You may think your resume is showing off your best qualities, but have you included soft skills? While quantifiable hard skills like degrees or technical knowledge are important, employers are often looking for those hard-to-define soft skills when selecting a candidate. If you really want your job application to stand out from the pack, or for your boss to give you a promotion, make sure you’re embodying these eight soft skills.
No matter what industry you work in, communication is important. Whether you’re dealing with customers, clients, vendors or your coworkers, you will need to communicate effectively. You will need to speak clearly and politely in person, via email or over the phone, and depending on the position, you may need to communicate large ideas and concepts to mixed groups or through presentations.
Being a good communicator also means being a good listener. You need to not only share your own ideas, but also listen to the needs of others.
It’s very rare that a company will be successful based on you and you alone. Instead, you will be part of a team working towards a common goal, and working together with that team will be of the utmost importance.
According to ResumeBuild, hiring managers look for candidates who work well with others. The more you’re able to collaborate with your coworkers, the more likely you will be successful at your job.
Time management simply means you can work efficiently, and what employer wouldn’t want that? The more you can optimize your time, the more likely you are to help the company’s bottom line.
If you want to emphasize your ability to manage time on your resume, use phrases like “prioritize requests and demands” or “focus on high-value activities.” This signals that you know how to manage tasks efficiently without missing deadlines or goals.
If you struggle with time management, there are ways to increase your efficiency. Start by completing the most important tasks first in the day so you have the most time to focus on them.
You can also try setting aside chunks of time to complete each task, like in the Pomodoro technique. By dividing your day in 25-minute blocks separated by short breaks, you can accomplish more by getting into the flow and avoiding distractions.
Time management, teamwork and problem-solving
There are two kinds of people: those who complain about a problem, and those who take action to fix it. You want to prove to your employers that you’re the second kind of person, someone who can come up with solutions and keep a cool head in a crisis.
You may even hear some bosses go so far as to say “don’t come to me with problems, come with a solution.” This shows how much problem-solving is emphasized in the workplace.
This is an important skill no matter what level you are at in your career, including senior and managerial roles. You should be able to create solutions with your team and make innovations for the company. In fact, making solutions is one of the top ways to prove you deserve a promotion.
Having a strong work ethic is an invaluable skill for many employers. Some workers just want to fill time for eight hours a day and head home, but those with a good work ethic put more energy, effort and passion into their day.
The kind of employee who is willing to stay late when needed, put up their hand to help with other tasks or show a real interest will succeed over those who let the world know they’re just in it for the paycheck.
If you want to prove to your employer that you have a strong work ethic and are the kind of employee worth keeping around (or promoting!), make sure to complete tasks on time, stay focused on your work and always be punctual.
One thing that’s important to keep in mind is not to sacrifice your work-life balance. Spending too much time on work can cause stress and begin to negatively affect your performance – as well as your personal life!
Let’s face it: things won’t always go to plan. Unexpected delays, new technology or indecisive clients can cause major changes to your workday.
Employers prize people who are flexible and can handle the bumps along the road, whether it’s finding solutions, learning quickly or looking for new opportunities for the company.
This is especially vital for people working in tech: the landscape is changing rapidly with new software and platforms being developed regularly. Using last year’s model or strategy can really hinder a company in that space.
Be sure to include the soft skills in your resume
Ideally, workplaces will have few conflicts to deal with, but being able to handle the ones that arise is a valuable skill. Conflicts can create difficult work environments, unhappy staff and a decrease in turnover. By properly managing conflicts, you can make the workplace better for yourself and everyone else around you.
Conflicts can arise between co-workers on the same level, bosses and their subordinates or even between workers and their clients or customers. You can act either as a mediator, coordinating a resolution between the two parties, or one of the participants looking to resolve the issue. Either way, being able to deescalate the situation and find a satisfactory resolution for all parties is a valuable skill.
Even if you’re not currently in a leadership role, showing leadership skills at work can help your career. Displaying leadership skills can help catch the attention of your superiors and lead to more opportunities, pay raises and promotions.
If you want to show off leadership skills at work, try taking charge of internship programs or by offering to train new employees. This gives you a chance to manage people, motivate them and show your bosses you are ready for more responsibility. There are lots of other ways to find leadership potential in your role, like spearheading projects or volunteering for groups or committees.