Skill Portability: Representative Skills and Portability

(9/17/2016 – These posts have been expanded in a book, Skill Portability: A Guide To Moving Skills Between Jobs)

So we’re discussing how you can port skills from job to job and career to career.  I use the acronym DARE to represent the different kinds of Skill Portability – Direct, Advantageous, Representative, and Enhancing.  I’ve already covered Direct and Advantageous, so it’s time to get to Representative.

There are some skills that really don’t matter to the job.  They may not even provide any advantages.  They could be irrelevant, they could be in your past, they could be from a previous career.

Think of the skills that you leave behind when you move up in the world.  Project Managers that were once Engineers no longer program.

Think of the skills that change when you switch professions.  That old software package you used at one publisher isn’t used at the new one.

Think of the skills that change with time.  Those computer language that no longer are the hip thing to write in, the database no one uses, the vendor long gone and bought out.

These skills and knowledges sound useless, left to the necropolis of past careers and past experiences, but they’re not useless it all.  They speak of what you did, of how you got where you are.  They tell stories of who you were and what you became, and the speak, in a way of what you may be.

In short, they’re Representative of who you are and of your career and life trajectory.  They speak of you – you just don’t use them anymore.

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