Now is an excellent time to look for a new job! Employers across the country are desperate for quality candidates in almost every field or industry. As you reflect on your candidacy, you may be tempted to think that the more skill sets you have, the more marketable you are. However, Andrew Seaman, one of LinkedIn’s senior editors for job search and careers, disagrees. He argues that becoming an expert in one or two things is much more valuable to employers than being a ‘jack of all trades.’ So, how do you master one or two skill sets that will draw the eye of hiring managers? Here is the best way to become an expert in a field to boost your marketability.
Focus your energy on a single topic or two
First of all, it’s essential to pick one or two topics you want to master. It can be literally anything, from SEO to creative writing; whatever you decide, select an area of focus and pour all of your energy into it. BJ Fogg, author of the book “Tiny Habits,” explains that it only takes 40-60 hours to become an expert in an area. Start reading articles, watching videos on YouTube, attending webinars, and investing yourself in learning everything you can about the topic. Fogg says you can accomplish this in roughly three months; however, he cautions that you must be realistic with the skill set you wish to master. You obviously won’t become a brain surgeon in a few short months, but selecting a new skill set and honing it can be done in a reasonable amount of time.
Commit to the topic
Once you have selected the topic you wish to master, you must dive headfirst. Learn as much as you can about this area and connect with others about this newfound interest. Listen to industry thought leaders and let those around you know about your new goal to help share thoughts with you. You may be surprised what you can learn from a friend or colleague!
Implement your new knowledge
Once you have become an expert in this topic, it’s time to implement this new knowledge. Take what you have learned and apply it to your work. Find ways to utilize this new skill set and use it in your job. Learn new ways to utilize it to improve your workflow or tackle a new assignment or duty. Also, it’s important to share this new knowledge with others. You can do this nonchalantly by sharing articles on LinkedIn, engaging with other thought leaders, or adding new certifications to your application materials. You don’t need to brag about this new expertise to share it with others!
Focusing on one or two skill sets is an excellent way to make you more marketable to new employers as well as help you add more value to your current position. If you are looking for more ways to take your career to the next level, review our candidate resources!