Hiring

When hiring, a lot of focus is often placed on the technical skills and qualifications required for the job; however, if the candidate lacks soft skills they may not be the star employee that the employer is hoping for!

“Soft skills” refer to the qualities that an individual possess, that enables them to work well with others by communicating effectively and building relationships. It is these traits that are the most transferrable between jobs and settings, so without them employees may struggle with simple day to day requirements of them, such as working in a team or dealing with conflict appropriately. These kind of soft skills can be gained from all sorts of life experiences, from previous jobs, to responsibilities at home. The important thing is that the candidate knows how to make best use of them in a professional setting and in relation to their particular role.

Though hard skills listed on your resume may land you an interview, it is your soft skills that will shine through during your interview and get you the job. Employers want to hire people who know how to conduct themselves professionally, as well as possessing the technical abilities for the job.

Here are a few of the top soft skills that a candidate should possess to become a great all round employee:

1) Communication

For a business to run smoothly, it is essential that the team communicate well with each other in order to exchange ideas and keep up to speed with everything going on within the company. This doesn’t just mean simple exchange of information with colleagues, however; employers want their staff to be capable of thoroughly explaining their thoughts and ideas with detail and conviction. They must also be able to communicate confidently and professionally with clients and customers, as they are a representative of the company and poor conduct could reflect badly on the business.

2) Collaboration

The ability to get along well with others and work in a team is one of the most valuable attributes that an employee can possess. Collaborating with your team can generate creative ideas and get work completed much more efficiently. On the other hand, if someone is unwilling to cooperate or compromise when working alongside colleagues, it is likely that conflict could arise, creating a poisonous atmosphere, as well as causing damage to the running of the business.

3) Self-motivation

The best staff are determined and have the get-up-and-go to complete tasks efficiently and to the best of their ability. It’s not always possible for somebody to offer employees constant guidance or stimulation to get the job done, so it’s important that they can provide themselves with their own motivation and can take initiative when necessary. A positive attitude goes a long way and can rub off on others in the team as well.

4) Problem solving

Employers want employees who can think practically and creatively in order to resolve any issues that arise. It’s inevitable that problems will occur that have potential to delay or hinder projects, so the employer wants to feel confident that their staff can handle them effectively and are up to the challenge, rather than struggling under pressure.

5) Time management

One of the most important skills for an employee to possess is the ability to organise their workload, in order for tasks to be completed as required and ensure deadlines are met. A good employee will know how to prioritise tasks appropriately and use their time wisely. Missing deadlines can hold the hold team back and throw projects off track, so it important that they are observed.

[image credit: Shutterstock]


About Sophie Deering

You can follow Sophie at @SophieDeering.

Get weekly recruiting and career tips direct to your inbox!

Load Comments