If you’re a business owner that’s been trying to hire lately, we don’t have to tell you that recruiting times are tough!
The US unemployment rate has hit record lows of 3.6% nationwide. That means that the number of people that you have flooding in to accept your positions is… Well, slim to nill.
Still, just because your options are limited doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t hire employees that possess the right employability skills. After all, hiring no new team member is better than hiring a bad one.
Below, we guide you through what the top soft employability skills are in today’s market so that you have a good understanding of what your prospective employees should bring to the table.
If your team member can’t communicate then they aren’t going to be of much value to you.
Things move fast in business. Conditions change, needs evolve, and everyone on your team needs to be open to talking to one another to keep important stuff from falling through the cracks.
To gauge if a prospective employee is a good communicator, pay attention to how they articulate themselves during their interview. If they’re able to get their points across under the pressure of meeting with you, they’ll do fine on the work floor.
No team member that needs to be micromanaged needs to be on your team. Those kinds of people are just too much trouble to deal with.
While giving guidance when a new employee is starting out is something that you should always be open to, once they have the tools they need, your team member should have the drive to navigate their day to day with nominal oversight.
Look for clues in your prospective employee’s work history to see where they’ve demonstrated the ability to manage tasks on their own.
3. The will to learn
It’s okay if a new employee doesn’t know everything, as long as they’re willing to learn.
10 out of 10 times you should take a less experienced person that’s eager to be brought up to speed over a more experienced person that thinks that they know how to do everything. At the end of the day, the person that wants to learn is going to be a much better cultural fit for your organization.
We always look for positivity among employability skills when bringing on a new team member. The reason being that negativity is contagious.
That person that comes into the office every day and talks about how much they hate coming to work is going to bring everyone’s mood down. That mood reduction may then leave other people disillusioned with their responsibilities.
Bottom line: We get that work isn’t always fun. You shouldn’t require that your team pretend that it is. What you should want though are team members that are always willing to make the most of their situation.
5. Critical thinking
Every person on your team should have the capacity to innovate. In today’s cut-throat marketplace, there’s just no room for the person that simply pushes a new piece of paper each morning and clocks out.
Employees should learn data science to make sense out of business trends. They should be able to offer suggestions based on problems that are brought up in meetings. They should care enough about their work to try and leave a positive mark on it.
Not every day in the office is going to be a bucket of rainbows. Some days are going to be downright spirit-breaking.
Don’t hire people that can only operate under no-pressure conditions. Always seek out people that, again, make the most out of a bad situation and are willing to continue doing their best under fire day in and day out.
Those are the people that you’re going to want in your corner when adversity strikes.
Why is leadership always among the important employability skills that you should be mindful of when hiring people, even for non-managerial positions?
Because you should be thinking about the long game whenever you’re hiring.
You’re not just hiring some lowly pawn when you’re filling a position. You should be hiring somebody that you feel can learn and be groomed into somebody that can have a deep impact on your organization.
A big tell as to whether or not the person you’re hiring can be that special somebody for your company down the line is how much of a leader they are today.
So, ask your prospective candidate what makes them a leader.
There’s a popular saying that says something to the effect of “a disorganized person is a smart person”. In our opinion, a disorganized person is more likely to be someone that misses things than somebody that blows you away with their intellect.
That’s why, as a final employability skill must, you should seek somebody that demonstrates their ability to keep things neat and accessible.
Our final thoughts on employability skills
Turning over employees can get expensive. That’s one of the main reasons why, when you’re hiring, you want to find the right person the first time around.
To give yourself the best odds of doing that, we recommend keeping a keen eye out for the employability skills that we’ve outlined above.
Our team wishes you the best of luck in filling your vacant role!
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