When it comes to finding the right candidate for a position, it’s no longer exclusively about experience and results. Employers are increasingly looking for evidence of ability to empathize, motivate, and influence. Many job-seekers neglect this key area in their interview preparation. We have three places employers should see your soft skills.
Before you arrive. Demonstrating your soft skills starts well before your interview. Does your conversation scheduling the appointment show you are engaging on the phone? How is your email etiquette? You are giving them signals about what kind of professional you are from your first contact.
In your interview. Do your responses to questions only deal with skills and metrics or do they include the human dynamic? Do your examples show how you are able to collaborate with others to accomplish goals? How do you speak of external stakeholders? Is the Board of Trustees a key ally or a royal pain? Your responses should also demonstrate that you are continually growing in your leadership and interpersonal skills.
From your references. Your references bring your experience to life for your potential employer. That should include evidence of your soft skills. The warmth, respect, and candor your references use in describing you speaks volumes about your interpersonal skills. The information your references provide should show that you are a valued member of a team.