Success Qualities for the Workplace
Employers search for employees who have the qualification and attributes that contribute toward an organization’s success. This success may involve a number of different objectives: improving market share, research and development of new products, quality customer service, recognition as a leader in a particular industry, inroads into new markets, higher profits, global expansion, etc.
In order to succeed, to grow, to remain solvent, businesses are well aware that they must be alert to global trends and to what’s happening in the economy. As such, they must employ people with the qualities and competencies that are necessary to stay current in an information-based constantly changing economy.
Now, in order for you to effectively manage your career, you must know what employers know. That means you need to know and develop the qualities that are most valued in the workplace and that will simultaneously enable you to get hired, stay employed and get ahead. These qualities are your toolbox of competencies and attributes that promote your contribution to any organization, as well as, equip you with the transferable skills needed in many organizations. What follows are several listings of qualities employers have identified as important in their hiring and firing decisions.
- Foundation Skills
- Basic Skills (reading, writing, math, speaking, listening); Thinking Skills (making decisions, solving problems, reasoning, creativity, learning, seeing things in the mind's eye); Personal Qualities (responsibility, self-esteem, social skills, self-management, integrity).
- Using Resources, Interpersonal Skills, Handling Information, Understanding Systems, Technology.
(Source: SCANS-Secretary’s Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills)
- Communication, Teamwork, Time Management, Problem-solving, Organizational, Knowing how to learn, Computer skills, Listening, Creativity and Leadership.
- Ability to Learn, Adaptability, Analysis, Communication Skills, Energy, Initiative, Innovation/Creativity, Integrity, Interpersonal Skills, Judgment/Decisive, Planning & Organizing, Resilience, Sensitivity (to others), Stress Tolerance, Technical/Professional Knowledge, Tenacity, Work Standards.
(Source: Pfizer Inc)
- Fundamental Skills
- Communication, Manage Information, Use Numbers, Think & Solve Problems.
- Personal Management Skills
- Demonstrate Positive Attitudes & Behaviors, Be Responsible, Be Adaptable, Learn Continuously, Work Safely.
- Teamwork Skills
- Work with Others, Participate in Projects & Tasks.
(Source: The Conference Board of Canada)
Consider selecting 2 to 5 of the above skills or attributes to develop over the next 6 months. Select the ones that you would like to improve upon and identify several action steps to take to achieve your desired skills.
Here’s an example:
Goal: Improve Communication Skills
Steps to Achieving Your Goal: I will...
- Enroll in Oral Communications, fall semester.
- Volunteer to ask or answer a question during each class.
- Practice reading out loud and into a tape recorder.
- Have a good friend give honest feedback as to how clear I am when expressing myself.
- Model the behavior patterns and speech style of someone I admire as a good speaker.