Essential Soft Skills to Excel in your Job Search

4 minutes

The jobs market is fiercely competitive, and while we still find ourselves in a market predominantly driven by candidates, it’s important for those seeking work to remain proactive and engaged in their own brand and development. It’s about setting yourself apart from others seeking the same career opportunities, effectively demonstrating your strong soft skills to make you more attractive to potential employers.

While industry relevant experience and role specific skills are still of high importance when exploring new senior level job opportunities, placing emphasis on the development of some of the core soft skills and really boost your employability and overall success in developing your career.

Why is it important to development soft skills in today’s job market?

Technology and AI are rapidly evolving and this will only continue in the coming years. As a result, those activities that require critical thinking, collaboration and traits such as empathy cannot be carried out by automated processes or AI. Therefore, soft skills will allow businesses and individuals the opportunity to navigate the human elements that machine learning and technology cannot replace.

The changing landscape of the workplace with increased hybrid working and a globalized workforce also highlights the pressing need for enhanced soft skills to ensure effective collaboration and teamwork, relationship building and a greater understanding of diverse cultures, perspectives and approaches.

In today’s market, employers are looking at the overall value an employee can bring to the business, and this goes beyond performing the day-to-day duties of the role in question. There’s a much bigger picture for leaders and hiring managers to look at when seeking talent for their organisation. They look for individuals who can contribute to the workplace culture, who can offer solutions to potential challenges and those who can collaborate and communicate effectively across the business. Soft skills can enable an individual to thrive in the right work environment and contribute to the overall success of a business.

Abby Child highlights; “Your soft skills are what set you apart and will be the first thing interviewers or recruiters will pick up on, especially when interviewing for a role. The ability to mirror your interviewer, client, prospect is something that constantly needs work on a personal basis. Our innate ability to adapt to whoever we are speaking too is paramount and will consequently set you apart from your competition. If there is any advice I would give it is, don’t be afraid to be yourself and showcase your personality through your soft skills.”

What soft skills are in demand?

At CSG Talent, our teams of expert recruiters around the world liaise with businesses and candidates daily, understanding the soft skills in demand from clients and educating and guiding candidates to develop and enhance their skillsets to put them in a prime position for new job opportunities. Here are some of the top soft skills in demand this year:

Communication skills

Having effective communication skills in both a verbal and written form is essential in todays market, and is often overlooked as a simple skill. To have the confidence and ability to articulate thoughts and ideas in a concise and persuasive way is a desirable skill to have. Other aspects of effective communication include the ability to listen and display empathy to others.

Leadership skills

Demonstrating strong leadership skills isn’t just for those who are in a leadership position, managing a team of direct reports, it’s also about showcasing how you can motivate others, inspire peers and be someone to aspire towards. An individual with good leadership skills can take initiative with ease to create and facilitate a positive, productive and engaging work environment to drive results and employee engagement.

Problem solving skills and Critical thinking skills

Having the ability to offer potential solutions through effective problem solving is a highly sought after skill for employers, if you can effectively highlight, review and solve problems it can add value in any role or business. Critical thinking skills will allow you to objectively analyse behaviours, processes and information to make informed decisions in potentially complex and challenging situations, evaluating different perspectives and eliminating any potential bias.

Teamwork

No matter what stage of your career, working collaboratively as a team and being a team player is an important skill to have. Effective teamwork skills are driven by good communication, clear and achievable team goals, positive attitude, respect for one another and strong delegation skills. Active participation in teamwork is essential to building trusted relationships and working well together.

Adaptability

There will always be change and challenge within a business so it’s important to be flexible, open-minded and have the ability to adjust and adapt. In today’s fast paced world and ever-evolving technologies, learning new skills and processes quickly is a great way to demonstrate adaptability.

Time management

Effective time management, prioritisation and organisational skills are key for any role to ensure you efficient, productive and drive results. This is the same for a leader, having these skills you can help motivate and inspire your team to model the same successful behaviours.

Emotional Intelligence and Empathy

A positive work environment can be achieved with a strong cohort of employees, especially senior leaders who display empathy and strong emotional intelligence. To effectively manage and understand the emotions of yourself and others is a key part of building relationships, understanding and communicating with others and navigating any potential conflict or challenge. Emotional intelligence and empathy are highly desirable skills to demonstrate within a business and can add value to all areas.

There will always be a human element which new technology cannot replace, therefore soft skills will remain an important factor in self-development and career growth. It’s important to stay ahead of the curve and remain competitive in the market whether you are looking for a new opportunity or are happy in your current role. These skills will allow you to add value to your day-to-day role and ensure you are well-equipped to adapt and succeed in what is an ever-evolving jobs market.

In the latest Global LinkedIn Data report, the top five soft skills for recruiters were highlighted as communication, relationship building, adaptability, problem solving and business acumen. It’s said that for recruiters with one or more of these soft skills will see three times more promotions than those without. Our Learning & Development team at CSG Talent not only support in training at the onboarding stage of employees journeys, but they deliver ongoing, comprehensive training to support the career growth of all employees.

Creating a culture of learning and development is essential for businesses to thrive in today’s fast-paced environment. By tailoring approaches to individual needs, empowering top performers to share their knowledge, rewarding upskilling efforts, accommodating different learning styles and recognising the value of soft skills; organisations can unlock the true potential of employees and drive growth.

“I’ve often found that these soft skills are best learned and developed in an open, conversational environment. Greater success is experienced through workshops and learning lounges where people are encouraged to speak up and share their own experiences and opinions.” Maria Temple.

Speak to an executive recruiter

At CSG Talent, our expert teams guide candidates at a mid to senior level of their career in sourcing new career opportunities either in the short, or long term. If you’re keen to explore more content to support your overall career development, click here. Alternatively, if you’d be interested in a confidential conversation to discuss potential career development opportunities or hear more about our candidate services, get in touch with our team.