62 Killer Transferable Skills You Have As A First Responder

Published by Nikki Paterson 2 min read
Career Planning Accomplish Education Skills

As a career transition coach with 20 years experience in law enforcement, I LOVE helping first responders transition out of Service. What makes me sad/frustrated/crazy-lady-on-a-soapbox? When I hear a first responder say, "I can't do anything else, I've been a copper for 15 years."

First responders have a plethora of highly transferable and highly sought after skills and at a level that just can't be matched in the civilian world. I nerdily get great professional and personal satisfaction from helping first responders see these skills and showing them how they map over into just about any role outside of first responding.

The list I've outlined is by no means exhaustive, I could have banged-on, drilling down into fine-grain skills but I've stuck to broad strokes and you should be able to use the below list as inspiration to get on a role and come up with even more.

Depending on your level and length of Service, the below list will have different application and meaning but all are transferrable to new industries and roles.

Before we get into the list, I just want to consider thinking differently about your work history and your transferrable skills. I want to challenge you to think horizontally instead of vertically – stay with me here.

When we work in a unique role or industry, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking about what we do rather than the skills we use to do those things. Before you read the below list, I want to challenge you to, instead of thinking in vertical silos or columns about the type of unique things you do in your role, think horizontally across those unique types of work and look at the skills you use to do that work – this is where the gold lies, these are your transferrable skills.

Yes, the context will be different, you’ll be using those skills in a different setting and role (that’s why they’re called transferable) but those skills you poses are well practiced and honed and performed at a level probably unrivalled by your competition.

The skills are listed in alphabetical order as opposed to order of importance, as the role you’re applying for will dictate what skills are more important – and hot tip, address every necessary skill (if possible) within your job application – please no generic resumes or cover letters. Some of the transferable skills are ....

      • Active Listening
      • Adaptability
      • Conflict Resolution
      • Delegation
      • Innovative Thinking
      • Leadership
      • Manage Complex Taskings
      • Project Management
      • Risk Analysis
      • Written Communication

To find the full list of 65 transferable skills and the article from Nikki Paterson click on the link below. 

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