8 Ways to Maintain Skills for a Job

by McKenzie Chapman   Ulticareer  | Goals  | Job search  | Advice  | Work tips  | 

Not all of your skills will be employed at your job all of the time. You may find you never use some of your skills. But it’s important to keep them sharp. Here are a few tips on how to maintain good skills for a job.

1. Educate yourself on the new skills developing in your field

You’re never done learning. This applies to all aspects of life, including your work skills. You’ll be learning new things on the job all the time and naturally growing. However, you also have to take the initiative to educate yourself. You have to learn how to be a trend-spotter so you can be ahead of the crowd. This means reading up on industry news, subscribing to relevant alerts through push notifications on your phone or email, reading books, attending conferences and lectures, and taking classes to learn new skills are all part of your continuing education to keep your work skills fresh.

2. Projects

One of the best ways to keep your skills sharp is to put them into practice. Take on projects, either at work or side projects, which keep your skills honed. Even if there is a project that has aspects that requires skills you don’t yet have, you should tackle it and learn through practice. It’s the best way to learn.

3. Interpersonal and communication skills

Some skills are things that may seem natural, or are just things that you develop while working, these are called soft skills. Interpersonal and communication skills definitely fall into this category. A lot of times we learn how to communicate effectively by drawing on cues from other people that have more experience. But to really reinforce these skills, you should reflect on how you’ve grown. Be aware of how you act, and pay attention to what works. When you know what skills you have, then you can work on bettering them.

4. Check out the list of skills on LinkedIn profiles of other people in your field

If you’re feeling like you don’t know where to start, or you’re not quite sure where there’s a discrepancy in your skills, check out LinkedIn. On LinkedIn you can view other people’s profiles with similar jobs. On their profiles, they’ll list skills they have. There may be something there that you feel you can learn or practice.

5. Leadership

Leadership skills are some of the most important skills you can have. Better yet, they’ll transfer to any job you may have. Being a great leader means you’re organized, efficient, fair, and a great listener, among other things. If you want to practice being a leader, ask if you can take on more responsibilities, like leading projects, and speak up when you want to take initiative.

6. Critical thinking

Think outside the box, using what you learn in everyday thought

Maintaining your skills is all about critical thinking. Critical thinking means you can take an idea, and apply it and challenge it in your everyday life. When you think critically, you can take an idea to a deeper understanding.

7. Volunteer

If you feel like you’re not able to practice all your skills at work, one way to put them into practice is to volunteer. You can stay sharp with your work skills, while helping out a cause you believe in.

8. Presentation skills

Presentation skills are another example of something that you can hone that is transferable not just to other jobs, but also to all aspects of your life. Maintaining this skill is all about practice. You’ll likely have to give many presentations through work. However, if you feel like you’re not getting enough experience for work, practice on your own! It’s also important to pay close attention to how other people present. Yes, you’ll be focused on their content, but notice how they organize their slide deck, how they hold their body, how they enunciate; what makes their presentation, and what can be improved on?

It’s important to keep desirable skills sharp; you never know when you’ll need them. Hopefully with these tips you’re well on your way to practicing your employment skills.

Do you have any additional tips? What are the required skills for your job? Share on UltiCareer’s survey and help people discover what type of skills they should be practicing. 

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