What Employers Really Want (Part I)

What Employers Really Want (Part I)Upsell your “Street Smart” characteristics

While “book smarts” are important to an employer, don’t overlook the “street smarts” you’ve acquired over the years and be sure to emphasise them throughout your cover letter, resume and interview to give you the edge. Organisations will always value people who will be able to adapt to diverse situations and your “street smarts” may just offer a prospective employer that very ability.

Here are some of the “street smarts” that employers value in candidates:

Resilience. Having the ability to be resilient in times of adversity is important. To quickly be able to change your perspective when adversity strikes, instead of being daunted by the challenges it brings, is something every employer would be interested in, so make sure it’s on top of your list.

Frugality. Given the economy is still recovering (some say still suffering) from the 2008/2009 GFC, the ability to do more with less is an incredibly powerful ability to have at your disposal. Not too many businesses can afford to not have employees that can make the most out of its resources.

Flexibility. When a candidate can demonstrate their ability to think on their feet when something unexpected comes along, it’s like striking gold. Having this skill is ideal if you’re looking to work for companies in highly unpredictable industries, although any employer can get value from this trait.

Empathic. A candidate who has the ability to truly understand the needs and point of view of others, are among a company’s greatest assets. These employees can give the company an insight into what consumers or customers may need, giving a significant edge to that employer.

Passionate. Successful companies are driven by individuals who can be immensely passionate about their work and who can on occasion, use their hearts rather than their minds. This means having people who will be able to do their job successfully by taking risks that pay off in the end.

Remember just saying you’re resilient or passionate or flexible simply ain’t going to cut the mustard, so to speak. To truly demonstrate possess any of these skills, you’ll need to use real world examples of where you’ve successfully employed these traits. Any clown can add words to a resume, but a standout candidate is the one that can show he or she uses these skills in their everyday working life.


Leigh Grigaliunas

Leigh is an owner and co-founder of School Hours Pty Ltd.Leigh's passion for helping others coupled with his desire to achieve a balance between raising children and earning a living, lead him to create School Hours Pty Ltd with his wife Yasmin.School Hours will be the place to go for Australian parents wanting to connect with progressive thinking, family friendly employers.

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