Your Voice: The pros and cons of hands-on experience
Jobs require it, but how does one gain the necessary experience?
Knowledge or skills gained from doing something – rather than simply reading about it, or seeing it being done – is known as hands-on experience.
Hands-on experience isn’t gained from studying or reading. It’s about practical experience – the difference between watching a cookery show or reading a recipe, for example, and actually making the meal yourself.
Hands-on experience is well respected and often valued more higher than understanding something in a more general way. Many job advertisements state that applicants need hands-on experience before they’ll be considered for the position. But gaining hands-on experience can be challenging – particularly in new areas.
How do you have the practical experience to do something if you’ve never done it before?
Sometimes, it may be necessary to put in time and effort without material reward.
Perhaps find a mentor and ask to do some “work shadowing.” This may provide the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a safe environment, guided by an expert.
And gone are the days when training courses and programs are purely theoretical. Many now provide an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in new and exciting fields.
If a career move requires practical hands-on experience that you don’t already posses, consider giving yourself some time to move out of your comfort zone and add new practical skills to your repertoire. With this mindset, far fewer jobs are out of reach.
Your Voice reflects the thoughts and opinions of the writer, and not necessarily those of the publication.