Let’s Start The Conversation: Part 5

A community member recently asked
“While I worked in the family business for years, there was no title for what I did. I am self-taught in most things and have no qualifications”

Here are some pieces of advice for someone in this situation:

Identify Your Skills and Experiences:

Make a list of all the tasks and responsibilities you handled in the family business.

Identify the skills you used and developed while performing these tasks (e.g., customer service, inventory management, bookkeeping).

Create a Functional Resume:

Use a functional resume format, which emphasizes skills and experiences rather than job titles and chronological work history.

Highlight your skills and how they were applied in your work.

Leverage Your Self-Taught Knowledge:

Highlight any specific knowledge or expertise you have gained through self-study.

Consider mentioning any projects or outcomes that demonstrate your competence.

Seek Certifications or Courses:

Look for online courses or certifications related to your skills to bolster your qualifications.

Platforms like Back To Work Connect course directory, Springboard+ LinkedIn Learning offer affordable options.

Network and Seek Recommendations:

Reach out to former colleagues, clients, or business partners who can vouch for your skills and work ethic.

Networking can open doors to new opportunities and help you get recommendations.

Tailor Your Job Applications:

Customize your cover letter and resume for each job application, emphasizing the skills and experiences most relevant to the position.

Be honest about your background but focus on how your unique experience makes you a valuable candidate.

Practice Your Pitch:

Prepare a clear and concise explanation of your background and how it equips you for the roles you are applying for.

Practice answering common interview questions to build confidence.

Show Willingness to Learn:

Demonstrate a proactive attitude towards learning and adapting to new environments.

Mention any ongoing efforts to improve your skills or knowledge.

Consider Internships or Entry-Level Positions:

If you’re struggling to find a role that matches your experience, consider internships or entry-level positions to gain formal experience and qualifications.

Use Online Portfolios or Personal Projects:

If applicable, create an online portfolio showcasing any personal projects or work samples that highlight your skills and achievements.

By focusing on your strengths, being proactive about learning, and clearly communicating your value, you can effectively navigate the job market despite the lack of formal titles and qualifications.

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