The Portfolio: A Great Precursor to Next Steps

Have you ever heard of the term portfolio

There are many different types of portfolios—creative, professional, and more! A portfolio is essentially a selection of one’s work that has been compiled over a period of time and used for assessing performance and progress. Think of a portfolio as a scrapbook of your career journey.  

As you are beginning your career journey, a portfolio is a great way for you to showcase what experiences you’ve had. If you’re a youth, you may wonder how and why a portfolio is applicable to you. Well, a portfolio isn’t just for a future employer, but it’s also a great tool for you! Portfolios can help enhance skills such as boosting self-esteem, decision-making, planning, organizing, and marketing. This is a great way for you to showcase yourself and discover what you’re passionate about.  

So, what do you put in a portfolio? 

Portfolios commonly contain contact information, a resume, and references. However, additional documents chosen to put into a portfolio are usually categorized into two areas: 

  • Personal management skills 
  • Teamwork skills 

Let’s explore each area in a bit more detail! 

Personal management skills give an employer an idea about your ability to be a reliable and dependable employee. Example documents include:  

  • High school transcript  
  • Letters of reference or recommendation letters 

Teamwork documents are an indication of your current and potential social skills, communication skills, leadership ability, as well as your interest in working with others. Examples of teamwork include: 

  • Certificates of achievement, leadership and participation from extra-curricular activities
  • Photos of you running a club meeting or participating in a community service project 
  • Accomplishments from team sports or demonstrations 
  • Youth group or civic group involvement 

Now that you have your portfolio, you can use it in college or job applications and more! This portfolio overview focused more on getting youth started in next steps after school. Remember that there are many different types of portfolios you can put together and many different paths to pursue. If you’re a designer or are interested in a more creative career, consider putting together a creative portfolio of your work product. Some employers may even ask to see your creative/professional portfolio as part of the job application process.  

Portfolios are also an excellent tool for networking! Share your portfolio on LinkedIn or in Networking events so that people can learn more about you. You can also learn more about others through their portfolio!  

Remember that what gives a portfolio power and meaning is you. You are enough.  

As always, we wish you the best of luck in everything and hope that this post was helpful in your career advancement! 

*The portfolio building tips from the post were taken from the following resource

Want to learn more skills for job preparedness? You can email or click the following link to sign up for one of our career-success workshops where we go over important topics like interview prep, soft-skills, networking, and more! You can also check out our workbooks to further develop your skills on your own.