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Career Coaching by Former Fortune 500 Recruiters

How to Market a Liberal Arts Education

If you are a liberal arts major and the thought of working in Investment Banking, Global Markets, or Management Consulting catches your eye … fear not because all is not lost.  Yes, the business majors will have the edge having taken accounting, corporate finance, statistics, etc.  But you can catch up and you can sell your strengths and what they bring to the table.  These will most probably include:

1. Critical Thinking:  Liberal Arts grooms you to dissect thoughts, make parallels, see possibilities.  Having the ability to compare literature from different centuries and find common themes is a skill that can absolutely be brought to the workplace and I’ll give you an example:  you have to create a new program with the technology team to capture certain data.  You have an old program from 10 years ago.  You take the best of one program, create new processes with the new and you have an amazing tool. 

2. People skills:  Psychology comes into play every day in business. There are so many personality types out there:  Type A, Type B, abnormal….need I say more?  Business is all about getting people to work together and accomplish tasks.  The more you know about eliciting a response from someone the way Pavlov worked with his dogs can only help!

3.  Organizational skills:  Juggling Psychology, Politcal Science, Philosophy, Writing Workshops, and a Music Class absolutely keeps you on your toes.  One of my clients said that they were declaring a triple major in business because the classes they had to take for that triple major overlapped so much that it would be foolish not to capitalize on the common classes they needed to take.  Liberal Arts students have a very broad based education that includes very different and very interesting perspectives.

4. Communication skills:  I can’t tell you how many business majors simply do not know how to write.  During the entry level training programs we spend thousands of dollars teaching them basic business writing skills.  The liberal arts majors have a huge advantage here.  They write their thoughts clearly and efficiently and with solid grammar!

I think you get my drift.  Be proud of your liberal arts major because it has worth.  Sell it enthusiastically because you bring critical skills that business needs and simply cannot do without!

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