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When it comes to getting a job, it’s about more than just having technical, job-specific, hard skills. Did you know that it’s often the soft skills that separate an average candidate from a great one?
Top soft skills like communication, listening, and empathy may not be traits you think would set you apart from the crowd, but they have a big impact in the workplace. Companies are in need of employees who can contribute to building a positive work environment. In this sense, a trait like emotional intelligence can be more valuable than, say, knowing a certain programming language. Additionally, soft skills are much harder to teach, so candidates that possess these skills are in high demand.
Let’s take a look at 3 soft skills you should highlight when applying for a job:
For companies and recruiters, communication skills are always at the top of the list for what they look for in a candidate. Whether you are negotiating with clients, writing reports, or dealing with conflicts, it affects everything you do. As a job-seeker, being a good communicator will help get your foot in the door! While you may have the skills that make you great for the job, you need to be able to convince others of that.
Focus on trying to be clear and concise in your communication. Learn to listen, reflect, and tailor your message to the audience.
Strong communication skills will help you stand out and advance in your career.
WILLINGNESS TO LEARN
Employers are looking for people who are able to adapt, learn, un-learn, and re-learn. They want employees with a growth mindset: those who when faced with an issue they don’t understand, will have an “I don’t know, but I can and will learn” attitude. Companies like Amazon hire for learning agility and culture fit because they understand that what they hired you for may change in a matter of months. Your willingness to learn shows your initiative, perseverance, and flexibility.
Demonstrate this skill by showing examples of how you have taught yourself certain skills, highlighting your achievements and growth, and asking questions in the interview.
EFFECTIVE TEAM WORKING
No matter what industry you are in, or what your career path may be, your ability to work well and inspire others to perform better is highly valuable. Recruiters look for team players who understand, encourage, and value others’ opinions. This often leads to smarter and more innovative solutions. In a study on empathy in the workplace that Thomas Malone conducted with MIT researchers, he found empathy to be a key ingredient that makes certain teams better than others.
So be sure to mention examples where you worked well in a team and the positive results that came from your efforts.
Do you have the top soft skills that employers are looking for?
Now that you have an idea of the skills employers look for, you can start to prepare and develop these skills further. Aim to get to a point where you can walk into your interviews feeling confident in both your technical and your soft skills.
Kickstart your journey to impactful communication and teamwork with the courses below, and you’ll be sure to stand out from the competition!