What transferable skills does a teacher have?

We’ve all heard that teachers have transferable skills but what are they? When this subject comes up, most teachers will just shrug their shoulders and say that they don’t know because after all they just teach. Teachers seem to be very good at running themselves down and subconsciously accept the old adage “those that do, do and those that can’t, teach”. Most feel there is nothing that they can do outside of teaching.

 Just think through your day and see the roles you perform that are not only merely instructional. You are: a social worker, a police officer, problem solver, diplomat, team worker, nurse, solo worker, entrepreneur, leader and I’m sure you can think of many more. So that you can see that during your day you have to perform many different roles each of these has a wide and varied skill set. I really do believe it’s a case of translating your skills into the language recruiters use, then thinking of examples to demonstrate your proficiency in these skills.

Here is a list of some transferable skills.

Time management



Data analysis


Time management- He would not last a day if you couldn’t manage your time as a teacher. Each day you must hit at least five critical deadlines. You need to have prepared your lessons before hand about to deliver them at the appointed time your lessons have to start and finish on time then there are the deadlines new on a weekly basis reports equipment ordering and preparation for meetings. You have to be able to adapt your plans in an unpredictable environment.

Leadership- Even if you’re still a main grade your leader. Each day you have to inspire  a group of people to buy into your a vision for your classroom and the learning that takes place there. Then there is the leading of other adults in the classroom teaching assistants on care workers.  If you have experience as a some sort of role in the department or pastoral team then you will have had experience of performance management on line management.

Communication- This is the biggie for teachers. Your job is mainly communication, you communicate with the young people, other adults in the room, colleagues, management, parents and outside agencies. You understand how and when you need to be able to change the style of your communication to suit the audience. As well as strong verbal skills you are able message visually. Salespeople need strong communication skills but they have never had to settle down a class of year nine students when a wasp enters the room.

Data Analysis – At last something useful comes of all those hours looking SISRA, SIMS and other pupil data tools.  You understand Excel will have used pivot tables in fact you most probably could make a better database than the governments own Track and Trace response to the COVID pandemic. You can read data reports and identify trends, outliers and suggest areas for improvement.

Administrative- Some might say that these tasks take up most of the time as a teacher.  So this includes; data entry, report writing, lesson planning and assessments. These are all important administrative skills you have had to practise.

I could go on about the skills teachers have. The important thing is to not be afraid of relabelling the skills you have as a teacher and showing how they match another industry’s language. You just have to be creative about it. Demonstrating creativity, there you go that is another skill you need as a teacher.