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Upskilling & Continuing Education

5 unique skills that will expand your career opportunities

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Elevate your career journey with the University of Calgary Continuing Education, harnessing the power of five unique skills to drive impactful change and unlock new prospects

Every day, we use many of our skills without giving much thought to intentionally cultivating and enhancing them. We have several non-technical skills that we apply daily, like when we make plans, solve problems and deal with challenging conversations. While these are often strengthened through experience, it takes learning better strategies to enhance them effectively.


Undoubtedly, non-technical skills are essential for getting – and keeping – a job, but they are even more powerful for growing our career. Furthermore, employees that have certain unique skills are in a better position to spot potential opportunities and be noticed by their employers and others.

Here are five unique skills that can set you apart and expand your opportunities:

1. Empowering others

Empowering others involves giving people the support and autonomy to make decisions, take initiative and grow. This skill can achieve a greater impact on relationships and workplace culture and be an influential power for career growth.

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2. Openness to change 

Adapting to change isn’t a skill that comes easily for everyone. However, it is essential to be able to adapt to our constantly changing environments. People who can actively embrace and implement change are more likely to spot opportunities for growth and have the confidence to take a leap of faith towards better prospects.

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3. Self-awareness

Self-awareness is the ability to objectively recognize and understand our own thoughts, feelings, behaviours and motivations. By intentionally increasing our awareness of self, we are better able to handle stress, make decisions, strengthen relationships and embrace opportunities for growth.

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4. Strategic thinking 

Strategic thinking is the ability to effectively plan by evoking ideas, preparing methods of action and considering challenges. Strengthening our strategic thinking skills can improve work results and be valuable in planning and achieving career goals.

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5. Growth mindset 

A growth mindset is the concept that our abilities are flexible, and we have the capability to learn and change for better outcomes. Developing a growth mindset takes knowledge and effort, but it is a highly sought-after skill by many employers and a powerful tool for approaching new opportunities.

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Looking to enhance these skills and expand your career opportunities?

University of Calgary Continuing Education has over 60 courses that can help you enhance your skills and advance in your industry. The Professional Certificate for Emerging Leaders allows individuals to take seminar courses that focus on the specific skills they want to learn, while also teaching the top skills employers are looking for. Many of these courses go beyond the basics and include distinct approaches for students to learn and apply these skills in their life.

Change can spark with just one course.

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