowledge, practice, and aptitude, among others, to do something well…” (Dictionary.com), while a value is “…a principle, standard, or quality considered worthwhile or desirable…” (Farlex).
When seeking for a job, both the right individual skills and the value one would give to the employer are essential attributes necessary for consideration. However, it does not always happen that one may have all the necessary skills and values. Therefore, gaps are bound to exist. Some of the gaps that may exist in my individual abilities include:
Lack of experience. Being fresh from school means that I do not possess the proper experience for the majority of jobs. This is because experience is gained directly through the work process.
Lack of the specialized training. Since some jobs require specialized training, I may be not fit to them yet without special practice. Therefore, this may hinder me from being employed.
Lack of technical skills. Different jobs may require certain requisite technical know-hows which I may be lacking.
Lack of good communication skills. Both my writing and presentation skills need to be enhanced.
Self evaluation skills. Since I am still studying, I do not yet fully comprehend what self-evaluation means in a job context.
Meeting the Employers’ Needs
These needs are diverse and include the following;
Interpersonal skills (tet-a-tet speaking). Being a good communicator means having the ability to make oral presentations to both the employer and the potential customers at any time. This requires good speaking skills and confidence. I can easily meet this challenge by engaging in speaking skills practices and conducting mock presentation sessions in class.
Flexible thinking skills (problem solving). Due to the complex nature of many jobs, a good problem-solver is always of value to the employer. I can achieve this by having a good understanding of my specialization area, reading appropriate literature and acquiring general knowledge.
Team work skills. Teamwork is established only when there is a group of people with similar goals and aspirations ready to work together for a common goal. To inculcate team work, I would require to learn to be tolerant and accommodating divergent views among my peers.
Cultural awareness and understanding. Cultures differ, and that is a fact. To better understand and be aware of different cultures, I would need to first accept that different people are related to various cultures. Respecting this fact and working towards creating harmony at my work place, regardless of the cultural differences, is something I would always do, so as to meet what is expected of me by my employer.
Self-evaluation skills (taking initiative). Learning to be pro-active is a very important skill as it enhances responsibility and reliability. To attain this useful skill, I would enhance my personality by tempering it through discipline. A strong, disciplined character does not shy away from taking leadership of initiatives.
Filling the Gaps (The Plan)
Stage 1 Stage 2
What are my gaps currently?
1) I lack proper job experience.
2) I lack specialized training.
3) I lack technical skills.
4) I lack good communication skills.
5) I lack on-job self-evaluation skills.
How do I feel these gaps?
1) Getting summer internships to acquire the relevant job experience.
2) Pursuing the right specialization.
3) Getting requisite technical skills in computers and information technology.
4) Undertaking mock class presentations and report write-ups so as to improve my communication skills.
5) Learning and understanding what self-evaluation is in job context and working towards improving it.
In What Ways Will an Increasingly Global Environment Alter the Skills Required By Your Chosen Career?
An increasingly global environment has the possibility of altering the way skills for different careers are spread currently in a major way. For example, most careers in Information Technology (IT) nowadays can be readily and easily outsourced from any corner of the world due to the availability of the Internet connectivity across the globe.
Globalization is creating ‘unprecedented uncertainties’ as a result of increasing access by the corporate businesses to a huge pool of global labor market and the ‘commoditization of intellectual property’ (Pan). This means that any employer operating from any part of the planet can access the desired labor force from any other corner of the world. This creates distortions in the local manpower supply systems since most employers would naturally go for the cheap labor markets.
This explains why many businesses in the developed countries are shifting their operations to the less developed countries in order to reduce operational costs through out-sourcing or off-shoring.
Therefore, to remain competitive, I would choose to go for a career that would be easily marketable both locally and internationally. And to do this, I need to gain the essential skills that may include learning one or several other international languages apart from English, learning how to effectively use IT in my career and understanding the right careers that the world needs currently among other things.
I have participated in team work both in class and at home. In class, I have participated in teamwork when engaging in group assignments and at home while undertaking community activities. One thing I have learnt is that teams should always be composed of individuals with diverse backgrounds and diverse approaches. Therefore, this diversity can be an asset or a liability, depending on the situation at hand.
Team work can be an asset considering that the diversity of opinions and approaches can lead to the individuals having their ideas meet at a central point through comprise. A compromise position creates harmony and mutual understanding and a sense of belonging in each team member.
However, divergence of opinions may bring unnecessary conflicts and delays in implementing a set task. Competing interests and personal egos can sometimes override the common interests, resulting in delayed results compared to individual approaches to an issue. The most important principle in such a situation is to be devoted and ready to give as much as he/she would want to take from others. That is what keeps a team always going and establishes the sense of team spirit.