When you find a position that interests you, you’ll typically check to see if it’s with a company you admire, the position’s earning potential, and if your experience makes you a qualified candidate. The truth is, you may not meet all the qualifications, but don’t let that stop you from applying.
Your future boss isn’t just looking for technical skills. Employers want to hire people who are responsible, reliable and work well with others. These character traits and interpersonal skills are known as soft skills. They influence how well a person can work or interact with others and are very important in the workplace. Unlike technical skills, such as coding, welding or taking someone’s blood pressure, soft skills are very difficult if not impossible to teach. So even if you don’t meet all the technical qualifications for a job that excites you, apply anyway and highlight why you’d be a great fit for the position in your cover letter.
Here are a few soft skills that can boost your overall qualifications.
Whether it’s every day or only a few times a month, odds are you will be working with others at your job, so demonstrating you’re a team player is vital. Every person brings a unique perspective to their role and having the ability to listen and respect your teammates while building upon each other’s ideas is great for business and company culture.
Good communication skills are useful in any environment, especially in the workplace. Knowing how to communicate with your superiors, coworkers, clients and customers leads to success in both relationships and business. Not knowing how to communicate effectively can result in confusion and frustration for everyone involved. In addition, it’s important to know that not everyone communicates the same way. Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification to avoid mistakes, missed deadlines or hurt feelings.
A strong problem solver can observe, judge and make decisions when difficulties arise. Whether you work behind a computer, with heavy machinery or in the emergency room, the ability to perform under pressure and think outside the box is invaluable to employers and your coworkers.
Can employers depend on you to show up on time to every shift, turn your projects in on time and speak up if your workload has become too much? If you are trustworthy and reliable, you’ll be given more responsibility and opportunities for growth.
No matter what industry you’re in, you can expect there to be unexpected changes in the way your job is performed as well as your work environment. You may have to quickly pivot from one project to another or your boss may ask you to take on tasks that you’re not usually responsible for. Being adaptable shows your employer that you can be helpful and flexible while handling changes and challenges with a positive attitude.