If you’re looking to take your career to the next level, you might be wondering what type of skills beyond your current qualifications and experience can make you more attractive to employers.
While every job is different, some skills are valued in any field. You’d be surprised by what a difference developing and demonstrating these skills can make in your career journey.
Here are 7 essential skills that can get you to that next step on the ladder.
1. Communication skills
Now you might think that you communicate fine with your peers, but there’s always room for improvement when it comes to this skill. Whether it’s communication through the written word or verbal, the ability to express yourself in a clear and concise manner is key not just in the workplace, but in all aspects of life.
Often, when we don’t get along with someone, it’s because our communication styles clash. If you can learn to adjust your communication style to others, you’ll find that work relationships, as well as personal ones, become a lot easier. Good communication skills make you more efficient, more effective, and more likely to be successful when working with others.
2. Teamwork skills
In any workplace, you’ll find that you have to work with other people at some point. Even if you’re mostly working independently, being a team player is an essential skill to develop. After all, there are still suppliers and clients that you’ll need to liaise with, and at some point you might find yourself working on a team project.
When it comes to teamwork, it’s important that you’re able to take direction from others, as well as offer your own input when needed. Being a good team player also means being able to compromise and empathize with others.
Active listening is a big part of being an effective team member. Make sure that you’re really hearing what others are saying, and not just waiting for your turn to speak. This way, you can avoid misunderstandings and build better relationships with your colleagues.
3. Problem-solving skill
In any job, there will always be problems to solve.
Employers value people who can respond quickly and creatively to problems as they arise. If you’re the type of person who is always looking for solutions, then you’re on the right track.
Employers also value people who are able to take a logical and methodical approach to problem-solving. This means being able to break down a problem into smaller pieces, and then finding a way to solve each piece systematically.
4. Self-management skills
Being able to manage yourself is an important skill in any workplace, but especially so now when many are still working from home. Employers want to know that you’re able to take initiative and get things done without needing to be micromanaged.
If you’re the type of person who is always on top of things and who doesn’t need to be constantly reminded to do your work, then you’re demonstrating good self-management skills.
Another important aspect of self-management is being able to stay calm under pressure. This can be difficult, but being decisive and keeping a level head will go a long way in any workplace. It shows that you’re reliable and that you can handle the pressure when things get tough.
5. Foreign language skills
In today’s globalized world, being able to speak a foreign language is a valuable skill to have. Even if you’re not planning on working overseas, being bilingual or multilingual gives you an edge over monolingual candidates.
With so many businesses now operating internationally, being able to communicate with clients and suppliers in their own language can be a real asset. It shows that you’re committed to building relationships, and that you’re willing to go the extra mile to make sure those relationships are successful.
If you’re not already bilingual or multilingual, there are many resources available to help you learn a new language. Some employers may also subsidise part of your foreign language course fees if your skills would be an asset to the business. There’s no better time than now to start learning!
6. Digital literacy skills
In today’s digital world, it’s important that you’re comfortable using computers and other digital devices. Many jobs now require at least basic computer skills, so if you’re not already confident using a computer, it’s time to learn!
The software you need to be competent in will vary depending on the workplace, but at minimum, a familiarity with the Microsoft suite of products is a good start. If you’re applying for a job that requires design skills, then being proficient in Photoshop or another design program will give you a big advantage.
Knowing the basic functionality of any conferencing software is a must these days. Make sure you know how to mute, unmute, screen-share, etc., so that you’re not fumbling around trying to figure it out when it’s time for your big meeting. Knowing how to diagnose general issues like a dead mic or speakers can also make it easier on your tech team.
Digital competency makes you a standout candidate in any room. There are many online resources available to help you improve your skills, so there’s no excuse not to get started!
Change is a constant in today’s workplace, so employers are looking for people who are able to adapt to change quickly. This means being open to new ideas and new ways of doing things, as well as keeping an eye on the upcoming trends.
Adaptability isn’t necessarily about being quick on your feet, but being prepared to face the unknown. If you’re the type of person who is always asking questions and looking for ways to improve, then you’re demonstrating that you’re adaptable.
Asking for feedback is also a good way to show that you’re adaptable. It shows that you’re willing to learn from your mistakes and that you’re open to criticism.
Ready to make the climb?
If you’re looking to take your career to the next level, then developing these skills will give you a big advantage. Start by assessing where you are currently and set some goals for yourself. There are many resources available to help you improve on your existing foundations.
Remember, even though some of these skills are innate, all of them can be learned with time and practice. So don’t be discouraged if you’re starting from scratch. With just a little effort, you’ll soon be ready to take your career to new heights!
MCIE courses have flexible part-time and full-time options, with some courses delivered online as well as in person. Visit our website for more details, or call us at 1300 737 004 to talk about your study options.