How skills development can advance your career

Spread the love

If you have worked in the same professional role for several years, the risk is high that you feel that you are not progressing in your career. You are simply in need of something new, a change where you feel you can develop as a person and colleague. It’s easy to start looking at what other employers have to offer, but it can be smart to start looking at skills development first.

This can give you an opportunity to learn new skills and develop in your work, while also gaining experience in areas that could be useful if you were to change jobs.

How can you develop at work? We have the details of different kinds of skills and how you can develop them.

What is competence?

Competence is your prerequisites to perform your job in the best way. When you get a job interview, the employer has evaluated your skills and assessed that you are the right person for the job. However, the skills you need in the workplace can change over time when new technologies, laws, requirements or tasks are introduced.

The purpose of competence development is to ensure that employees acquire new competences or build on existing ones when the requirements in the workplace change. The word is usually used for development that takes place during working hours or at the expense of the employer, although you can also develop on your own outside the workplace, for example by applying for support for various courses if you are unemployed.

These are some examples of skills development:

  • courses
  • mentorship program
  • coaching
  • workshops
  • conferences
  • seminar
  • case studies
  • study visit
  • work rotation

Benefits of skills development

Although skills development has advantages for both the employer and the employee, the advantages for you as an employee are more immediately tangible. They include:

  • stay up-to-date on new developments, for example new technology or new regulations in your industry
  • improve your job performance
  • qualify for new tasks and new positions
  • increase your job satisfaction by developing as a person
  • fulfill requirements for your professional license or identification
  • meet ethical obligations to stay up-to-date in the industry
  • create new contact through networking
  • strengthen specific skills, for example leadership skills

Competence development often has benefits for society as a whole, especially when it comes to occupations that require a license or credential. In such cases, there are often requirements for specific courses to renew it, for example so that healthcare professionals can stay up-to-date with new knowledge to best treat patients, or engineers can design safe buildings with new technologies.

How do you get skills development?

The development is usually paid for by the employer who has a vested interest in investing in their employees so that they have the skills they need to do the job. You can either undergo up-skilling, where you learn new skills to cover gaps in your skills, or re-skilling, where you are trained for new positions in the workplace.

Some union agreement  also require the employer to pay for this, either indirectly, by saying you have the right to develop new skills, or directly, by requiring specific hours.

A natural opportunity to bring up the subject is during your development interview. Come prepared with ideas about what you want to learn, how it will help you do your job better, and what the company stands to gain from it.

It may happen that your employer does not agree with you that the courses you want to take are beneficial for you and the company. You can then discuss other ways for you to develop your skills. If, however, your employer does not want to offer any skills development at all, you should contact your union.

However, if you have specific courses you want to take that the employer does not want to approve, or if you are unemployed, there are some other options:

  • free courses at folk high school, college or university
  • transition support from CSN if you meet certain conditions and are in the middle of working life

Competence examples of knowledge important in many industries

There are many skills that are useful in different industries and professions, both hard and soft skills. Some of the skills most in demand on the labor market are digital skills.

Courses in soft skills can also strengthen your position as a candidate in the future. It gives you concrete evidence that you have experience in those areas, which you can use to include soft skills when writing your CV cover Letter.

If you work in a position where you have influence over the operations of the workplace, for example as a manager  , buyer  or Business Developer  , sustainability issues are also in demand because they are becoming increasingly important in building the company culture  and thus the company’s brand. Expertise in sustainability issues can also give you more clients if, for example, you work as an engineer or architect.

These are some examples of requested skills:

  • Computer programs such as the Office suite
  • To communicate via Social Media  , which you can learn on diploma courses
  • smart industry and digitization , which you can learn at general universities, for example
  • public speaking techniques
  • soft skills, for example increasing motivation  and focus and managing stress
  • Body language and commination
  • Leadership skills to motivate and inspire employees, which you can find, for example, on the Leaders website

Competency examples for some of the most common occupations

These are some examples of courses for some of Sweden’s most common occupations:

  • Nurses and other staff in healthcare: ethics in healthcare, digitization of healthcare, care of dementia patients, common healthcare conditions, pharmacology, leadership in healthcare
  • Engineer : Automation, energy systems, sustainability, additive manufacturing
  • Teachers: Assessment and grading, career planning for newly arrived adults, documentation, digital skills, distance learning, sustainable development
  • Nanny : Pedagogy, communication, rhetoric, health, stress management

Leave a Comment

Share via
Copy link