5 important skills for your career
Skill №1: Active listening or active listening skills
Active listening is the ability to focus on the speaker, to understand their thoughts and message. It is important to hear, not just listen: you need to be in the moment, not to think about your thoughts or visualize your vacation.
What are the benefits of an active listening skill?
- Network Extension
- The opportunity to learn from someone else's experience
- New knowledge
How to become an active listener?
Using verbal and non-verbal techniques
1) Express the idea of the speaker in your own words
When talking, summarize the main points the person shared with you to show them that you fully understand their meaning. For example: "You say that the content management system is poorly debugged, and you need to work on it, yes?".
2) Ask open-ended questions
Show that you understand the essence of what the other person shared. For example: “You're right, the implementation procedure may require a software change. How can I help you with that?”
3) Insert confirmation phrases into your speech
Short, positive statements will help the speaker feel more comfortable and show your involvement. Use the following phrases in your speech: "I understand," "Yes, it makes sense," " I agree”
4) Nod, smile and maintain visual content
This is a great strategy to show your conversation partner that you are fully engaged in communication, and earn “brownie points” from them for the meeting.
5) Do not be distracted and be in the moment
A glance at your watch or phone can hurt the other person, and most likely this will reduce your chances of further productive cooperation.
So, the process of communication can bring a positive result while using the techniques described above. This will help you achieve success in your career and get a +1 star to your professional image.
Skill №2: Problem-solving or Problem-solving
Employers value people who can independently analyze tasks, brainstorm, make smart decisions and solve problems.
How do I learn to solve problems?
1) Acquire more knowledge
Regardless of your field of specialization, the easiest way to solve problems is to have strong working knowledge. Fill in the gaps with additional training and constant practice.
2) Look for opportunities to solve problems
Immerse yourself in new activities. Intentionally participate in various projects, for example, in another team or outside of your company. This will help you grow into a flexible and versatile expert.
Skill №3: Self-presentation or self-promotion
Success at work depends on how competent and involved you are. But what do you do to make people notice your growth and achievements?
How to become a corporate athlete in the eyes of colleagues?
1) If you are interested, feel free to tell us about yourself
If someone asked you to reveal your positive qualities, be sure to do it. For example, you may be asked: How did you finish the project so quickly? What do you want to do next?
When a person describes their achievements in response to a direct question, others do not see it as self-promotion. If you evade the answer, it could raise some doubts.
2) If someone talks about themselves, share your experience in return
When someone shares something with you, respond in that manner. In situations where others talk about their achievements, you can successfully present your own, without showing selfishness.
3) Find yourself a promoter
When someone else says that you are an expert in your field, it is read by people far better than when you say that about yourself.
To find a promoter, always be in sight: Communicate with colleagues, managers; become useful to them. Then, these people will be happy to present you to others.
4) Keep your balance
Even if you see a great chance to assert yourself, keep in mind the balance between listening and speaking, to minimize selfish behaviour.
Skill №4: Creativity
Creativity is your wild card. Fresh solutions give companies a competitive edge, so employers value employees who can break the rules sometimes and come up with something worthwhile and new.
How to develop your imagination?
1) Use mind maps
With the help of applications, you can structure your basic thoughts and expand the idea in any direction. This method involves the two hemispheres of your brain at once, helping you come up with important ideas and directions.
2) Study the cases
Analyze the success stories of your colleagues and other companies, and develop your vision. Ask questions: Why? What for? How? This process is sure to give you new ideas.
3) Read books
Everyone has a creative bone, and books are a great way to pump it up. Author content on this topic is now plentiful, from "Creative by the Rules" by Tina Seelig, to“Flexible Mind" by Estanislao Bahrah. Choose what you like, do your homework and create a new reality.
Skill №5: Universal skills or transferable skills
These are abilities that you can take with you when moving to another job or changing your field of activity. Because of their versatility, these skills are of interest to any employer, regardless of the industry.
Skills that every employer will appreciate:
1) Communication skills: interpersonal communication, presentation, public speaking, negotiation and non-verbal communication.
2) Analytical skills: research, brainstorming, analysis, interpretation of data and metrics, problem-solving and diagnostics.
3) Management skills: conflict resolution, personnel management, project management, organizational skills, recruitment, time management, logistics and risk management.
4) Leadership skills: motivating others, making decisions, collaborating, providing feedback, strategic thinking, influencing and critical thinking.
5) Computer and technical skills: MS Office, database management, Web (HTML, CSS), social media, hardware installation and configuration, etc.