Employer and employee relationship is a very strange relation. However, every employer is looking for a specific combination of skills from their prospective job seekers that contest the skills which are required for performance of a particular job.
In history of this corporate management, interviewing managers have described what they really look for. They focus on the skills that are listed as well as on those exhibited by the employee.
The level of focus on the listed attributes of the described position is lesser. It is always expected that the basic level of skills needed to perform the position is available with the employee.
The employers look at the resume and at the first hand they get an idea about the employee’s skills. There are a few skills and attributes that are sought by most of the employees.
Most likely the candidate possesses one or more of those qualities which is relaxing news. Another relaxing thing is that the other qualities needed by the employers are such which can be acquired by you through training, development programs, getting proper guidance and mentorship from a person who possesses them.
So the thing to be looked at it that when you apply for a job or a position you can customize your resume and your marketing and communications i.e., the covering letter, the resume, work experience to highlight how you fit the required description and eligibility criteria.
These skills are usually called as the soft skills or employability skills.
Following are some of the most repeatedly asked and mentioned skills from the Human Resource Managers. Let us have a look at what are the employers looking for :-
1. Communication Skills – Verbal, Written and Listening:
Communication, the ability to communicate effectively, is the most frequently mentioned skill in this respect by the employers and hiring managers.
If you have the ability to listen, speak, write effectively and facilitate communication that is absolutely crucial in any profession that you might be engaged in.
All professions need this skill. The punch line is that if you communicate well, you are a step ahead of others.
In your resume, you can list things such as you are exceptional listener and communicator who conveys the information effectively and you can list out the proficiency areas and highlight how you facilitate communication between others.
Even in the interview, as the level increase, you increasingly need to be able to market yourself and your skills through verbal as well as non-verbal communication.
For example, eye contact with the people who interview you or with those you meet during a group discussion is an important way to showcase our skill/ the body language speaks volumes without saying a word. A way to improve it is to read and speak a lot. A well-read mind is better speaker. The more you listen. Speak and write and engage in it, the better and better you will become.
2. Analytical and Research Skills:
The ability to gauge a situation, gather additional information if required, seek multiple perspectives and identify critical issues that need to be addressed is crucially important.
Every potential company, regardless of the profession, the industry or the field, is seeking employees who can assist them to resolve troubles. The more you show them this skill, the more will you attract their attention.
A way in which you can show this in your resume is as below – Showed talent for scrutinizing, identifying and streamlining complex processes through the use of highly analytical thinking.
You need to have some examples ready to show how you did it in the earlier positions that you have held. To develop this skill, you need to develop your fast thinking. It might be through solving elementary math problems or through riddles and puzzles.
The subject might be irrelevant but the relevant thing is that the brain is being stimulated to learn a new thing. It improves the analytical side of your brain to figure out complex problems.
3. Computer and Technical Literacy:
Every profession requires a basic understanding of the hardware and software of computer, especially word processing and spreadsheet software.
Everything is done on the system nowadays and apart from the software specifically for the job, you need to know the basic ones.
The ability to showcase the proficiency in technology and computers is a crucial thing in the information technology age.
If your profession needs a specific computer skill, you need to highlight those separately in your resume and in your covering letter. You can go for a course in computers or in the skills specifically related to your profession.
However, if not the basic course, you can opt for an advanced course to increase your chances of getting highlighted and selected.
4. Flexibility , Managing Multiple Important Tasks:
The society today demands proficiency in the area of multi-tasking.
The ability to manage multiple tasks and assignments, define priorities and adapt to dynamic conditions and work assignments is an almost critical skill.
It is difficult to articulate at times because it has become so much of a part of our everyday life that it feels like it has been a part of us always but this is not with everyone. Communicate it if you need to secure the position you are applying for.
Highlighting effective multi-tasking along with adaptability, the willingness and ability to adjust and change as per conditions should be highlighted.
Be ready with stories wherein you can explain how you managed tasks and juggled between them efficiently and with perfection.
You may also focus on areas where you were the initiator for change. You need to have detailed anecdotes to demonstrate this skill.
5. Interpersonal Abilities:
It might sound similar to the ability to communicate but it is specific to the ability wherein you relate to your colleagues, your co-workers.
It also included the ability to inspire others to participate and resolve conflicts among them. As we spend a major part of our time with them, hence it makes this skill more critical and essential in today’s times.
You can list it in your resume like – Relationship builder with great interpersonal skills. Again, be ready with examples where you demonstrated this to the benefit of all. It might be difficult to quantify but it is very significant.
Tell the interviewers your points about collaboration with co-workers, facilitation of group discussions and initiative in earlier organizations.
You can improve it by reading books on this topic. You need to read material that increases your emotional and your intelligence quotient.
6. Problem-Solving and Reasoning Ability:
Our work lives are full of conflicts. Every day, we are faced with many problems- both internal and external.
Such issues affect business and to counter it, employers want to hire people who can solve these conflicts and issues. This ability specifically focuses creativity and reasoning.
You can use your past experiences and creativity to find solutions to such problems along with the available resources of information technology. This area needs practice and experience.
Another way to gain knowledge is to read about leaders who are great problem solvers. Such readings inspire you and tell you how do great minds function when faced with such circumstances.
Your mind also needs to function that way. If it does, you have the opportunity to excel at one of the most sought after skills.
7. Diversity and awareness:
Our society and our workplace is more diverse than ever before. The people who can demonstrate a sensitivity and awareness about other people, about cultures are going to be the most successful person in the coming age.
Multiculturalism is not simply about diversity in race or creed; it is much more than that. It encompasses thought and perspectives of a lot of people.
It needs to be communicated to the Recruiting person that you appreciate and understand the thought of others; you are sensitive to those who differ from you and may be different than the rest of us.
A way to improve this skill is to spend time with those who are different from you.
Comfort zones should be restricted and we should go out and branch with people who are different from us. We should be creative in the way we understand cultures and people.
We all think that if there was a magic crystal ball where we could see the thought of the recruiting person, read their minds to know what they are looking for. If we know we can easily present our self in that way and get the job.
However it is not that easy. Even after knowing what they need, if we are unable to present yourself in that way and market our skills, we won’t get it.
Communication is the key and I hope this article will serve as an answer key to help you in your interviews as well as resumes.