ways to market your graduate skills in business and management.

This week we discussed ways to market your graduate skills in business and management.  Provide your own top 3 DOs and top 3 DON’Ts for marketing your skills.   Meaning, what are the three positives you will emphasize, and the three negatives you will remove or reduce from within your professional toolbox?

Instructions:  Your initial post should be at least 250 words.


Assessing and Marketing Your Skills


· Self-Assessment

· Goals and Competencies

· Collaborative Leadership

· Marketing Yourself and Your Skills

· Important Tips for the Interviewee

· Making the Transition

· Pursuing a Job in Logistics


In this lesson, we discuss the development of your own personal career marketing plan, whereby you will develop a reflective script for selling yourself to prospective hiring managers. The lesson is separated into seven sections designed to help you meet course Learning Objective #8: Explain professional growth attained during the master’s program or explain your professional skills to a potential employer.

The objective of this lesson, therefore, is for you to understand better your own job skills and how to sell those skills to prospective employers. If your next step is to obtain a doctorate degree, then this lesson will better prepare you for the application process and for choosing the right academic path of study.


According to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (as cited in University of University of Minnesota, 2017), the first crucial step is to perform a graduate skills self-assessment. The self-assessment will help you to gauge your skills, strengths, and areas that need further development. Some of the skills and strengths that are relevant to career decisions in research include: technical abilities (breadth and depth of expertise), writing skills, oral communication skills, organizational ability, leadership, self-motivation, decision-making, creativity, work ethic, problem solving abilities, knowledge (depth and breadth), perseverance, ability/desire to take risks.

Take a realistic look at your current abilities. This is a critical part of career planning. Involve your mentors, faculty, colleagues, family, and friends in the assessment process by asking them to identify your strengths and the areas you need to develop (para. 1).

Listen to what Chuck Gold, Leadership Coach for Champions for Growth, says about leadership skills versus technical skills.

Open file: Transcript

Goals and Competencies

Candidates for serious introspection must include a graduate student’s career goals: what short-term and long-term goals, what contacts have been made, what network opportunities might be a good fit. Next, assess your scholarly, professional development and job search competencies. For the job market, mainstay professional development competencies would include skills in the areas of presentations, leadership, and conflict management. Job search process skills would include what you would expect: resume building and formatting, cover letters, graduate portfolio, job and informational interviews, and networking.

Here is a list of professional development competencies that are pertinent to the process of interviewing for a job position.

List of elements important to job interviewing

Collaborative Leadership

A final focal point for the graduate student getting ready to market his or her services is the emerging area of collaborative leadership. Whether searching for a supply chain research position, a distribution management role or an industrial sales job, you will be facing collaborative endeavors (opportunities). Whether in collaborative transportation research, working or leading a distribution or warehousing team, or engaging with regional sales managers, you will be tested on your ability apply concepts, practices or methods in ways that your teammates and other professionals will understand. Moreover, you will certainly face group dynamics that require conflict management skills. There is no faster way to ascend an organizational hierarchy beyond professionalism and competency than by displaying the right teamwork and temperament. These traits are what senior management look for as they pick organizational shooting stars.

Marketing Yourself and Your Skills

A must-read site is the University of Minnesota’s Graduate School primer on marketing yourself (2017). The site provides the basics for starting the marketing process. Marketing yourself involves getting information about you to others. This can be done through a number of mediums.


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· Elevator Speech

An elevator speech is a brief and effective tool that can be used in a variety of settings. Learn how to create your own elevator speech and strengthen your networking connections.

Important Tips for the Interviewee

Nationally renowned career expert Sue Morem addresses key items that you must know well and practice when you are marketing yourself in an interview. These include never bringing a phone to the interview, interrupting the interviewer, or eating or chewing gum (on the negative side) and always coming prepared, knowing your resume, arriving on time, and practicing your pitch (on the positive side) (www.suemorem.com as cited in University of Minnesota Graduate School, 2017).

Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your predilection and mindset, getting a job is a stage play, and you are front and center. One must play the role that emphasizes one’s skills and attributes so that the interviewer can see your value to the organization. While what you did for the 3rd Infantry Division in Afghanistan was worthy of a Bronze Star, those skills must translate as a value-add to the new organization from which you are seeking an offer. For former military interviewers, this value-add is more apparent than it would be for someone not familiar with the leadership, teamwork, and sacrifice you might have made in a war zone.

Making the Transition

In Inside Higher Ed, Karla P. Zepeda offers that graduate students must cross over from being a graduate student to being a person with concrete professional skills. Of the advice she offered, two stand out as professional traits that must be mastered, both in the “when in Rome, act like a Roman” mindset (Zepeda, 2015, paras. 5 & 6).



Starting in grad school, practice professional values that impress employers. Your professors will write your letters of recommendations or they may refer you to specific job prospects; allow them to develop a positive view of you. It takes more than knowledge to land a job. Be smart about impression management. To this end:

· Ditch informal wear. Dress for the professional part you want to play.

· Keep your deadlines to demonstrate efficiency and dependability.

· Practice listening. This skill will make a huge difference in your interpersonal relationships. Even in interviews, people can fail to respond to questions because they are so eager to answer.

· Be discreet and respectful of others. Chatter, complaining, and gossip serve to form a view of the person engaging in such actions, not the information conveyed. You never know who will be a key player in your profession. Inspire goodwill, as it is an intangible asset.

Pursuing a Job in Logistics

Bottom line, be a value-add conformist initially, break through the entry wall, then use those skills to ascend the organizational ladder. This is how a major hirer of logistics professionals described the opportunities available to you, the logistics graduate:

Logistics careers cater to several different skill sets. Whether you like to crunch numbers, talk directly with clients, develop technology tools or monitor shipments online, logistics has you covered (RL Carriers, 2016, para. 2).


Here are some of the many types of logisticians that RL Carriers hires, along with a brief description of the positions.

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· International Logistic Specialists

Develop and operate supply chain service offerings, which include air, ocean, trucking and import/export service offerings.


This week, we discussed the development of your own personal career marketing plan, whereby you developed a reflective script for selling yourself to prospective hiring managers. We also conducted a structured self-assessment exercise and assisted in the development of a plan to market yourself and your skills.


Harps, L. (2003, February). What Makes a Logistics Leader? Retrieved from Inbound Logistics http://www.inboundlogistics.com/cms/article/what-makes-a-logistics-leader/

RL Carriers. (2016, August 10). Logistics: Why it should be on your career short list. Retrieved from RL Carriers http://hometown.rlcarriers.com/logistics-why-it-should-be-on-your-career-short-list/

University of Minnesota. (2017, March 20). Step 1: Conduct Self-assessment. Retrieved from University of Minnesota Academic & Professional Development https://www.grad.umn.edu/current-students-academic-professional-development-building-your-plan/idpstep1

University of Minnesota Graduate School. (2017, March 20). Marketing Yourself. Retrieved from University of Minnesota Graduate School https://www.grad.umn.edu/marketingyourself

Zepeda, K. P. (2015, January 5). 5 Professional Skills. Retrieved from Inside Higher Ed https://www.insidehighered.com/advice/2015/01/05/essay-five-professional-skills-graduate-students-learn


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