Certain skills are important and will get you almost any job in the job market.
In the previous post, I briefly explained the three types of interview questions you may encounter in your next interview.
These questions may arise at any stage of your interview depending on the organization. We discussed how employers can use these interview questions to get information on employability skills from you.
In this post, we’ll address important employability skills every employee or job applicant should develop according to (Flux Report by Right Management) along with other necessary skills.
You’ll find 13 skills along with other general skills needed to get a job and which may be tested on during an interview.
It is important for you to note that before you apply for a job, ensure that you have the requisite skills required for that job position. This is usually stated in the job description as a whole. It is your duty to seek out the needed skills.
To get your next job, it is important for you to note these skills, determine whether you have the skills, research on the company you intend to interview with, understand what skills are required of the job and then work towards retaining those skills.
This is the ability to respect different opinions or perspectives of people. Every company expects its employees to work as a team to reach organizational goals. Interpersonal skills help you participate as a team leader, make decisions, and work efficiently with other employers.
A question that may be asked to test your interpersonal skills is this: “Tell me about a time when you had to work on a team with someone you did not get along with. What happened?”
This is a behavioral interview question. The best way to answer this is to talk about a past experience, how you reacted to it, the steps you took to resolve the situation to move forward with the team goals and the outcome of that step.
Do not be surprised at this. I bet you are wondering if this is really a skill you should be bothered about. Yes, it is. Every company has goals it aims to achieve as a unit.
It, therefore, expects to have employees who will be able to motivate and direct others into achieving its goals. You do not need to be the manager of a department before you can exhibit leadership skills. Leadership skills tend to go along with interpersonal skills.
If you are not sure which skill is required of you, a safe thing to do is to give a reply that shows both your interpersonal and leadership skills in the same scenario you intend to use.
An example of a behavioral question to test your leadership skill is: “Tell us about a time when you had to make changes within a team, were there any reluctance, and how did you go about it?”
Every employer expects to have an employee that communicates well, verbally, in writing and listens attentively to details. You should have good communication skills in these three areas so that you can relay messages across to your audience which may include other employees and possibly the company’s clients without being misunderstood.
Communication in this sense includes maintaining eye contact with your audience and general body language.
A question to test your verbal communication skill is: “Demonstrate how you vary your communication approach in relation to the audience you are addressing?”
Listening communication skills sample question: “Describe a situation where you had to deal with an angry customer?”
Writing skills sample question: “How do you feel writing a report differs from an oral presentation?”
The questions I have posed here are competency-based interview questions. In answering these questions, remember that you are at an interview. Do not get carried away. Think of times where you had to communicate either in your past work experience or at school (for new grads) and answer confidently.
4. Innovation and Creativity
This is the ability to see a problem and generate new ideas to give a solution to that problem. Your next employer expects you to add value to the organization as a whole. This may also be called problem-solving skills or critical thinking skills.
If you are innovative and creative then you should be able to solve problems. This is a skill one can acquire over time or develop. An example of a question to test this skill is: “Tell us about a project you felt should be handled with a different approach and how you managed it?”
5. Resilience and Tenacity
Often times we see on a job requirement “…candidates should possess the ability to work under pressure.”
This is the ability to manage stress, work pressure, and maintain a positive attitude in the work environment. This may also be called stress tolerance or you may choose to call this adaptability. A situational-based interview question that may be asked in this regard is: “Our company can be really busy at some time of the year, how to do intend to balance work and your lifestyle?”
6. Technical or Specialist
This is having the ability or knowledge to meet up with certain mathematical, scientific, engineering or computer related duties specific to your job itself. You may also classify it as numerical skills.
Also, irrespective of whether you see numeracy as important for your job, if you work on improving this skill, it may be used to your advantage and you may become a valuable asset to the company.Interview questions here may vary. It may most likely relate to things you have done in the past or mathematical questions to test your speed or accuracy.
An example is- What steps do you follow to study a problem (it may be a specific problem to the relevant industry) before making a decision and why?
7. Information Technology
Acquiring basic IT skills and knowing how to use a computer is essential to your employment opportunity as well as knowing how to use the internet.Depending on the particular job, in-depth knowledge of IT skills may be required. You may be given a practical test on this or asked a relative question.
Every employer expects to have an employee that can work with minimal or no general supervision. You should be able to act based on convictions. You may align risk-taking or decision making to this skill.
An example of an interview question on this is: “Tell us about a time where you made a decision that wasn’t yours to make and how did it turn out?”
9. Commercial or Organizational Awareness
You should be able to exhibit a good understanding of the organizational issues the company, you intend to apply to, may face.
An example of an interview question for this skill is: “Describe a project where you had to make input from other departments, when did you realize that you had to do this and how were you able to convince the major leaders to accept this idea?”
10. Time Management
You should be able to display to your prospective employer that you can manage time effectively, prioritize tasks or duties and meet set targets. You should also exhibit good planning and organization.
An example of an interview question for this is: “Give an example of a time where you had several things to do within a short time frame. How did you handle it and what were the results?”
Other skills that may be important are listed below. Be sure to note that it may be specific to the job you are applying for or you can develop on these skills to have an advantage.
11. Sales and Marketing
Yes, you did not study marketing and sales but your employer expects you to speak publicly about the company and get new clients if possible. An example of an interview question is: “Explain a time when you convinced someone to utilize your services?”
12. Integrity or Honesty
Some jobs require a high level of confidentiality or ethical practices. You should be able to convince your interviewer that you are trustworthy. A question that may be asked is: “Give an example of a policy you conformed to with which you did not agree and why?”
13. Attention to Detail
Some jobs require you to be meticulous. You probably have to type out several documents with no errors and false statements.
An example of a question for this is: “Give me an example of a time you discovered an error that had been made by a colleague. What did you do and what was the outcome?”
Generally speaking, other employability skills that may be required are: client focus, goal setting, sensitivity or empathy, teamwork which already goes in line with most of the skills, managing diversity, external awareness, delegation, conflict management, global skills which is the ability to speak other languages especially if it is necessary for that particular job, flexibility, negotiating or convincing, personal achievement, and self-awareness.
If you feel that you don’t have the skills required for a particular job, you can also work towards acquiring it and further develop the skills. Also, remember that it is your duty to research on the skills needed for the job you intend to get although most of the required skills are always stated in the job description.
If you need more clarifications, please do not hesitate to comment below and I will respond. Feel free to also give other skills you feel are important to get a job. Remember to subscribe to the blog for exclusive information and updates.