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Top 8 Soft Skills Employers Are On The Look Out For

Fridah Wangechi | 4 weeks ago
The job market is getting tougher to navigate by the day COURTESY
The job market is getting tougher to navigate by the day COURTESY

The employent sector is getting tougher to navigate each day, and having a great resume is one's best bet at getting that dream job. However, you may have all the academic and professional experience to conquer the job market, but lack a vital mastery of soft skills which consequently lead you to lose the job even before you get it.

It is hence important to know what soft skills are, and their importance in the market to give you a competitive edge over other potential employees. Soft skills are a mix of social and interpersonal skills, character traits, and professional attitudes that all jobs require.  Various examples include teamwork, patience, time management and communication skills. Soft skills , also known as people skills,  can be personality traits or they can be traits obtained through life experiences. 

With that in mind, these are top eight soft skills that attract employers to your resume:

1. Work ethic

This relates to valuing work and putting in the effort to yield results. It’s a soft skill that employers appreciate as it shows dedication to the job. Some soft skills related to work ethic are responsibility, discipline, dependability, commitment and professionalism.

As part of work ethic, employees are urged to embrace flexibility , which is the ability to adjust to changes. Keywords that describe flexibility include adapt, embrace, prioritize, develop and quick learner.


2. Interpersonal skills
These are all about how well you interact with others, maintain  relationships, and make a positive impression on those around you. Among skills you should include in your resume include empathy, humor, networking, tolerance and diplomacy

3. Teamwork
This is the ability to work effectively in a team to accomplish tasks. Examples of skills related to teamwork are conflict management and resolution, collaboration, coordination, exchange of ideas and mediation.
Keywords to use to describe your prowess in team work include morale, support, encourage and collaborate.

4. Leadership
This is the ability to lead, influence, and guide others, and employers are always on the look out for employees who have the initiative to mentor others to help the company grow. Also, these employees become potential candidates for promotions which would save the company in terms of an efficient work force.

Keywords to include in your resume that show your leadership skills include  mentor, delegate, lead and manage.

5. Communication
This is the ability to exchange ideas and information accurately which is a skill most employer require for all fields.
The most common communication skills are: 

Verbal communication -speaking clearly, concisely, and without misinterpretation
Written communication-  conveying and sharing ideas in written from for example writing emails, drafting reports and communicating with clients through circular and statement releases. If skilled in a particular field of writing like copywriting or editing, it would be an added advantage if you mention it on your resume.
Presentation- these are about how you present your ideas and intentions in the workplace, or about how you present yourself in a job interview. So confidence is key.
Constructive feedback- active listening, respect, open-mindedness, and teamwork which translates to willingness to learn and critical reasoning during evaluation.
Key words to use in your resume to describe your communication skills include presenting, negotiating and stakeholder engagement.

6. Analytical thinking
This is the ability to collect and process data related to a problem. Keywords to describe proficiency in analytical thinking include research, data analysis and developing strategy.

7. Time management
This involves the ability to use your time wisely to work as efficiently as possible. Employers prefer employees who are good at using their time in stress management, organization, prioritizing, planning and goal setting.

Keywords to use in your resume to describe your time management skills include prioritize, delegate and meeting deadlines

8. Critical Thinking
Employers love an employee who has a mastery in solving complex problems, as this is crucial in ensuring that a company remains firm even in a crisis. Skills associated with problem-solving include analysis, logical reasoning, observation, brainstorming and decision making.

Keywords to include in your resume to describe your problem solving skills include: implement, trouble shoot and analyse.

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