Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Playing Hard Ball with Soft Skills

Today’s job market continues to be highly competitive. Most employers are looking for employees who bring a solid education and proven job performance. Beyond the specific job skills required to do the role, employers also want to know what kind of person are you. Are you a team player? How do you treat your customers? Do you take initiative?

While your specific job skills and certifications may get you noticed, your soft skills can tip the scales in an interview. Hiring managers are looking at leadership qualities, attitudes, communication skills, emotional intelligence, and other personal attributes that are essential to career success. These interpersonal skills are becoming more and more in demand when employers are assessing applicants to determine if they are a right fit for the job.

Some specific areas to keep in mind as you’re assessing and promoting your own brand are:
  • Accountability
  • Problem Solving
  • Time Management 
  • Collaboration
  • Flexibility
  • Communication
  • Active Listening
  • Leadership
  • Initiative
  • Relationship Building
This is just a small sample that can be found in job descriptions. Take time to assess your skill sets and discover the unique strengths and value you bring to an employer. This way you will be prepared to discuss them with employers. Don’t forget to incorporate these skills into your resume by crafting bullet points that showcase accomplishments you have achieved through your soft skills. Soft skills also play an important role in your LinkedIn Profile and Skills sections, and even during interviews when asked, “Tell me about yourself.”

We’re eager to help you explore other ways to use your soft skills during your job search. We have robust professional development resources that can help you to increase your interpersonal effectiveness, and workplace productivity.

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