Innovators and creatives

Several colourful lightbulbs

 

The icon for Innovators and creatives

Creativity is using your imagination to create new ideas, solve problems and think of new and unique possibilities. This is a skill you develop as you continue to learn and grow and use your imagination for various forms of expression. Innovation is the process of taking creative ideas and applying them for commercial and financial success. Since innovation is the application of creative ideas, both are interconnected to each other. An innovation can be a physical object, a concept to improve or creating a new process. Demonstrating your creativity though tangible ideas, plans and outcomes is a highly sought by employers as it shows both innovation and creativity skills.

Innovation and creativity
Reflect:
  • Do you have an open and adaptable approach – always looking for new ways of doing things?
  • When you have an idea, how do you make it happen?
  • How can you showcase your creativity or innovation?

In the next section you will see how you can develop this skill.

Develop your innovation and creative skills!

Here you will find some suggested activities that you can do to enhance your innovation and creative skills:

  • Research - the first step of the creative process is to gather materials and engage in specific study on the task or problem at hand. The process also involves more general research on the topic.
  • Mulling - Instead of trying to immediately force a clear solution to the problem, creative thinkers dive deeply into the issue and play with different ideas.
  • Take a break - Innovators tend to take a prolonged break from thinking. It may allow the research and mulling to bubble to the surface in the form of ideas.
  • Emerging idea - after a break, creative people will often have renewed insight. Words or images will combine correctly, a pattern will stand out or a solution seems to present itself.
  • Develop the idea - finally, creators will be able to build upon their idea and begin applying it to their work. Focusing on practicality, effectiveness, and appropriateness.

To learn more about employability and how to access opportunities to help you develop in this area, take a look at our employability booklet (aimed at new students) which provides all you need to know.

Demonstrate your employability skills

You will be asked to provide evidence of your skills through the job application and interview process – you can talk about where, when, why and how successfully you have used your employability skills.

We would recommend keeping a record of evidence of the skills you have developed so that you can refer to them when submitting applications or preparing for interviews. This Employability Skills Checklist can be a starting point.

Reflect:
  • What skills you are using during your study?
  • Can you record experiences as you go along?
  • Are there skills and qualities that you are struggling to evidence?
  • How will you maintain your skills audit?
  • Do you need to take action to bridge a skills gap?

 

Developing belief in yourself and your skills

 

How to best demonstrate your skills to employers

Be positive and relevant

  • Give examples of the most relevant skills first from your job, internship or work experience
  • Use confident language to describe your skills, for example, praise employers have given you.
  • Better to focus on transferable skills than routine tasks on your CV, gained through part-time jobs.

Sell your skills in different ways

These are just a few examples:

  • Social Media including a Linked-In Profile
  • Networking opportunities
  • CV, Covering Letters, Application Forms
  • Interview and Assessment Centres
  • Presentations

Think beyond common skills

Our Employability Skills are probably ones you are familiar with. But there are some you might not be familiar with, such as meta-skills. A meta-skill like a master skill – it's something that can help you in lots of different environments.

Think also about:

  • Subject skills e.g. Software, use of Lab equipment or research methodology
  • Talents and abilities e.g. Languages, drawing skills, athletic
  • Personal qualities e.g. Calmness, tenacious, creative, supportive

Match skills to your employer

Research the employer – what is their company culture? Look on their website and see what their company beliefs are.

Look at the job description you have. You should be able to find some of the employability skills they are looking for.

Use the STAR technique to help you relate the employability skills into your answers and examples. Read our blog post written by our careers adviser, Adam Taylor, on the STAR technique.

Speak to a careers adviser

Our Careers Advisers are on hand to help. Book an appointment on Advantage or by calling 0161 295 0023 (option 5).

Appointments are available for current students and graduates of the University of Salford only.