What’s Not in a Job Description?

Job DescriptionThe chance to succeed in your job, and in your career, often comes down to the possession of technical skills and soft skills. Irrespective of your industry or position soft skills influence the way you interact with others, your manager, approach conflict and, ultimately, influences whether your career thrives or withers. Organizations often struggle to articulate these skills and frequently don’t screen job candidates for them. Here are three soft skills that are essential for career success.

Emotional Intelligence
You might be the best in the world at what you do, but if you alienate coworkers and rub your managers the wrong way, no one is going to want to work with you. That’s where your emotional intelligence quotient, or EQ, comes in. Understanding what makes your colleagues tick, how to build rapport and connect emotionally with them and how to manage your own and other people’s emotional makeup will pay off enormously at work. You’ll be equipped to choose the right battles (and the times to fight them!) and be prepared to finesse sticky situations.

Openness to Feedback
If you’ve ever worked with someone who got defensive at the slightest suggestion that they do something differently, you know how crucial being open to feedback is. Feedback plays a crucial role in helping you spot opportunities. Openness to feedback is even more important if you are a team leader. To manage well, you need to be persistent about learning from experience, incorporating lessons into practice and adapting your methods into an effective approach.

Integrity at work means not hiding a mistake that reflects poorly on you, doing what you say you’re going to do, make decisions on new information even if it shows you were wrong and not being afraid to say “I don’t know.” Building a reputation for integrity pays off in spades. When people know that your priority is to be honest and objective, you’ll will be taken more seriously, get the benefit of the doubt in he-said/she-said situations. If you’re a tram leader, when your team knows you’re a fair judge, they’re more likely to buy into your decisions, even when it doesn’t go their way.

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James E. McClain is the author of Successful Career Development: A Game Plan, the book upon which some of our training programs are based. He has over 30 years' experience as a corporate HR executive, small business owner with ongoing experience in career development and as a college instructor. His educational background includes a B.S. and Masters degrees Education and Certification in Financial Planning. Our promise is that "you can pay more for training but you can not buy better training." The mission is to deliver the most effective and cost effective training and development programs.

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Posted in Hiring, Leadership

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