When searching for the start of a new career, it’s especially important to consider the valuable qualities and skills every employer wants that could make you indispensable to a company. And believe it or not, no matter which career path you follow, there are certain professional traits and talents that seemingly every employer seeks in a candidate. So the next time you’re writing a cover letter or updating your resume, ask yourself if you have these skills every employer wants that could make you just the employee they’re looking for.
When considering your own professional stock and the valuable qualities that make you hirable, it’s important to include any leadership experience you’ve gained in the working world. Being a leader, a supervisor, a manager, club president or authoritative figure means you’ve learned the tasks and responsibilities enough to represent a business or professional affiliation and instill those same ideals in others. While drafting your resume or speaking of your leadership experience in an interview setting, be sure to list what you’ve learned in your role and how you’ve worked with others in a team environment. When discussing the talents and skills every employer wants on their payroll, it’s important to sound like a leader who encourages others’ success and productivity in a group atmosphere without sounding like a dictator on a power-trip.
2. Customer Service Experience
Who knew that your stint in the retail sector could lend you some leg-up on the competition? Well, a business typically serves one crucial function: to keep its clients satisfied. If you have prior experience in customer service, you can better interpret clients as customers and know how to address them in a respectful manner. Additionally, customer service means working with a diverse public and being able to develop problem-solving skills that employers seek. Customer service is more than a monetary transaction of scanning items and counting change. It’s an environment that teaches how to represent a company in a direct and hands-on manner.
3. Social Media Trends and Analysis
While earning a top score in Bejeweled Blitz doesn’t have a place on your resume, staying current with social media can greatly benefit you in a professional capacity. If you operate a Facebook page, host a blog on WordPress or operate a Tumblr or Twitter account, you know how to dispense information via social media. Companies are developing an online presence now more than ever. This means more than simply hosting a bland old website. These companies want their brand represented on Twitter, on Instagram, on Facebook and Vine. Put your social media skills to good use and consider a career in social media marketing by flashing human resources some of your web-based credentials.
4. Microsoft Office Suite
While knowing word processing software seems like a given in any professional environment, employers aren’t simply looking for people who know how to type a nice letter. Brush up on your PowerPoint presentations and study those Excel spreadsheets, because nearly every business uses these or other nearly identical programs religiously. It may have been a while since your last presentation, so why not give it another test run to really wow those potential employers with your office software know-how.
5. Stellar Communication Skills
Communication encompasses such a large component of any career. Can you effectively compose company memos, speeches or corporate presentations? Can you properly verbalize necessary instructions, questions, details or facts to staff members, managers, CEOs, clients and customers? Verbally, you obviously want to avoid those dreaded “ummms” and “likes” in professional conversation. And when it comes to the written word, keep it simple and to the point, and of course, don’t forget the spell check.
Knowing the difference between right and wrong and willfully choosing to be honest can sometimes seem like a dwindling quality. If you turn on the news to find representatives of non-profit agencies embezzling funds or politicians abusing their powers for personal gain, you must know that there is a serious lack of integrity in the world. One question I’ve been asked more than a few times during the interview process is “When was the last time you were faced with a dilemma that questioned your moral principles in the workplace and how did you handle it?” It’s no surprise that employers seek integrity in the workers representing their company. Be honest and you’ll be just fine.
7. A Hunger for Knowledge
Sooner or later, everyone is a newbie in the workplace. Whether you’re a new-hire to a company or even a new candidate in an entirely different field, there will be things you just don’t know. You won’t know all of the company directives. You may not know how to get that pesky fax machine to cooperate or the latest update to the office’s photo editing software. But a good employee asks for help and demonstrates an eagerness to learn all the things that will ultimately make herself more productive to the company. For example, if you find yourself in the interview stage and asked if you have a particular skill or knowledge, play it straight. Simply say, “It’s something that I’m very eager to learn.” It’s certainly a better reply than a lie.
Women everywhere wonder what skills and qualities can make them more valuable to a company. And while corporate expectations may differ between businesses, job titles or even location on the map, these 7 hirable must-haves are a good start to a successful career. What qualities or skills make you an indispensable employee?