Make 2021 the year you improve your job skills!
Remote work is here to stay, and to continue succeeding and thriving, you need to start focusing on the skills that make you indispensable.
I bet you’re saying, “well, I have a degree and a certification, isn’t that enough?” It’s a great start, but you also need to start looking at the soft skills that are going to set you apart. Wondering what those are? To help, we surveyed our top recruiters to get their take. Here’s what they had to say.
1. Continuous Learning
In today’s world, this could not be more true, as those who learn, grow, and those who grow, lead. At AMTRA, we love to hear about our employees’ learning aspirations and are keen when our candidates tell us about the courses they’re enrolled in. If you don’t want to get left behind, make continuous learning a top priority this year.
“Continuous learning is the minimum requirement for success in any field.” Brian Tracy
2. Strong Written Skills
Simply put, you need to practice good communication to become an expert. With more than 50% of our remote communication done via writing, it’s never been more important to be an eloquent communicator. That means, take your time when drafting written notes. Check spelling, grammar, punctuation and proofread everything before you send it out.
"Communication works for those who work at it.” John Powell
3. Time Management
With the acceptance of remote work, time management is more important than ever. Your employer needs to trust you can manage your time and get your work done without them looking over your shoulder. Try prioritizing your tasks for the next day before signing off, and putting the biggest tasks first. Once you tackle those, the rest will come easy, and you'll be more likely to stay on target.
“Time isn’t the main thing. It’s the only thing." Miles Davis
4. Decision Making
Leaders are those who have the ability to assess the criteria in front of them and come to a decision on a consistent basis, even if you're sometimes wrong. This ability will mark you as a person who gets things done. It also shows that you're willing to take risks - which is a great thing.
“Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision." Peter F. Drucker
That's why learning to work as a team is so important. Embracing collaboration and thinking about it proactively shows your boss or hiring manager that while you may be working alone in your home, you're still a team player. Take a stab at learning cross-functionally. While you may not be able to do everything, learning how and why other teams do what they do will help you work together on any project with understanding and patience.
"Great things in business are never done by one person." Steve Jobs
6. Creativity and Resilience
It has been said that resilience is a creative super power, which is why it goes hand in hand with creativity. Being creative puts you in the driver’s seat for finding solutions and new ideas that move the needle for your company. New ideas don't always work, but being able to rebound from a setback with new ideas shows employers that you’re invested and willing to do what it takes to progress the company.
"Passion, creativity and resilience are the most crucial skills in business." Jo Malone
This is so true, especially given the balance we must find between working remote and being productive. Your ability to focus is an invaluable skill. Maintain focus by blocking out the visual and audible distractions. Noise cancelling headphones are fantastic, as is the power of an organized workspace. Remove as much clutter from your space, so your focus is only on your work. Embrace the fact that there will be interruptions and don’t dwell on an interruption when it happens.
"Your focus determines your reality." George Lucas
As technology evolves, you need to find innovative ways to use it. That means being adaptable to new technology, new collaborations, and new philosophies to succeed. The flexibility of remote work means you have to be prepared to adapt to new ways of working, sporadic changes, and unexpected situations. Sometimes all it takes is a bit of creative problem solving to find a solution.
"It's not the strongest or most intelligent who will survive, but those who can best manage change." Charles Darwin
9. Change Management
As noted, the pace of change is quick and constant. Having a knack for change management, whether that means handling changes on your own or helping to guide whole teams on new directives, is a great way to make yourself an irreplaceable part of nearly any organization. Take a class or read a book on emotional intelligence because a major part of change management is understanding how changes affect employees on a personal level.
"The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new." Socrates
10. Project Management
That's why understanding the full scope of your projects and being able to manage them from concept to completion is critical. With the emergence of more remote work, it's harder for management to keep tabs on every project, so having employees who are skilled at project management makes their lives easier. It also sets you up to help others and possibly move into your own management role.
"Operations keep the lights on, strategy provides light at the end of the tunnel and project management is the engine that moves the organization forward." Joy Gumz
What job skills do you think are important? We’d love to hear from you. Send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Interested in what you can do to get noticed by recruiters? Read our blog Recruitment has Changed Overnight.