As a student you are in University to prepare yourself for a future job and make a brilliant career out of it, right? The only problem is that in the same position as you are thousands of other students. With so much competition, most companies started to make even more complex and harsh their recruit programs, seeming almost impossible to get your dream job.
This means, now more than ever, that once you get an interview you’ll need to prove yourself not only as capable worker but also as a person who has the soft skills that those companies look for. So your education and work experience are very important, but your values as person are even more meaningful for you to get a job in a dream company.
So here we present the top skills companies look for in a candidate:
This one may seem a little obvious, but it is undoubtedly the most essential value that a company wants for their employees. Mainly because with self organisation you can contribute more for a stable environment and do your job more quickly and efficiently. And besides that, being organised avoids that you “may” lose those papers that your boss is waiting for in a Monday morning.
Effort and Ambition
Every company knows that an ambitious employee it’s also a hardworking one. If you have career goals you want to achieve you will work hard to get it. And that’s why ambition and effort means so much for the companies that are hiring. Have in mind that ambition cannot be blind, this value should be combined with the others referred on this list to avoid overstepping your colleagues and showing a bad attitude. Putting it simple, companies just want people that do their best while being honest and respectful!
So just to clarify being honest on your workplace it’s a different concept that being honest on your life, with your friends for example, and that’s mainly because you can’t say everything you want and just use the excuse of “I’m a honest person!”. Being honest at your job means that you won’t use tricks for your advantage, so not using more “My dog is sick, I can’t go today” kind of excuses and stop stealing John’s yogurt from the fridge may be a nice way to start being honest.
The importance of this one has grown over the years in most companies. Mostly because these companies are also more involved in social and environmental matters. Being solidary it’s even easier than you may think, because if on one hand you can help with donations and voluntary work on associations, on the other hand you can just help your colleagues with their problems and make people know that you are available for helping others doing their job and not just your own.
Being open-minded can really make a difference when you are being interviewed for a job. Companies look for a person who is tolerant and that recognises the value of the diversity and ways of thinking. Above all, companies want a person with social values. Someone who is respectful with people from other races, religions, sexual orientations and with different beliefs and experiences than his.
Being capable of solving different and defiant problems it’s a big advantage when you go to a job interview and normally recruiters test you with tricky questions to see how you untangle problems. Companies look for employees with this capacity because whatever your job is, you will need to solve different problems and come up with creative and pragmatic solutions. So for this you just need to show that you can easily adapt to different situations and come up with new solutions.
Being top of the class and the fastest to finish your assignments are great things that many companies value, but nowadays that isn’t enough. There are many people who do their work fine and fast, but there aren’t that much that can think in a different way and get better results. So creativity has a different meaning depending on what type of company you are heading to, but it’s always important to think out of the box and see things in a different perspective.
The last one it’s a bit of a cliché, but this list wouldn’t be complete without it. Being happy with your job and doing something you love is the most important aspect a company looks for in an employee. If you are happy with what you do, you will do a better job and be more creative and proactive. Besides, if you are happy you will easily contribute to a better work environment and consequently to a better company!
Now that you know what skills companies look for in a candidate, it’s time to get your CV ready and start preparing for those job interviews.
Thanks for reading this post!
My name is Miguel Romisio, I'm 20 years old and I'm studying Management at ISEG (from Universidade de Lisboa). I see myself as an hardworking and interested young man and I have a great desire to learn with my professional and personal experiences.