January 11, 2018

The top 6 skills to have to be able to succeed at the job and to get hired

You finally landed the internship of your dreams, the job you have been waiting to hear from, or joined the team that's going to get your career started. But what happens when you lack on some of the everyday tools you would need? How do you know these are the skills you should know before you even start the job? Today I'll be sharing 6 tools you should master to be able to succeed in the office.

You should also Read: 6 Helpful Tips To Keep a Job

These are skills I have learned throughout school and my professional career, but through every job, I have learned to improve them because they are part of my daily work.

The Top 6 Skills To Have To Be Able To Succeed At The Job. (Click to tweet)

Microsoft Excel- Yes, the first one is obvious because in this day and age everyone knows how to use excel (at least the basics of it), which is why everyone has excel as a skill on their resume. But hear me out, it's not only the basic of excel that you should know and be an expert by now. No, I'm talking about vlookup, pivot tables, trimming, text to columns, graphs (of course) micros and macros. 

WHY: Excel is one of the most used systems after Microsoft Word and Email. Also depending on the job you will use Excel at least 60% of the time, BUT most likely way more. This is why it's important to be able to accelerate your knowledge of the system before you even start your job.
TIP: During your downtime (especially during your first weeks on the job) learn more about the tools your company/team uses on a regular basis and practice them. Most companies have free courses to help you accelerate your education with programs like Excel. It's great to take advantage of these courses because they are FREE and very useful. 

Microsoft PowerPoint- Another obvious one, but I'm here to state facts. By now this tool is one that you should have in the bag, as powerpoint presentations are all you do during your college career - no matter what was your major or concentration. Every person should be able to do a presentation using PowerPoint with their eyes closed, but it's important to always go back and refresh your memory with the program.

WHY: Depending on your career or position some jobs to expect you to use powerpoint more than you expect and you want to be prepared.

TIP: Practice creating a presentation that includes charts and importing information from another document, as well as the different slides templates.

6 skills to have to get hired for the job you want

Microsoft Access- I would be lying if I say I currently use Access a lot, but that does not mean I haven't had to use it during my previous jobs to run a project, or that it comes as a plus when my managers know I'm able to use the basics of the program. By knowing how to use the program already I save time on trying to learn it and I'm able to just get the job done.

WHY: It's an extra skill and knowledge to have. If you master this skill you will be able to take on tasks or projects that require the use of Microsoft Access and it will be the ones your coworkers can't.

Adobe (pdf creator)- Besides converting a word doc into a pdf file how much do you know about Adobe? Don't be embarrassed if you don't know much about Adobe, it's honestly an easy tool to learn and use but nonetheless an important one to know.

WHY: Did you know you could watermark your documents using pdf creator? You can also edit a pdf document, as well as add typeable fields to your document and much more.
Meeting Minutes- If I'm being honest I wish I had mastered taking meeting minutes a longgg time ago. Like really long ago. The first time I heard of "Meeting Minutes" was probably my freshman or sophomore year of college in one of my business classes, and I never really heard the term again until I joined my current team.

  • Google defines Meeting Minutes as "Minutes, also known as protocols or, informally, notes, is the instant written record of a meeting or hearing. They typically describe the events of the meeting and may include a list of attendees, a statement of the issues considered by the participants, and related responses or decisions for the issues."
WHY: Every company, every job, have meetings, whether it's a staff meeting to a client meeting. Meeting minutes are used as physical/ digital evidence of what happened at the meeting. They are used to refer back to it, as records and agenda. They are notes on steroids

I have learned that the best way to take meeting munites, as well as being able to take effective meeting minutes it all depends on a few things;
  1.  Figure out how they have been previously done and mirror that the best way possible. This is possible if this is a new task you're taking on from someone else. If this is a brand new meeting that is being created than your best bet is to ask questions. Ask; what to include on the agenda? What type of template to use? and so on.
  2. Figure out the goal of the meeting; meaning are the meeting minutes being done to have evidence of what was discussed during the meeting word by world or more of a summary that fits the purpose.
  3. Understand the level of confidential of the meeting. 
TIP #1: For a non-confidential meeting, you can use the app "HDAudioRecorder" which can be used with your phone locked. If you go with this app I recommend buying the Audio File extension for $1.99 which would allow you to record without it being stopped. Without this extension, the app will only record up to 3 minutes. 
TIP #2: Write everything down that is talked about during the meeting (or as much as you can) even if you won't include it all. Is better to have more information to go from then missing information.

TIP #3: To do's, assigned jobs, or next steps are one of the most important parts of taking the minutes, make sure you write all of this down. As well as numbers, dates, or estimated time.

Research- I have previously mentioned the importance of doing your research. Not just the research on a certain topic or project but research overall. This is crucial during your career. You want to make sure you have looked everywhere and have thought of different options and ways to look before asking for help or admitting you can't get XYZ done.

If you know exactly what you're looking for, you'll know where to look and how to look for it. (Click to tweet)

WHY: The first thing you will be asked when you go back to your manager will be; Did you look here? Did you try searching it like this? Did look under this? Did you ask ____ about it? Did you think of this? No manager want's to do the search for you- that's why you're under them, brutal truth. So it's important to know how to learn to search for what you need. You can master this skill by circling your keywords from your notes as well as going back to the ask.
ALWAYS GO BACK TO THE ASK. If you know exactly what you're looking for, you'll know where to look and how to look for it.

Research every possible option you can think of, as well as double checking it right before sending that "I give up" email. This is, in fact, the moment you will find your answer. Try moving words around as well as reaching out to your co-workers after trying a few different options.

Fact, the day your current job stops teaching you new skills, this is the day you should start looking for a change. You have outgrown the job, the position, and you're no longer being challenged. (Click to tweet)

It is impossible to know everything you'll need for a particular job or be great at it from the beginning, and yes, in fact, your skills are developed throughout your job experiences. But in order to stand out and succeed there are certain skills you should know, these ones are just a few of them.

In fact, the day your current job stops teaching you new skills, this is the day you should start looking for a change. You have outgrown the job, the position, and you're no longer being challenged. The day we stop being challenged, is the day we stop learning.

The day we stop being challenged, is the day we stop learning. (Click to tweet)

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6 skills to have to get hired for the job you want

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