Skills, Not Experience Leads To Promotion

Learning new skills from a variety of books

Technology is moving apace and jobs are changing with it. What you knew last year might not apply, and what you knew five years ago almost doesn’t matter. Increasingly experience is becoming more irrelevant, especially if one year’s experience has been repeated thirty times. And you can be certain that what you know today won’t be of any use in 2020.

Skills are where the action is.

Skills are what make you marketable in this job market.

Too many people let their skills slip, and with that reduces their contribution to growing their business and their salary. Increasingly, low skills mean Minimum Wage. Want to go there? Thought not.

And it’s not going to change anytime soon. Don’t fight it. You won’t win.

But there are some ways we’d recommend to keep your skills relevant – and you earning more:

  • Talk to your boss.

Offer to take some training that he or she can market to sell more, increase prices or make you more efficient. The more your boss can offer in terms of added value to your customers and to your team, the better that goes for everybody. Sell it right, and they’ll be happy to pay.

  • Go on YouTube, take a MOOC.

If you’ve only thought this the site was about kittens and idiots jumping off cliffs, think again. It is one of the best training resources there is – and it’s all free. MOOC might be a silly name, but Massive Open Online Courses like FutureLearn, offer paid options for accreditation and are a treasure-trove of knowledge you can put into action at no cost at all.

  • Be More Active on Linkedin

It is called social media for a reason. Follow others from your industry, get to know what’s going on, and find all sorts of advice and guidance. Again, it’s all free and easy (you don’t need to get Premium) – and what’s more, it makes you findable for your next job…or your next pay rise.

  • Read.

Read the Economist. Read blogs. Read the trade press. Read books. The internet has loads of great content, but don’t forget the library too, saving you spending money on a Amazon Prime subscription!

  • Listen to podcasts.

There are squillions of them. You can listen to them in on the move or during a quiet time in the office, as you can with audio books, especially on functional skills such as management or leadership, or hearing from experiences of other professionals.

  • Networking.

Network at free events, keeping up to date on industry news. Search through Eventbrite, you may be surprised at what you find.

  • Attend Webinars.

You could spend your life on webinars, there are so many of them. They can be industry specific and often set up so you can attend at lunchtime.

It does take some work on your part. It’s called “discretionary effort”, and it’s something employers and customers look for. It marks out those who are likely to go the extra mile – so I was lying earlier it’s not just skills that count.

Attitude has a value that differentiates you when you’re on a candidate short list – your skills can prove you’re hungry to learn more and progress… just so long as your skills are up to date.

Don’t let your skills slip. It’s hard to catch up when you neglect them. You owe it to yourself to keep your skills up to date and your earning opportunities higher.

Author:  Martin Ellis

07823 887982

Many thanks to Martin Ellis for this contribution. Martin is an experienced recruitment professional – and qualified engineer – working for the RSE Group, based in Battle, East Sussex.

To find out more about skills and productivity within your workforce or how Locate East Sussex can help your business email: or phone 0300 3435749.

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