16 Mar Just Graduated? Check Out the Skills That Will Get You Ahead

Learning provides a comprehensive view of possibilities available to individuals. It avails new offers especially to those wise enough to grab them as soon as they appear. Most colleges and universities offer extracurricular activities like sports, mentorship programs that provide actual life skills and placement programs that offer internships to ensure that you are prepared to perform on the global stage.

After successfully completing a graduate course, you will most likely enter the world of job hunting, an activity that is equally competitive and exhausting if you don’t have the right skills to land a job soon. Studies to show a sample of desirable skills that employers look for have been conducted by some organizations, like the National Association of Colleges and Employers. The studies aim to highlight some of the skills that graduates need in order to attract an employer. Findings can be summarized as a few guiding principles that will help students and graduates to become better future employees and land their dream jobs!!

With globalization and mobility being the key factors in many Human Resource succession plans, it is important that you ‘skill up’ to ensure that you are ahead of the game when it comes to employability! Here are a few traits that will give you the competitive edge you truly need.

Team Leadership Skills


Being a team player, as well as being a team leader, comes on top of the list most desirable skills of potential employees. Most companies employ people from varying backgrounds, a range of personalities and different capabilities. The ability to work together and achieve a set goal within such a setting proves to be a winning quality among many potential employers. If you have experience working on a successful project that involved teamwork, you increase your chances of being seen as a team player. Most team players are more often capable to interact well with others across different platforms, giving them higher chances of working on global projects and with diverse teams. They exude greater interpersonal qualities and are more likely to be accepting of other cultures and backgrounds and appreciative of different ideas.

Intrapreneurial Qualities

Employers will seek individuals who can prove that they are willing to think ‘outside the box’ and come up with new and innovative ways to go about their daily tasks. The ability to add value to the business through novel ideas, concept or products from within the firm is an essential quality demanded by many employers today, more popularly known as ‘intrapreneurship’.

Decision Making & Problem Solving


Rational decision making and problem solving abilities are other highly required skills of a new hire. Most employers want workers who will bring in new ideas, innovations and problem solving skills that are applicable on both a local and global scale. This skill gives confidence to any employer that a worker is able to work well under minimal supervision. Paired with bilingual communication skills, a graduate will increase their chances of landing a job and be given more responsibilities such as overseeing a foreign branch or project where communication and intuition is key. Most companies look to diversify their core business and having a rational employee with superior problem solving skills will prove to be an asset that can be trusted with more responsibilities.

Work Ethics – Organizational Skills

Strong organizational skills and understanding and appreciation of work ethics are skills that are most sought after by 68.9% of employers, as estimated by a research. A graduate that took more units while completing their education and managed to score highly, or was involved in social work and extracurricular activities, demonstrates advanced managerial and organizational skills. This also shows their appreciation for ethical standards. This will go a long way as it shows that as an employee, a graduate is able to multitask, adapt quickly to multicultural environments and be more open to learning additional skills. Such a graduate is also more likely to flourish in a global platform where intercultural business skills, ideas and concepts are needed.

Taking Initiative & Flexibility


Taking the initiative to fulfill a role without being prompted is a trait that proves the employee’s dedication and motivation to put their best foot forward. Taking the initiative often accompanies being a good team leader and team player. It shows that you have the best interests of the company at heart and do not mind going an extra mile to see the company goal fulfilled.  One example of how this is demonstrated is by having learned a second language or developed cultural competencies to enhance your capabilities.

IQ vs EQ

Your IQ (Intelligence Quotient) is what may have secured you the interview, but your EQ (Emotional Quotient) is what will keep you there and ensure that you succeed. It is vitally important that you are aware of those around you, the reasons why they act the way they do, and the most appropriate ways to react and behave with your associates. You will need to be ‘aware’ of how to guide your thinking and behavior to take yourself to the next level. This may be different based on various business cultures.



It is advisable to not only absorb the skills that you have learnt during your education, but to also be globally aware in pursuit of securing your dream job. Promotion of ‘life skills’ and a general understanding of business culture on a global scale will show that you are a well-rounded and confident communicator who is passionate, globally astute and ready to embrace new challenges.

As you embark on the next phase of your personal quest, whether it is locally or globally, ensure that you promote all of the wonderful qualities that you have acquired along the way, and be open to learning new ones as you go!

Learn the skills to help you nail that interview and get your dream job. Start now!

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