The job market is competitive. You may feel like it takes a miracle to get called into an interview. Then, even if you are lucky enough to get an interview, there are times it doesn’t go the way you’d hoped.
Even if you consider yourself perfect for the job, it can be a real struggle to prove that to your potential employer. When you first meet, you just have a piece of paper highlighting your skills, after all.
Could it be that you need to look closer at the skills you are highlighting?
You may have certifications, degrees, and accomplishments that any employer considers valuable. These are all hard skills.
Employers are looking for candidates with these hard skills as well as valuable soft skills. Soft skills are those that you can’t prove with a diploma. They take ethics, personability, and emotional intelligence into account.
This article will explain the three top soft skills that all employers want in a new hire and how they can help you land a job.
1. Communication Skills
The lack of communication in the workforce causes a LOT of problems. For this reason, employers want to hire people who have this down pat.
There are many types of communication, and excelling at them all should be your goal if you want to land the job.
Written Communication Skills
Every office requires some sort of written communication. Whether it’s writing out a sales report or morning updates, you are valuable if you communicate them well.
Many people in the workforce struggle with what is and what is not appropriate when writing a work email. Therefore, it’s essential you follow proper etiquette rules, so you never have to question your ability.
It’s also helpful to be able to write good notes about a shared project. This will allow you to collaborate more effectively with other employees on the team.
Verbal Communication Skills
When speaking to others at work, you need to know where to draw the line. Be friendly but professional and try not to take over conversations.
Learn to speak concisely. Time is money is an adage for a reason. No one wants to sit through a drawn-out, wordy, and confusing explanation.
Speaking with confidence can also help those around you to believe what you say and helps to get the point across.
Everyone can listen to someone talk, but active listening requires skill. To practice active listening, you should try to identify critical points.
It also involves asking the right questions based on what someone tells you. It also includes reiterating what you heard to ensure you are on the same page and there are no miscommunications.
Nonverbal communication skills include being able to read body language and conveying the correct body language.
Body language includes your posture, how you move your body, and even facial features.
Good nonverbal communication includes maintaining eye contact and a relaxed stance.
Communication can be a non-combative way to improve morale in the workplace. To practice friendly communication, you need to avoid unnecessary friction.
Keep these tips in mind to always communicate in a friendly manner:
- Do what you can to keep the lines of communication open.
- Show your workmates empathy and respect.
- Remember to keep an open mind.
- Allow individuals to be unique in their thoughts, emotions, and way of life.
You test your aptitude for friendly communication when you give and receive feedback. When you provide feedback to a colleague, do so politely and consider their feelings. When receiving feedback, do so graciously.
2. Problem Solving
There are several different types of problem-solving skills.
You might be good at using interpersonal skills to solve problems between people. This is impossible without good communication skills (See point #1).
The ability to solve problems in the workplace can prove that you are good at negotiating. This itself may give your potential employer an incentive to hire you.
Traditional problem solving requires creativity and out-of-the-box thinking. Some issues will not have a solution written down. To solve a problem, you need first to be able to analyze and identify its source.
There are times when you will have to create the solution on the fly. If you can think on your feet and find ways to solve problems, this can help to keep some workload off your managers.
Of course, make sure you are in a position to make these decisions before proceeding. Go to your supervisors with the problem and a few solutions that could work.
3. Time Management
Productivity is what makes a company profitable. If you don’t have good time management, you won’t get much done. This is why employers want employees with good time management.
You cost the company money with your paycheck. It would help if you were sure your work is worth your salary.
If you cringed a little when reading this paragraph, you might suffer from procrastination. By following a few crucial tips and tricks, you can kick that lousy procrastination habit for good.
Time management is closely linked to work ethics. Potential employers do want you if you are lazy on the job or in the habit of milking the clock.
As already discussed, it can be hard to prove your soft skills on your resume, but you can highlight them during your job interview.
Have you been able to write a mental checklist of the soft skills you have and maybe some that need work?
If so, make the necessary adjustments so you can land that dream job!
Adam Marshall is a freelance writer who specializes in all things apartment organization, real estate, and college advice. He currently works with Grove at Murfreesboro to help them with their online marketing.