Skills Business Leaders Look for in Graduates

4 Minutes

Regardless of industry, there are certain common skills that every employer looks for when employing graduate talent. When you’re searching for a job, knowing some tricks of the trade can help set you apart from the competition.

Read on to understand the top skills that business leaders look for in graduates, to help boost your appeal to potential employers.


Time management

Both the volume and quality of your work is vital, as business leaders want to see you achieve quality outputs in quantity. Developing your time-management skills will help you figure out what’s important and ensure that you avoid spending valuable time on low-level tasks.

If you get to grips with deadlines, have a to-do list and are able to prioritise your time wisely, you’ll start showing excellent time-management skills that business leaders’ really value. Assess the amount of time you spend on tasks and review against vital KPIs to maximise your productivity.


Research skills


In order to keep up to date with industry standards and be a valuable asset to the company, you need to exhibit solid research skills. Luckily, higher education often provides you with a head start, as you learn to research material in order to write assignments and pass exams.

However, if you’d like to polish up on your research skills, there are various ways you can stay up to date with industry practices, such as signing up to newsletters, joining in on group discussions and attending conferences and events.

This will not only help to demonstrate your in-depth knowledge in your chosen industry, but also show the employer that you’re genuinely interested in that specific field.


Teamwork and people skills


Employees are the driving force of any business and everyone values a team player who’s eager to contribute and can collaborate with colleagues on various projects.

Show you have teamwork and people skills by demonstrating moments where you’ve worked collaboratively on a project. This could be for an assignment, or in any team-based hobbies or extra-curricular activities.


Negotiating skills


Negotiating is often a vital aspect to a business, so it’s extremely likely business leaders will want to see that you have strong negotiating skills.

Being able to negotiate can come in handy in numerous professional situations, such as partnering with new business. Alongside this, it can also help you out when it comes to discussing your salary and any pay rises in the future.

Negotiating often ties in with research. For example, if you were looking to negotiate a raise then you would need to research things like the average income for someone with your skill set and years of experience in that chosen field. You would then use your results to support your request to negotiate a pay rise.


Public speaking


If you can debate a subject in class, then you can convince a client to sign a new deal with you. This requires a great use of public speaking in which business leaders hold great value.

Public speaking is a useful skill to show your boss and colleagues you can communicate clearly and are capable of doing the task at hand.

To help build your communication skills, practice with a friend or family member, or participate in events that will encourage you to address a large crowd. Having confidence and strong communication skills will open up a wide range of business opportunities.


Do you have the skills that business leaders look for in graduates?


Acquiring these key skills will show business leaders that you’re capable of working in a professional environment and help you to become a valuable asset to the business.

Some of these skills are easily obtainable but others require practice. However, once mastered, they will open up a wide range of opportunities and provide you with long and successful career ahead.


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