Assess Yourself

This step helps you discover, and organize all of your skills, interests, and values so you can find meaningful work. It is a good idea to do this step every year, even if you have a job, since you may have gained new skills, or your interests and values may have changed.

The following assessments are provided:

Know Your Work Skills

A skill is the ability to do a certain task well. Skills can be a natural ability and can also be learned over time. You can gain or expand your skills with practice or training. It is important to assess your skills at all phases of your career since you develop new skills at work, school, and through extracurricular activities.

There are different ways to group your skills.

Read over these skills and think if you have or need to gain any of them. Start your skill assessment by looking at these groups. Ask people close to you for feedback.

Common Transferable Skills
Skill Set Description Examples
Basic Skills
These are skills needed by almost all workers. Writing, for example, is a basic skill that gets you into a good job. Not having it can keep you out of a good job.
  • Able to follow directions
  • Able to learn
  • Able to listen
  • Able to remember
  • Able to write
  • Punctual
  • Honest
  • Math skills
  • Organized
  • Able to remember
  • Critical thinking
  • Decision making
  • Able to sort
  • Proactive
  • Able to work alone
People Skills
These are some of the most needed and wanted skills. They're sometimes called "soft skills." These skills help people to work well with others.
  • Empathic
  • Coordinate with others
  • Help others
  • Negotiate
  • Persuade
  • Teach others
  • Dependable
  • Cheerful
  • Conscientious
  • Cooperative
  • Patience
  • Diplomatic
  • Tolerant
  • Generous
Management Skills
All workers need these skills, not just managers. Employers hire people who can keep track of projects, money, and their time.
  • Manage money
  • Observing
  • Flexible
  • Courageous
  • Supervise people
  • Manage things
  • Manage time
  • Take directions
  • Give directions
  • Listening skills
  • Problem solving
  • Communicating
  • Researching
  • Planning
Technical Skills


Technology includes computers and equipment. People in all occupations should know how to work with technology.

  • Choosing tools
  • Quality control
  • Install equipment
  • Install computer programs
  • Check equipment
  • Operate equipment
  • Repair equipment
  • Troubleshooting
  • Painting
  • Welding
  • Helping patients or clients
  • Caring for a child
  • Playing an instrument
  • Processing X-rays
  • Filing
  • Arranging flowers
  • Cooking
  • Software knowledge
  • Typing

Online Skills Assessments:

Match Your Skills to Occupations

You should know what work-related skills you have and how good you are at each. Find occupations that match the skills you want to use. Know what your skills are so that you can talk about them with co-workers and employers.

How do you know what your skills are?

Use the list of Transferrable and Technical Skills on the Know Your Work Skills page, or use one of the online resources listed below to identify your skills.

Resources for Work Skills:

Career One Stop
iSeek Skills Assessment
My Skills My Future

List Your Skills and Match them with Occupations.

Use Match Your Skills to Occupations (pdf) to write down your skills. Also, write down 5 - 10 occupations that are a good fit with your skills. 

Match Your Interests to Occupations

Before you choose an occupation or start a job search, you should know which occupations match your interests. Picking the right job increases your chances of future job satisfaction and career success.

The Holland Code Interest Inventory (pdf) exercise is a short interest assessment.

Each letter matches an interest group.

Interests Online Resources:

Your Work Values

Job satisfaction comes from having a job that meets your needs and fits your goals. The Match Your Work Values to Occupations (pdf) includes things people often want or value in their job. Not all of these values will be met each day. However, choose an occupation that meets most of your work values and you are more likely to enjoy your job. You will also be more motivated to succeed.

Work Values Resources

Put Your Assessments Together

Look at the occupations you listed on the worksheets for each assessment. These include:

These occupations match your skills, interests and work values.

List the occupations that show up on two or three of your assessment lists in Occupations that Best Match All of Your Assessments (pdf). These occupations are a good place to start as you think about your next career goal.

Now that you have a list of occupations that fit your skills, interests, and values you are ready to begin Step 2: Explore Careers