Do something different in the holiday break

So exams are getting underway –  maybe even over for some of you lucky ones. Such a sense of freedom!

After completing your last exam you have at least three weeks ahead of you study free. Yay, a well deserved break. But once you’ve lolled around for a few days, how about using some of the time to build on your employability skills?

https://www.aut.ac.nz/study/study-options/future-career-sheetsThis doesn't have to involve attending workshops (although some will be running if you are interested). What I'm talking about is volunteering and/or getting work experience.

Don't groan...... if you don’t have part time work you do need to be building up those useful life and employability skills or soft skills as they tend to be called by employers.

Why? Because they are the skills that will open the door to employment, along with your qualification.

Just today I heard - yet again - an employer saying that strong communication skills and the ability to work in teams are the skills that open doors to better higher paying jobs, once you have some experience behind you.

Volunteering or work shadowing someone really does help you build up those skills. It also gives you a great way to include something more concrete on your CV.

A CV that shows you spent xxx hours helping with a Gpeople chatting irl Guiding event or serving food at the City Mission or collecting rubbish on a beach with a group all sounds more authentic than saying ‘good at interacting with others’.

So - sermon nearly over - it only needs to be a couple of days of your holidays, or a bit of time around your part time or holiday job over the next month. Just think of something that gives you the experience of a new organisation, field or activity.

You will gain confidence, get easy practice in networking and communicating – and hey – you may even feel real good about yourself for having done something for your community.

And hey, there is always the possibility you could have a good time and meet interesting new people!

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