Read What Color Is Your Parachute? Online

Authors: Carol Christen,Jean M. Blomquist,Richard N. Bolles

Tags: #Juvenile Nonfiction, #Business & Economics, #Careers, #School & Education, #Non-Fiction

What Color Is Your Parachute? (6 page)

BOOK: What Color Is Your Parachute?
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Look at your list and see which skills are can-do and which are want-to skills. Cross out your can-do skills—that is, any skills you
do but don’t really

Some teens ask if they have to be an expert to keep a particular skill on their list. No, not if you like using the skill and have a moderate amount of experience with it. If a skill shows up in three of your five stories and you like using it, keep it on your list. Remember, it’s always possible to develop your skills more fully through education, practice, or concentration.

Now, the really fun part: finding your best skills. Go back to the Skill TIPs list. Of the skills that you like to use and that you used in more than one story, select ten that you most enjoy using. Write each one on a slip of paper or sticky note. Look at each skill. Think about how much you want to use that skill. Do you want to use it often or only occasionally in your work? Place these ten skills in order from your most favorite to your least favorite. This can be hard, but give it a try. When you know your best transferable skills, you have an important clue for finding work you love.

Now, look at the top five: these are your best skills. They are an important part of your parachute. Write these five skills in the My Best Transferable Skills section of the
My Parachute diagram
. (If you want, use colored pens or pencils to add a little color to your parachute!)

For a quick summary of these steps, see the Identify Your Best Transferable Skills sidebar below.

  1. Review your list of skills used. Cross out skills you don’t enjoy using.
  2. Select ten skills you enjoy using.
  3. Put the skills in order from most favorite to least favorite.
  4. Look at your list of ten skills. The top five are your best transferable skills.
  5. Write those skills in the My Best Transferable Skills section of
My Parachute

Identify Your Best Self-Management Skills

In your stories, you may have some bits that don’t fit into the skill keys, but you think they might be skills. They probably are. You actually have three different kinds of skills.

Transferable skills
are also called functional skills. If something functions, it works. When you work, you’re using your transferable skills. The five stories you write and check off on the Skill TIPs list help you discover what your favorites are.

You can learn more about self-management skills and their importance to your future career by doing an Internet search. Type the phrase “self management skills” for your search.

Specific knowledge
are also called work content skills. These skills are what you must
in order to do a certain job or activity. In doing most of your interests or hobbies, you have to know skills specific to that activity. For example, in doing her community service project, Serena had to know enough about the sport of downhill skiing that she could show the various techniques to others. Specific knowledge skills can be in interests you already have or ones you want to study further. You already filled these in under My Favorite Interests on the
My Parachute diagram
. It’s always good to remember that your interests involve specific skills that could be useful for your career!

Self-management skills
are also known as
personal traits. These traits describe the unique way you use your skills. Dependable, thorough, energetic, decisive, and compassionate are all self-management skills. For example, one of Serena’s traits is that she likes things to be fair. Serena thought the Down
syndrome students deserved the opportunity to have fun in the snow. Another trait Serena showed was commitment. Even though the students weren’t able to improve as skiers, she didn’t stop taking them to the snow.

To discover your self-management skills, reread your stories. What traits or self-management skills do you see? Write them on sticky notes, then organize them by priority, with your favorite first and so on. Write your top three self-management skills in the My Parachute diagram. As a young worker, you may not have many work content skills or specific kinds of knowledge, but if you are dependable, punctual, and work well with others, you may be able to get hired based on your self-management skills or traits.

Whew! You’ve done a lot of hard work in identifying your favorite interests and your best skills. We hope you had fun too. Maybe you learned something about yourself that you didn’t know before—or maybe these exercises confirmed something that you sensed, but weren’t certain of, about yourself. Now that you know what you love to do—your interests and the skills you love to use—let’s take a look, in the next chapter, at what types of people you like to have around you when you do what you love to do.


BOOK: What Color Is Your Parachute?
6.99Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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