Your Soft Skills Set You Apart
Have you ever worked with someone who was talented at their job but impossible to get along with? Most of us have at some point in our career, and unfortunately some of us have also been that difficult co-worker from time to time. Although simply possessing the necessary experience and qualifications for a job might have been enough to receive a job offer in the past, the work environment itself is starting to become a top priority for many businesses, because companies are recognizing that positive work cultures influence the productivity and success of their employees. Therefore, hiring managers are now evaluating a lot more than just the highlighted bullet points on resumes; they are also looking for candidates who exhibit soft skills set during their interview. Refining this skill set can truly set you apart from the crowd and often be the determining factor in securing a job offer.
Define Your Soft Skills
Soft skills are defined as a set of intrapersonal traits that include communication skills, leadership abilities, social skills, work ethic, and more. Many of these involve interactions with others, so the more relatable and genuine you are, the more people will enjoy working with you. And since insurance is a service-oriented industry, this extends to your clients as well, particularly if you are in a customer-facing role. Don’t underestimate the power of your soft skills when it comes to your career growth. Employers want to hire diligent people who will contribute to a positive work environment, so even if you are not the most qualified candidate for a job, showing your strengths in communication, leadership, trust-building, perseverance, etc. to the hiring manager could set you apart from others applying for the same job.
Disclose Your Soft Skills
When you are in the market for a new position, part of your preparation for job searching should include recognizing your strongest soft skills and how they might be best used on the job. Take the time to examine the job description, identify specific soft skills that would be the most valuable for that position, translate them onto your resume, and show how they aid you in the workplace. During interviews, it’s vital to communicate your soft skills in a clear and professional manner; Roger Lear with Great Insurance Jobs gives a great example of how to do this in the article Soft Skills Are the Key to Landing a Job in 2019. It will give the hiring manager a complete picture of you as an employee, interacting with co-workers and representing the company to customers.
Develop Your Soft Skills
When contemplating soft skills, the best mindset to take is that they are not set in stone. Make it your constant aim to refine existing skills and develop new ones. For example, if your career goals include a move into management, then think about the qualities that a manager should exhibit that would help the team thrive under his or her leadership and find ways to put them into your practice. You might possess exemplary communication abilities but struggle in the area of time management; spend some time learning a method of how to manage your action steps more efficiently and practice it regularly until it becomes second nature. Both professional and personal development are vital for career growth and showing your commitment to each one will leave a great impression with future employers.
As companies begin emphasizing the importance of soft skills more often, focusing on honing and developing them will make you an asset to any organization. Practicing and improving your skill set will continue to benefit you throughout your career. If you are currently seeking new employment in the insurance industry and would like some guidance in how to present your soft skills on your resume or during interviews, we would love to help. Contact us here or take a look at our current job openings. We are here to assist you any way we can.