Some years ago, different skills that are in high demand today were not taken into account, since a person’s experience and academic background were enough to decide whether to hire him or her or not. Allen Woo, an expert in personnel management, explains which skills are the most coveted by recruiters in companies nowadays.
Previously, a resumé had to include a long list of studies completed and places where the person had worked. Fortunately, this approach has changed completely. Today, companies focus their interest on other characteristics, regardless of whether or not you have work experience.
Soft skills, also known as transversal skills, are related to emotional intelligence. They are personality traits, social skills, communication, aptitudes, and skills acquired in practice. They usually include personal habits, friendliness, optimism, common sense, and a positive, flexible attitude.
Woo explains that it is difficult to present them in a hierarchical order. However, the first one he discusses is the most prized by large companies. He talks about teamwork. In a way, this is the sum of many other soft skills. It requires leadership, decision-making skills, the ability to follow instructions, and an open and tolerant attitude. Accepting suggestions and opinions is the key to getting along with the team, which ensures good job performance.
“For some, teamwork is not only valuable in the workplace, but also in daily life, as we always depend on each other to complete projects,” explains the specialist. Communication is also in high demand. Woo refers to the ability to pay attention and listen. Because listening, understanding, and relating ideas are the basis for teamwork and strategy design.
Communication must always be clear and, if it is written, with good spelling, because it is the image of your person. In addition, it must be effective both with people inside and outside the organization.
Two distinct soft skills that can be addressed under one heading are flexibility and adaptability because they are closely related. “Adaptability implies the ability to adjust to change quickly; flexibility, to do so easily. Adapting easily and quickly are skills that are highly valued by companies because of the current times,” Woo explains.
Complaining about everything will scare away your chances of being hired. If you didn’t do well in your previous job, don’t badmouth it. When you don’t receive complete information, don’t complain and look for ways to solve the issue. Always remember to be positive in the face of challenges, as this is a point in your favor.
Knowing and understanding the organization’s objectives allows you to evaluate and resolve situations in the most appropriate way. Making the right decisions requires creativity and initiative, but also observation and willingness to get involved in conflict resolution.
The initiative is a skill that involves self-motivation to move in a direction, to make things happen without the need to be forced or supervised by someone higher up. In other words, it means stepping forward to improve processes or innovate in other areas.
Leadership is undoubtedly an essential point. Being a leader does not necessarily mean being at the head of an area or department. Rather, it implies a set of skills that can lead you to excel. These include communicating, listening, setting and meeting your own goals, accepting your mistakes and leveraging your strengths, being responsible and managing your feelings and emotions, and considering those of others.
“It’s obvious that none of us knows everything, but today’s technology has led to constant change, which demands constant learning to stay current. The willingness to learn is a treasure that companies value highly,” says Woo.
Having multitasking skills is now critical. The fast pace of work in today’s companies requires the same person to perform several functions in the same position. In addition, you are expected to show your ability to work under pressure and to deliver good results.
And finally, there is honesty. No matter how much you excel in the previous skills, if you incur any dishonest action, everything will fall apart. Decent, upright, and honest are other meanings that the Real Academia Española offers for the term honest.