The 6 Soft Skills Every Job Seeker Should Have

Jun 15, 2019Blog, Interviewing

In today’s job market it is easy to overlook certain skills that often get forgotten about.  Make no mistake: degrees and certifications are important in today’s world. 

What’s even more important is the intangibles that separate a good employee from a great one.  These are soft skills. The interviewer won’t ask you about them so it is your job to highlight them during the interview.  

Lucky for you, these are skills you might already have or can improve upon over time.  Below are 6 soft skills that you as a job seeker must develop.

1. Persuasion

Persuasion is one of the most important soft skills. For example, you will have to persuade the hiring manager on why they should hire you!  How do you prove this skill?

Simple.  Explain why you would be a valuable asset to their company.  Use your persuasion skills to showcase the confidence you have in your abilities.  

Persuasion and confidence go hand-in-hand so make sure you know what you are talking about.  As we recently mentioned here on 5 Tips On How To Land The Best Summer Jobs, it’s important to know what skills you have before going into an interview.

2. Problem Solving

Every hiring manager likes to bring someone on that is good at solving problems.  During an interview, you will get asked about prior job experiences.  

This is the time to showcase how you helped your past employer overcome specific issues.  Show them how you faced a tight deadline and still did a tremendous job.  

Perhaps you were working on a project where you faced difficult challenges along the way.  This is where you can talk about specific issues you tackled using problem-solving.

3. Time Management

This is one of if not the most important soft skills every employee should have.  At any job you take, you will have certain tasks that are due by a certain time.  

Sometimes you will get taken off track by other challenges or distractions.  Many hiring managers like to ask you about how well you work under pressure.  

This is a perfect opportunity to talk about how you reached deadlines on time.  Having good time management skills allows you to be more productive at work.  

You can work ten times faster if you prioritize your tasks.  When you’re more productive you can contribute more to the company and employers notice that.

4. Adaptability

Adaptability is the ability or willingness to change in your environment.  Hiring managers look at adaptability as a key indicator of success. This is also known as being flexible.  If you are willing to take on new responsibilities and go outside of your comfort zone, that is key.  

This is a perfect time to describe a time at a previous job where you took on a new role.  Or maybe you stepped in for a colleague and took on some of their responsibilities for them.  

This is also a great time to show your future employer that you look at being adaptable as an opportunity to grow.  If you want to move up in a company you will have to adapt to new responsibilities and challenges. Employers look highly upon this skill so take the time to jot down a few examples before the interview.

5. Coachable

Do you consider yourself to be coachable?  This might be a familiar question. Coachable means you are willing to take constructive criticism and learn from it.  

Employers will like to know that you look at criticism as a learning opportunity.  Did you ever receive some less than stellar feedback? Employers want to know you aren’t the type of person to take constructive criticism personally.

Did you find a way to improve and not take it as a personal attack?  If so, you are coachable. This is one of those skills where it’s okay to brag a little.  Let them know you understand there is always room for improvement.

6. Team Player

Are you able to work well within a group or collaborate?  Being a team player is a great skill to have or one you can develop through experience.  

At most jobs, you will have to work with teammates at some point. If you get asked this question try and think of a time where you pitched in on a project or came up with a great idea.  

Make sure to give a specific example of how your idea helped the team.  The hiring manager will be glad to know you work well with others. You don’t have to be a people person to be a team player.  

You just need to respect other people’s ideas and be willing to work together sometimes.

Key Takeaways

Throughout the interview, you will find out a lot of these skills come up together.  Remember to detail your answers and give specific examples of each one.  

You may find out you have more of these skills than you imagined or need to brush up on others.  The important takeaway is you know how these intangible skills make you valuable. You will learn the more you highlight your soft skills the better your odds are of landing that dream job!

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