Do you wear Nikes? Adidas? Vans? Cowboy boots? Sandals? Shoes with heals? Flats?

As diverse as the shoes your peers wear is the diversity we need in cybersecurity professionals. We need your unique ideas and skills in the cybersecurity profession.

As there are many different styles, brands, and colors of shoes, there are many different areas in cybersecurity. Some are technical, some are non-technical.

NON-technical skills:

  • Management. We need people that know how to manage people. Leadership skills are in high demand.
  • Communication. Yes, this is a top skill. Practice now by ‘visiting’ with people of all ages. At family gathers, visit with your aunts/uncles. At the grocery store, visit with the checkout person. When you give a presentation at school, practice in the mirror the night before. Your communication skills will put you a notch above.
  • Negotiation. Do you need to ask your parents for something? Practice your negation skills. Think through the key points that make your request worth them listening to. As opportunities are available to learn communication and negotiation, take them. Does your school have an oral interp team or a debate team? These are great teams to be a part of to learn these skills.
  • Creativity. Thinking about a problem in different ways is critical. Original ideas and imagination are key to solving problems and moving cybersecurity forward.

Technical Skills:

  • Analytics. Solving problems through the analysis of data.
  • IT Knowledge. As information technology changes, cybersecurity workers are needing to understand the latest data-protection news, practices, and techniques.
  • Networking. Knowing how computers work together.
  • Programming. Understanding how to make technology work for us.

As you do not need to have every style or brand of shoes, you do not need to have all these skills to be a success cybersecurity professional. We need a diverse team.

No matter what color or style of shoes you wear, the cybersecurity field needs your skills. (I know skills do not = color/style of shoes, but you get the idea). Consider taking your skill set into this profession and take advantage of opportunities to hone your skills to reach your goals and dreams.