Identifying your skills, interests & values

Successful career planning involves understanding your work interests, identifying key work related skills, and overlapping these with things that are important to you in the work you would do (work values).

Understanding what is important to you in life and work will underpin good career choices and effective job search strategies and will affect the satisfaction you feel in your work. Here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • what do I place value on, such as helping people,
  • ability to work flexibly, prestige?
  • where do I want to work?
  • what types of activities interest me most - those
  • focused on people, data or technical activities?
  • what organisations interest me?

It is also important to consider your strengths and the skills you enjoy using. The trick is to identify and know how to demonstrate them in an application or job interview. Some skills are especially useful for success in any career:

  • Specialist/technical skills and knowledge - these are derived from your area/discipline in which you have studied and other specialist skills and knowledge
  • Generic or employability skills
  • Career management skills and attributes - the skills that ensure you will thrive in changing work environments. They include decision-making, negotiation, ability to explore and create opportunity, cultural sensitivity, networking and adaptability.