What is the most critical skill to one’s CAREER success – yet also the most elusive? Time management? Strategic thinking? Discipline? Decision making?
No. While these are important, they pale in comparison to communication skills, BOTH personal and professional: Attentive listening, asking relevant questions, showing empathy, and knowing how to handle difficult communications are the most critical to career success.
They are vital to building healthy relationships, exchanging ideas, sharing feelings, gaining buy-in, setting clear expectations, and working collaboratively. The lack of these skills is at the root of most conflicts, employee performance issues, failed projects, and lost opportunities…JOBS????
Thursday, February 25th… Turning Opportunities into INTERVIEWS
You can be a subject matter expert, but if you can’t communicate your ideas, your ideas are of little value. You can have a great value proposition, branding, for the future, but if you can’t get people to buy into it, your vision doesn’t matter. You can be a masterful manager, but if you can’t reassure or empathize with your clients, they will seek help elsewhere.
You might have a skill set/experience to sell, but if you can’t articulate a compelling value proposition, you won’t find many takers. Your ability to communicate determines your success at work or home.
How do you rate your current communication’s skills? And, more importantly, how do you improve them to enhance job search or career transition SUCCESS?
Consider The Basics…
On a scale of passive ==> to assertive ==> to aggressive, let’s take a look at how we could communicate direct to contacts in and surrounding a targeted organization…
Email…safe, but too easy to be deleted before a relationship is established. Requires follow-up.
LETTER of introduction… also safe, but read more often. Paves the way for a first call to a referral… creates dialog. Requires phone follow-up.
Phone call…direct… often a cold call… requires risk. Establishes contact, interaction and, worst case, VISIBILITY.
There’s only two reasons to be on the phone during active job search…
- Reconnecting with valid contacts, seeking their advice and information, sharing your communication strategy, and seeking referral activity…
- Securing actual interviews
Cover NOTE and resume… Rather than mindlessly applying to countless jobs, playing the numbers game; develop your networking style to motivate a person to request your resume. When requested, resume gets read more often. Establishes relationship. Requires follow-through. Face2face office visit!