Some people have no idea what to expect when they start work. But most expect to succeed. What does it take to move from being a student, and/or unemployed, or perhaps only ever having had a few casual jobs of little significance? And who cares?
A fast track to failure can happen for a multitude of reasons:
- Anxiety and inability to communicate clearly
- Lack of skills
- Feeling entitled and making demands
- Not grasping important concepts
- Failing to impress at job interviews
- Not being open to learning
- Being unable to complete tasks and achieve results
I put together some videos to help people, especially young people, appreciate these core skills for success.
Here are the ten ways to make sure you nail those employability attributes that impress others, put you in demand and in the success spotlight:
1. Make a great impression
Don’t look grubby or untidy, or be too casual or dismissive. Dress for success, be enthusiastic and introduce yourself professionally and warmly. And don’t forget names and key points. Remember details.
2. Communicate effectively
Don’t display as someone bored and uninterested – show positive body language and tone, communicate professionally, and instead of interrupting listen and respect. Don’t be too cool or sound stupid – and impress others on the phone, in emails and face to face by being clear and engaging.
3. Be confident and assertive
Don’t be timid. Speak with confidence, overcome personal blocks and be assertive. Be knowledgeable and switched on. Don’t get stuck on negativity. Change yourself. Ask for help.
4. Set and achieve goals
Be clear about your goals and steps to achieve them and persist. Don’t expect success. Determine realistic measurable goals. Achieve results within a time frame. Be persistent with SMART goals.
5. Prioritise and organise
Plan for success, manage yourself efficiently and prioritise to get results. Don’t be messy or haphazard. Get yourself organised by working out priorities, planning tasks effectively and being punctual. Don’t freak when overloaded. Learn to manage pressure.
6. Contribute to the team
Speak at meetings, volunteer to help and collaborate with others. Don’t display apathy or continually complain. Participate positively in meetings, choose to communicate and collaborate. Adapt and solve problems. Show initiative and do your best every time.
7. Appreciate feedback
Welcome feedback without defensiveness and continually improve. Don’t be antagonistic, stay open and learn from mistakes, ask for advice. Practice feedback skills – ask for it and give it in a thoughtful, factual and respectful way.
8. Build employability skills
Find ways to learn new skills, manage your emotions and speak impressively.
Don’t wait for support. Be proactive and find mentors. Be calm with difficult people and don’t sound vague and amateurish. Talk yourself up, and deliver accordingly!
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9. Demonstrate strengths
Surprise people with knowledge, experience and self-awareness. Don’t forget relevant experience you’ve had, and use that experience to shine. Never underestimate research. Surprise people with knowledge and turn skills into strengths. Grow through self-awareness and show genuine passion.
10. Impress at job interviews
Don’t be vague. Create a wow response by quality preparation and interview skills. Impress from the start. Don’t be mediocre. Wow with research and a great résumé written by YOU! Give powerful examples. Answer challenging questions skillfully.
Never waste opportunities. Ask clever questions.
Try and aim to be perceived as a high achiever and deliver results to match!