As a college graduate heading into the working world, you really need to have a certain set of skills that will have you ready to take on your first “real” job in the best way possible. Consider these skills essential no matter what field you’re in.
While you likely know how to work effectively with others, teamwork goes beyond simply deciding who does what on a major work project. It also involves picking up the slack when one person needs a little extra help, and staying late to make a deadline from time to time. As a team member, you need to find a way to work professionally with all co-workers, regardless of whether you get along. Most of all, avoid the phrase “It’s not my job” whenever possible.
Independence and Leadership.
This may seem like the opposite of working in a team, but employers also want someone who can do their work without requiring constant guidance – you may well have to “do more with less.” To that end, as companies have cut managers, they want employees who can take the lead, either for others or for doing their own work. This doesn’t mean you should avoid asking questions when you need help, but you should be able to self direct and take charge as necessary.
Writing a memo or even an email needs to go beyond texting-level writing. Anything you write and share needs to have correct grammar and spelling, and sound clear and concise. You also need to have good oral communication skills, meaning you need the ability to have a face-to-face conversation. Sadly, texting and social media has made this skill one less practiced by those entering the workforce, and it’s a key one that can make or break you in a job.
As stated above, be a team player but have the ability to work independently. Know how to fluently have a conversation, write an email, and send an instant message. Know that bosses come and go and priorities change, and you need to be able to respond accordingly. It will make your working life much more successful if you can say to someone, “Yes, I can make that adjustment.”
Make sure you nurture your skills through any part-time jobs and internships – they’ll help add depth to your resume. For help finding that first job, make sure to visit PrideStaff.