Job success depends on many different skills in order to further your career. Here are just a few to get you on the right track:
- Verbal communication: This is very important. You need to express clearly your thinking to your employer, staff, colleagues and clients. It really makes a big difference to know the right words and have a good solid vocabulary to express your ideas. One way to expand your vocabulary is to read a lot and when you don’t know one of the words you are reading search Google to find the meaning and memorise it. Begin to make sentences using the word so it becomes a part of your normal way of talking.
- Writing skills: This obviously goes together with verbal communication. Good writing makes a remarkable difference as it shows your level of education and allows you to express yourself clearly especially if your work relies on the use of emails. If this is one of your areas of concern do a short course on better writing in your spare time. You will soon reap the rewards.
- Negotiation skills: Being a successful networker and negotiator hinges on good listening. Listen to whoever you are speaking with regardless of it being a colleague, the boss or a client. Show a genuine interest in what they are saying and you will soon find you begin to gain their respect and acknowledgement.
- Networking skills: This is related to increasing bonds with clients, recruiting new talent and expanding your professional circle by attending conferences, seminars, workshops, etc. By doing this you will know what is happening outside your area and be able to predict future changes in your industry which will show others how forward thinking and innovative you can be.
- Empathy: Empathy is the ability to put yourself in the other person’s shoes, so to speak, and be able to see their perspective. It goes beyond understanding or listening. If you develop empathy for your colleagues and team it will motivate them and give you a tool to deflect internal conflicts in the work environment.
- Teamwork: It is taken for granted that teamwork is an essential skill but often lack of cooperation, competition and jealousy is common in the workplace. Boost communication amongst your peers by participation in social events and using humour to lighten situations when they seem to get heavy. Share common goals and use discretion when putting forward your thoughts although you should not be afraid to speak up if you have good ideas to increase profits.
- Critical thinking and problem solving: Part of doing your job well involves making decisions, evaluating ideas and brainstorming solutions. If you can demonstrate that you have the power of critical and creative thinking your status as a valuable employee will significantly improve.
- Time management: This is the corner stone of productivity but is also related to how you manage your own energy. You need to show that you can handle a lot of things quickly and still be efficient. The idea of multitasking here may be to your detriment. Instead learn to handle one thing at a time but to do it fast and well. Then turn all your focus to the next task. You may need to come back to the first task again at some stage, but always tackle one task at a time with focus and discipline. You will find this attitude will work much better for you than the usual multitasking of trying to do too many things and once and messing it up.
- Self-confidence and assertiveness: You need to show that you are aware of your abilities and you know your job. If you believe you are right you need to assert your point of view but always with respect and empathy. If you are wrong then apologise. Be aware that there is thin line between confidence and arrogance. There is nothing wrong with being confident however being arrogant places you above the other person and will not win you any points.
- Computer literacy: We live in a computer and technological age and you must be up to date with new technology and software in your field, as well as new techniques used in your industry. Don’t let yourself get left behind by not researching the latest in your spare time.
You will note that a lot of these tips are not standard educational tools of an industry. These are part of what it means to be emotionally mature when it comes to work ethic. There are many courses about that can help you grow on a personal level to assist you to advance your career. Our organisation works with individuals and companies in this area.