skills needed to get hired, communication, projects, millennials doing projects, job hunting, soft skills, hard skills
SKILLS DEVELOPMENT / 14 December 2016
The Three Skills You Need To Attract Every Hiring Manager
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Alexis Ang
Director of Marketing

Love is in the air and candidates everywhere are hoping to score big with the right hiring manager. Whether it’s your next big move, summer internship or first real job, it’s all a big game of attraction. The first impression can be tough to nail but crucial to move the relationship to the next stage. 

Although I’m sure your profile is stellar, I’ve compiled a few skills commonly overlooked that every hiring manager looks for. Take a look and see what you already have and maybe what you can add to up your professional appeal. 

#1 Communication

Time and time again this is a skill that is still rare in top candidates and highly sought by hiring managers. No matter what line of work you are in, soft skills like communication are key. 

As technology advances and workplaces become more connected, the focus on social media tools and collaboration is growing. Effectively communicating across multiple channels with a variety of personalities is crucial. Active listening was recently voiced as one of the most important communication skills hiring managers are looking for, along with strong written and verbal skills.

There are many different ways you can increase and strengthen your communication skills. If you often work by yourself, try collaborating with others. This will add some variety, as well as opportunity to connect with others. Writing or maintaining a blog also can be a great way to practice communicating to a specific audience as well as developing a form of self-expression. 

A communication goal I personally have relates to multitasking. Many times I find myself having a conversation with a co-worker while reading an email or browsing my newsfeed. As much as I pride myself on multitasking, I recently found myself questioning that pride. As I was reading Kevin Daum’s words from 8 ways to improve your communication right now on, they really struck a chord with me:

 “...people rarely want your divided attention...whether you are having a conversation in person or on the phone, give the other person focused time. You’ll make them feel important and worthy. Plus your conversations will actually be shorter, allowing you to go back and add that important mustache in your Instagram photo.”

Better communication, more focus will decrease the chance of missing details and increase your success. 

#2 Adaptability

The pace within the business world has never been faster. There is a growing pressure to keep up and the next big thing is always lurking around the corner. Hiring managers are looking for candidates who adapt easily to learning a new skill and can manage change. There is no longer a neat, nice bulleted set of job guidelines and expectations. Every role will be required to morph and adapt as needs and priorities of the company change.

Relating to business, this means being open to new concepts, ideas, and having the ability to work by yourself or as part of a team as the situation changes. It also entails being able to juggle multiple projects without losing momentum or focus when conditions abruptly change. Your ability to adapt to changing situations determines your flexibility. Shifting focus, embracing ambiguity and thinking creatively are all excellent ways to develop your ability to adapt. Find new opportunities to be involved in and push your creative limits. Get involved with a project with other job seekers or students. Not normally a leader? Step up and lead your team, work on something with a new mindset. Like working out, you must build your flexibility. It takes time and practice. 

#3 Problem Solving

Communication and adaptability are crucial but not enough alone. Hiring managers want to see you can help solve real problems. Can you go into a challenge and come up with fresh solutions? Some of the ways this can be demonstrated include:

You will always be judged on your ability to solve problems. No matter your job, there are always problems to be solved. The better you become at solving them the more opportunities you will gain within your career. Listing your solutions with results on your profile or resume can also help show potential employers concrete results you’ve achieved, rather than just responsibilities.

All these skills are gained through practice and come over time. Find opportunities to collaborate with others remotely or locally. Join a ProSky project, be more self-aware in your work, push yourself to go out of your comfort zone. Employers want to make sure you can stand out alone and work together towards success.

Remember, these skills should be apparent on your online profile so that the “first impression” goes smoothly. If you don’t yet fully possess these skills, what are some ways you are working to change that? Adding these skills and gaining additional experience can drive up visibility to your profile and increase your chances at landing that job or internship. 

Check out our professional training programs, see what works best for you. You’ll not only learn a valuable skill, but also have the opportunity to network and put everything you’ve learned into practice during your final project with a real company. 

We hope to see you soon! Happy hunting!