Four Soft Skills New Graduates Should Bring To Work

One 2013 survey reported that 60 percent of employers felt that new graduates lacked the soft skills to communicate effectively in the workplace. While your post-secondary qualifications will do wonders for your career, polished soft skills will boost your prospects even more. That’s why The we have put together a list of soft skill tactics to help you through the early days of your career.

1) Remove yourself from office politics

College may have been a great time for gossip and drama. But it was all forgotten by the end of the semester, right? Perhaps. But the same cannot be said for many workplaces. There are few things more toxic to a fledgling career than being perceived as a cause of drama. Office politics are the dubious luxury of employees with tenure. So, do your career a favour and avoid them like the plague.

2) Stay humble

To a certain extent, college was one long competition where you were given a score based on your effort. In fact, you may have leveraged that score (your GPA) to land a job. However, upon entering the workplace, you cease to be a solo competitor. Instead, you join a team of personalities that probably don’t want to be shown up by the new hire. So do your job and do it well. But also do it with class and humility.

3) Pace yourself

Emotional and physical exhaustion are real dangers for ambitious new graduates. You may think that relentlessly exceeding expectations and competing against yourself will impress your new bosses. However, few employers are impressed by staff members whose performance flags significantly or becomes erratic due to burnout. Say ‘no’ to overtime once in a while. Have boundaries. Look after yourself. A steady, sustainable performance in your first year will do more for your career than the boom/bust inconsistencies of an unbalanced overachiever.

4) Mind your manners

Good manners cost nothing. Yet they pay such rich dividends that it is surprising more new graduates do not invest in them. College may have been a culture that encourage you to speak boldly, to challenge the ideas of your peers, to be the voice of a new generation! However, there is a good chance your new coworkers do not want you to do any of these things (at least not all the time). A new graduate in the workplace who listens, asks questions, respects authority, and seeks to be polite and helpful is a welcome addition to any group.

Enjoy the new challenge

New grads are hired because they breathe fresh life into companies. But the workplace often requires a more balanced approach than college. When you get a handle on this change of pace, your soft skills will soon be as impressive as your qualifications. So, enjoy the new challenge and embrace the career you have trained for.