Develop Skills

Develop Skills and Competencies

Regardless of the industry, job title or level of position you are seeking, there are basic competencies that every employer will have expected you to have mastered. Not only do you need to find ways to develop and practice these competencies but it will be important for you to be able to share clear examples that demonstrate these in your resume and in an interview.

Choose a competency to learn more:


Recognize and capitalize on personal and team strengths to achieve organizational goals.

Sample Behaviors
  • Serve in a student organization or professional association.

  • Find opportunities to volunteer where you can lead a team in a day of service or coordinate activities.

  • Volunteering to take on a leadership position in a student club.

  • When working with others in any setting, motivate and inspire those around you by encouraging them and building mutual trust. Serve as a role model to others by approaching tasks with confidence and a positive attitude.

  • Plan, initiate, manage, complete and evaluate projects.

  • Seek out and leverage diverse resources and feedback from others to inform decisions.


Build and maintain collaborative relationships to work effectively toward common goals, while appreciating diverse viewpoints and shared responsibilities.

Sample Behaviors
  • Getting involved in the ASU community though clubs/orgs, class projects/research, part time jobs, and athletics.

  • Build strong, positive working relationships with supervisors, faculty, peers, and coworkers.

  • Find opportunities to work with others in achieving a common goals while appreciating diverse viewpoints and shared responsibilities.

  • Be accountable for individual and team responsibilities and deliverables.

  • Know that teams can operate in a variety of ways and across different mediums including in-person and virtually (Ex. utilizing Zoom, Google docs or Slack)

  • Effectively manage conflict, interact with, and respect diverse personalities, and meet ambiguity with resilience.


Clearly and effectively exchange information, ideas, facts, and perspectives with persons inside and outside of an organization.

Sample Behaviors
  • Ask appropriate questions for specific information from supervisors, specialists, and others while employing active listening.

  • Employ influencing skills by communicating in a clear and organized manner that others can easily understand.

  • Consider joining a public speaking group or student organization at ASU to practice communication skills in a variety of settings and with different audiences.

  • Seek out roles (such as customer service or on-campus jobs) that provide resources or services. This will help to build your verbal communication skills; whether in person or through virtual methods.

  • Inform your supervisor at your internship or work site that you're interested in leading a team project, client presentation, and/or staff meetings.

  • Carefully review all of your outgoing communication including email, text, internal channels, etc. to ensure it has a clear subject and message.

Critical Thinking

Identify and respond to needs based upon an understanding of situational context and logical analysis of relevant information.

Sample Behaviors
  • Find opportunities in your part-time work, classes, or other involvements to develop a ‘Plan B’ to deal with an on-the-spot issue. Document how you resolved the situation.

  • Take on a leadership role in your student organization where you can collaborate with others to solve larger issues and participate in more strategic planning.

  • Gather and analyze information from a diverse set of sources and individuals to fully understand a problem.

  • Be proactive in reaching your goals by scheduling time for tasks, anticipating needs and creating actionable steps for your work and projects.

  • Identify and respond to needs based upon an understanding of situational context and logical analysis of relevant information.

  • Accurately summarize and interpret data with an awareness of personal biases that may impact outcomes. (Ex. Students participating in research)


Knowing work environments differ greatly, understand and demonstrate effective work habits, and act in the interest of the larger community and workplace.

Sample Behaviors
  • Maintain a positive personal brand in alignment with organizational and personal career values.

  • Demonstrate dependability (Ex. report consistently for work or meetings).

  • Be proactive in your pursuit of meeting (or exceeding) the jobs expectations in performance evaluation.

  • Understand and demonstrate effective work habits, and act in the interest of the larger community and workplace.

  • Develop coping skills to manage setbacks and challenges with a positive and constructive attitude.

  • Reflect the office culture through taking note of colleague's attire, punctuality, and communication styles.


Understand and leverage technologies ethically to enhance efficiencies, complete tasks, and accomplish goals.

Sample Behaviors
  • Sharpen your skills – consider taking online classes for software programs or online systems that you are not currently familiar with but are relevant to your future career interests.

  • Consider listing out all the programs you are familiar with and use on a regular basis in class, at work or elsewhere.

  • Consider putting together a digital portfolio to highlight experiences and projects you have.

  • Create a remote work space that you feel comfortable utilizing for both coursework and future work.

  • Leverage your access to ASU's digital knowledge sources, for both your academic and personal success. (Ex. ASU Library, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Phoenix Business Journal)

  • Utilize videos and walkthroughs to quickly adapt to new or unfamiliar technologies.

Equity & Inclusion

Demonstrate the awareness, attitude, knowledge, and skills required to equitably engage and include people from different local and global cultures. Engage in anti-racist practices that actively challenge the systems, structures, and policies of racism.

Sample Behaviors
  • Attend multi-cultural events at ASU.

  • Familiarize yourself with university and community resource to advocate and show you're an ally (OUT at ASU, Sun Devil Civility, and Student Coalitions).

  • Partner with new classmates for projects instead of working with the same students each time.

  • Consider studying abroad to gain valuable experience. Employers often seek students who have lived or worked in other countries.

  • Learn another language to enhance your problem solving skills, critical thinking, and worldview.

  • Become an Empowered Bystander

Career & Self-Development

Proactively develop oneself and one’s career through continual personal and professional learning, awareness of one’s strengths and weaknesses, navigation of career opportunities, and networking to build relationships within and without one’s organization.

Sample Behaviors
  • Consider discussing your career goals with a career advisor.

  • Ask for new challenges at work, volunteer for special projects, or join committees to gain experience in addition to your daily responsibilities.

  • Use InterviewStream to practice questions that will increase your self-awareness and confidence.

  • Identify areas for continual growth while pursuing and applying feedback.

  • Always keep your résumé and LinkedIn profile updated so that you are ready for impromptu opportunities.

  • Keep a professional journal to help you identify the skills and experiences that bring value to your organization. Use these examples to professionally advocate for oneself.

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