If you don't have the wherewithal, you don't need the why.
April 13, 2011 5:25 PM Subscribe
been able to convince employers that your transferable skills make you a good hire?
posted by Nomyte to Work & Money (16 answers total) 46 users marked this as a favorite
I'm a BA-carrying research assistant in cognitive neuroscience with three years of experience. I'm looking for a way out.
The skills I have developed over the past few years are extremely specific to the kind of projects I support (academic research using EEG and MRI). They sound useful in many industries when I talk about them in general: data collection! statistics! scientific programming!
For the last couple of months, I've been talking to employers about jobs where I could make myself useful. I'm having a hard time convincing interviewers that my "transferable" skills are actually relevant to them.
None of the (entry-level) jobs I've applied for are exactly what I do now. They combine research and technical duties in various proportions, but each job requires me to tell a story about how my existing skills qualify me for it. Interviewers get skeptical. My lack of direct experience gets cited.
- How did you parlay your transferable skills into a job?
- How similar were your existing skills to the job requirements?
- How did you convince your interviewers that you're not "reaching" to sound relevant?
Not looking for: fabricated stories from books about parachutes and cheese. I'm also not interested in laments about the "hundreds of applicants for every job." This is demonstrably false — my employer struggles to get 3-5 applications for PhD-level positions and 8-10 applications for positions that require a bachelor's degree (in psychology!) and no experience.