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Demonstrate Your Soft Skills

Friday, October 11, 2013 9:27:40 AM

 Employers look for far more than the ability to complete a set of given tasks. They seek candidates with a diverse and flexible set of attributes; they may want people who form the team not just join it, people who can work flexibly and with initiative and people who are masters of networking in presenting themselves with confidence to clients and suppliers alike.

Consequently, employers are not only critiquing your technical skills in an interview but are ever assessing your ‘soft skills’; those personal attributes that define your character and that can be utilised across a broad variety of jobs and tasks.

As a result, we believe it to be vital that you clearly demonstrate your ‘soft skills’ to your prospective employer. Whilst it is often easier to show your personal traits in a face-to-face interview than on paper, a Skills-based CV format enables you to identify those attributes required by the employer and evidence your claims of proficiency with examples.

We detail below several examples of soft skills that you may wish to consider highlighting in your job application:

·                  Self-management – Are you an organiser, reliable and manage your own time effectively? Are you able to evaluate yourself in critiquing your strengths and weaknesses? Do you set goals and track your own progress towards them?

An example that reflects such attributes may be; ‘I am passionate about playing hockey. However, whilst at school, my commitment to training and playing each week had to be balanced with my ambitions to gain the best achievable grades in my A Levels. Consequently, I evaluated all of my commitments and ensured that I strictly adhered to the resultant timetable.

·             People skills – Are you a fantastic listener and able to articulate your ideas? When giving a presentation do you keep peoples’ attention? Can you facilitate discussions and feedback effectively? Can you be interesting at the same time as being interested? How do your work in a team-setting; are you a leader or prefer contributing to goals through taking instruction?

An example that reflects such attributes may be; ‘Whilst at university, I led a team of three in a seminar’s task that required me to delegate, coordinate and contribute to the presentation of our findings within a strict one week timeline’.

·                     Innovative – Are you creative or innovative? Are you confident in proposing new ideas or gain more satisfaction in meeting your Line Manager’s immediate requirements. Do you challenge methodology or strictly adhere to it?

An example that reflects such an attribute may be; “Whilst working for a local retail shop, we were taking our deliveries shortly before busy Thursday opening times. As a result, I successfully proposed to the Manager that we rearrange our delivery time to Monday mornings; when we had a better idea of our stock requirements and when the shop was typically at its quietest’.

 

There are relatively few jobs that you cannot be successfully trained in through hard work and education. However, our personal attributes and traits will ensure that we are more successful in some roles and working environments than in others. Therefore, we recommend taking the time to evaluate your own character and skills and highlight these in both your CV and in the resultant interview to ensure the best possible employment “match”.

If you have any questions, whether you are preparing to interview or be interviewed, please don’t hesitate to contact us via info@getworkexperience.com or on 0208 823 0605.