Careful listening, collaboration, asking good questions—these “soft skills” aren’t always taught in school.
Today’s college graduates need every skill-related edge they can get when it comes to applying for and landing a full-time job.
Numerous surveys and reports indicate that recent U.S. college graduates face a wildly competitive job market along with astronomical student loan debt. More than 40% of recent graduates are underemployed and 16% are working part-time jobs, according to Accenture’s 2013 College Graduate Employment Survey.
One employer survey, conducted by staffing company Adecco, indicates that 44% of responding companies cited “soft skills, such as communication, critical thinking, creativity, and collaboration” as the area with “the biggest gap.”
Additionally, a Talent Shortage Survey from ManpowerGroup discovered that nearly one in five employers worldwide is unable to fill positions because they can’t find people with soft skills.
So what are these soft skills—and other critical workplace skills—that are necessary to join today’s collaborative, fast-moving, real-time workforce? Here are five: