Career readiness is such an important concept in the field of career development, and by applying the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) 7 core competencies, you will grow as a future professional, and increase your career readiness levels. Our goal as career development professionals is to ensure that you increase your readiness levels for success. Prior to spring break week, I illustrated the concept of Critical Thinking/Problem Solving. Now, I am going to illustrate an integral competency that we utilize daily: Oral/Written Communications. Next, I will define, highlight, and provide examples of this competency.

According to NACE (2020), Oral/Written Communications is the ability to “articulate thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively in written and oral forms to persons inside and outside of the organization. The individual has public speaking skills; is able to express ideas to others; and can write/edit memos, letters, and complex technical reports clearly and effectively.”

An example of articulating thoughts and ideas effectively in writing would be how you write and form thoughts in your emails to professors and your current or future employers. You will want to ensure that your emails do not have any grammar or spelling errors and that they are written in a formal manner. When I was pursuing my undergraduate and graduate education, I would pay close attention to how others would write and structure their emails in order to strengthen my ability to write in a formal and businesslike manner. Most of the improvements that I made with writing emails, memos, letters or reports were through modeling others who had perfected their ability to write coherently and in a concise manner. My advice to you is to learn from your mentors, professors or an employer that will take the time to guide you with acquiring these skills. Do not be afraid to ask questions!

Public speaking is also a great example of this competency. At the present time, I can speak in front of large groups and not be timid or afraid. However, I was able to enhance this skill in my master’s program. I had a professor who supervised me when I taught career development courses at the university and when I had to conduct presentations. The more I practiced, the more I improved the skill of public speaking! I believe everyone can do the same if they set their mind to it. Another great organization that I would suggest in order to enhance this skill is Toastmasters. Additionally, there are student organizations that you could join in order to assist with building this skill.

I believe your ability to express ideas will be enhanced once you gain more confidence with your Oral/Written Communications skills. Practice expressing your great ideas to your peers and professors. Hopefully, you will realize that it isn’t so intimidating when it comes time to express your ideas to a future employer.

Career development professionals are also here to assist you with enhancing your written skills on both your resume and cover letter documents. You are able to book career advising appointments via Handshake and then receive your personal link to meet via Zoom from your peer career coach.

Reference Cited: 

National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). (2020). Retrieved from https://www.naceweb.org/career-readiness/competencies/career-readiness-defined/