We’ve all been there before, trying to format a graph in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet or getting a picture to fit right on a Word document. You may feel frustrated and confused-- but then, someone else in the office rushes over, makes a few clicks, and like magic, the program is doing what you want it to. As they head back to their desk, you admire them for their adapt skills. They are… the Office Hero.
Individuals that have the know-how to stay organized and make things happen are a sought-after commodity. Strong computer skills in the workforce have gone from a nice-to-have to an essential part of the workplace.
Along with being tech savvy, the workforce is now more focused on how work gets done. Skills like emotional intelligence, communication, problem solving, adaptability, and personal appearance were once considered ‘soft skills’, but now they are considered core abilities. Sadly, these skills are not innate in an individual. They have to be learned, cultivated, and developed.
Many people gain these skills in the circumstances they grow up in. For example, a successful contractor who grew up a foster child told me that he had to learn to “sell” himself to the families that were considering taking in a foster child. He learned how to read people and determine what they wanted. Sad as that may be, this skill translated well as he moved into his professional life. His life experience helped him be successful in his many career pursuits.
The faster the economy grows, the more individuals are needed to enter the workforce. People from all walks of life are beginning anew-- whether that be in a part-time job or a long-term career. To stay relevant or provide a better opportunity for themselves, a lot of them are looking for ways to update their skills, whether it be through the internet, returning back to school, or old-fashioned on-the-job training.
Each has their benefits and their limitations. Online learning can be convenient, but it can also seem too impersonal. Returning back to college to finish a degree is a great achievement, but it is expensive and time consuming. And OJT is neither impersonal or expensive, however, it is… well, no one likes to look like an idiot at work.
We all want to be like the Office Hero, the person that anyone can turn to for a helping hand!
At Idaho State University’s Continuing Education/Workforce Training, we want to help people become Office Heroes. Starting September 3, our Office Hero program-- which tries to help those that need some short-term training to update their skills and get them back in the workforce-- kicks off.
This program takes place during the entire month of September. It includes classes in Microsoft Word and Excel, emotional intelligence, resume writing, and interview skills. Classes are every day Monday through Thursday, for 4 hours a day for 4 weeks.
This may seem like a hefty workload, however, the classes are designed to be skill-building events where students have time to develop their skills through hands-on practice and application. The instructors act as guides to the students to ensure they are getting what they need.
If you’re interested in becoming an Office Hero, visit cetrain.isu.edu or call us at (208) 282-3372 to sign up. Hope to see you there!