The 3 Types of Skills You Should Learn

tl;dr — interface, production, and internal

Learn about the three main types of skills

Have you given much thought to the types of skills you’re developing?

We all want to increase our utility and effectiveness. To be seen as having certain skills. To be known for someone who’s good at something — someone who can get things done.

I recently stumbled upon a tweet that inspired me to take a closer look. Using this lens, we’re able to look at skills of 3 main types:

  1. Interface

This post is inspired by a short Twitter conversation I had

The Tweet

So instead of waiting, I decided to take a crack and writing it out.


These are the skills that make your other skills shine.

Basically, your very own “User Interface”, skills like communication (writing, social media, podcast, videos), personal branding (writing your LinkedIn / CV), networking (holding conversations in-person, over the phone, or video call), help you interface with your customers, investors, partners, team, and the rest of the world.

Quantifiable: 4 / 5 (but you can definitely *feel* the difference between a skilled vs unskilled interface).


These are the skills you have no problem showing on LinkedIn or your CV. They are mostly objectively testable and some even certifiable.

Quantifiable: 5 / 5 (we list these skills out all the time, they are very practical and often easy filters when recruiters begin their search)


These are “meta” skills that make you who you are.

These are your internal processes, systems, emotional intelligence, thinking skills (mental models), planning, organization… basically, anything you know you can do but is hard to show without having collaborated with you before.

Quantifiable: 2 / 5 (unless you have a superb interface that demonstrates your internal skills somehow) — more coming soon :)

And… there you have it, 3 main categories of skills you need to develop for a well-rounded and productive career.

Sharing my perspective on Startups, Tech, and Product. Follow my Twitter @ectsang