Soft skills, such as problem solving, cultural intelligence, innovation and leadership, are highly valued by employers. After all, it doesn’t matter how competent and educated you are; if you don’t have the skills to successfully work well with others, you probably won’t be an ideal candidate. Even though soft skills are as important as job-specific ones, they are often not highlighted in applications and interviews because they are not as easily defined or measured.

Keen to demonstrate your soft skills but don’t know where to start? Let’s take a look at the most in demand soft skills right now, and how to prove that you have them to prospective employers!

Cultural Intelligence

In other words, the ability to work with and learn from people who are different to you. More and more companies have some sort of international reach, whether it’s clients across multiple locations or remote workers. These companies seek employees not only with experience working in multicultural environments, but who can also demonstrate the ability to see things from different perspectives, and can inspire collaboration across multiple locations and cultures.

How Can I Demonstrate This?

In your cover letter, give precise examples of when you’ve worked in multicultural environments – for example, working with teams in different locations and cultures or managing projects with remote teams. In your interview, make sure to expand on these examples to prove that you don’t only have experience in multicultural environments, but that you thrive in them. Don’t have much concrete experience in this area? Talk about the languages you can speak, any travelling that you’ve done, freelancers you’ve dealt with in different locations – anything to show that you are open and flexible to global working.

Problem Solving and Critical Thinking

The skill of being able to resolve issues on the fly will never go out of fashion with employers; in a constantly-changing recruitment market, candidates that are able to troubleshoot and solve problems independently are very attractive to hiring managers. But the ability to recognise issues, and to identify, evaluate and implement solutions, can be tricky to measure and demonstrate in job applications.

How Can I Demonstrate This?

Just saying that you have great problem-solving skills isn’t enough – you need to get specific. Think of three recent examples in your career where you’ve taken on a challenge, brainstormed solutions either independently or as a team, and then successfully resolved the issue. In your cover letter or resume, when discussing a particular role which is relevant to the application, insert an example of a problem you resolved and the measured result, for example cost or time savings.

Creativity and Innovation

A survey by the World Economic Forum found that creativity will be the third most important work skill by 2020, after problem solving and critical thinking. Why? Because if businesses are to compete in a rapidly-changing landscape, they need people who can look at things in a new and fresh way. The ability to let go of preconceived ideas and to find patterns that are not obvious is a soft skill that employers value.

How Can I Demonstrate This?

Think about how your creativity and innovation has helped you in the past, and how it might be an asset to the job for which you are applying. Your career does not have to be in a creative field for you to find examples of ingenuity within it! Maybe you streamlined a process in your team, figured out a way to reduce costs during a budget crunch, or developed a strategy for onboarding international clients. Add some hard numbers to these examples and you’re a hiring manager’s dream, no matter the industry.

Leadership

This soft skill is the mother of all skills – a leader encompasses all of the soft skills covered in this article, and then some. Talent managers aren’t just looking for leadership experience for management positions; the ability to inspire people to do their best work and to succeed is a soft skill all employers crave.

How Can I Demonstrate This?

You don’t have to be a manager or a supervisor to demonstrate leadership skills. Maybe you’ve taken the initiative outside of your daily routine to come up with ideas or taken on extra responsibilities. Did you become a point person for a project, or taken on more work from a manager? Research the leadership skills that are particularly valued in your field and make sure to emphasise them in your job applications and interviews.

Now that you know how to get these in demand soft skills across, you’re ready to apply for that dream job! Contact Saro Recruitment and visit our vacancies today!

14 March 2018