Archive for Soft Skills
How can you handle answering those tough interview questions and why do employers use them? This is Part 2 of our series on strange interview questions…
Why do employers use these kinds of questions?
Employers use them for several reasons including, getting them to divulge something that they may not have otherwise, or had not prepared for while getting ready for the interview. It could be to see how they think on their feet but also to get answers that are not canned or prepared so they can see how they answer authentically. Some employers feel if they can catch you off guard, they’ll get a more honest or authentic answer from you.
Here are some other examples of odd interview questions…
- What have you disliked about previous jobs or employers?
- You seem overqualified for this position, how would you address that issue?
- They’ll give you a scenario like a client calls you with X problem and is very upset, how would you handle it?
- If you could be any song or animal, what would you be?
How you can prepare for these unique questions…
- Prepare 5 stories of success, failures, challenges you addressed and weaknesses *and how you handle or manage them now.
- Have 5 things you want to ensure you get across during the interview that demonstrate why you are qualified and how you can help them.
- Understand and be able to communicate what your soft skills are, in addition to hard skills (communication, work ethic, ability to work in a team, etc.)
- Be clear about and able to communicate why you want their job, what your long term career goals are and why that position fits into those goals.
- Identify what your values and priorities are in terms of your career, and how your work performance would reflect those
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I really liked this article from the Huffington Post about leveraging your “maturity”, or your age when you’re looking for a new job: Looking For a Job? Make Maturity Work for You!
We’re constantly reminded about the problems with age-ism and discrimination related to that and it doesn’t help. You can’t change your age, so focus on why it is a plus or positive thing, instead of worrying about it affecting your job search. Leverage it, tout it, and be proud of the experience you bring to the table! I promise you that it is worth a lot. You get to choose the perspective you take on your qualifications, and taking a negative one certainly won’t help. So ask yourself, “Why is my age, and my specific work experience, a positive thing? How does my unique set of skills and background set me apart from other job seekers in my industry?”
Focus on the positive aspects of your situation, such as these two mentioned in the article:
You have market knowledge and a well-honed skill set gained over years of experience. You need less time on the job training and can hit the ground running…
You have life skills gained over years of experience dealing with people. Remember those soft skills are ones that employers can’t teach you and can make the difference between you being hired over someone else. They can train you on their software, teach you how to be a better sales person, but they can’t teach you to have a strong work ethic or be a team player. Your life skills that come with age are invaluable.
If you’d like more help on your job search, please contact us today for a complimentary consultation.
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It is important to consistently stay in touch with your peers in your industry, not just for networking purposes but to rejuvenate your interest in your field. I was excited to attend a CTI workshop recently, and this workshop really rejuvenated my interest in coaching. CTI is a coaching school that I attended years ago, and being back there with my fellow coaches for this workshop was like coming home for me. I felt like I was with “my people” again, and it renewed my energy and enthusiasm for being a coach. This is really something I think we all need to do. We can feel stale sometimes when we’ve been doing the same thing for a while!
I also wanted to mention to you a cool benefit I’m happy to give you. From that workshop, I have $200 off coupons for CTI’s core fundamentals course. If you would like one, I’m happy to mail it to you. They can be used anywhere in the US and would be useful for anyone wanting to improve their leadership skills, management skills, and relationship skills inside and outside the workplace. Just let me know! Here’s the CTI website to learn more: www.thecoaches.com
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I was honored to be featured on TV in Macon recently where I discussed the importance of Soft Skills in a tough economy. There are so many people who are unemployed, that the employers can pick whoever they want. The way you can stand out is to focus on your soft skills. What do you have to offer in this tough job market?
You can watch the news segment here: http://www.41nbc.com/blogs/coreen/8813-career-coach-urges-you-to-promote-soft-skills
Check out my latest YouTube video where I discuss a study that was done several years ago of about 1,000 recruiters who were surveyed to find out what is important in a prospective candidate. What do Employers look for? Recruiters and employers said the top things they felt were important for prospective employees are the soft skills. The soft skills are things that employers can’t teach. Keep this in mind in your job search.
Watch this video as I discuss a recent article about soft skills being the #1 thing employers are looking for. Your past work experience and your talents matter, but your ability to be a team leader or effectively communicate are just as important. Always remember in your job search and your job interviews that you have to focus on your soft skills just as much as your hard skills.