You may have noticed that a job offer or promotion doesn’t always go to the candidate with the most experience or best training. Instead, employers often hire and promote the candidate who seems most willing and able to learn the new role.
You might be asking yourself why a manager would ever pass up on a candidate with greater experience or more up-to-date skills. The reason is simple, really. While work history and capabilities are important, they’re no match for a willing attitude. In any new position there will always be new things for the employee to learn. That’s why the candidate who’s most trainable is often the preferred choice.
Becoming more trainable will not only make it easier to learn a new job, it will also boost your career by demonstrating to employers that you’re ready for any challenge. If you’re not sure how teachable you are, review the traits below and find out. If you fall short, don’t worry – once you know where you’re lacking, you can work on making improvements.
1. Enthusiasm – Eagerness to learn is a quality employers value highly in job candidates as well as internal recruits. A go-getter attitude makes learning any job easier, and enthusiasm increases a hiring manager’s confidence in potential employees’ abilities.
If your outlook toward work tends to be more ho-hum than vroom vroom, you can kick up your career a notch by displaying enthusiasm during interviews or at your current job.
Remember, it’s no fun to train someone who doesn’t want to learn. That’s why when someone comes off disinterested, it’s no wonder employers are skittish about offering a position. So, slap a smile on your face and show some drive by demonstrating excitement about your work.
2. Humility – It’s impossible to learn new things if you don’t think those around you have anything to teach you. Author C.S. Lewis once said, “A proud man is always looking down on things and people; and, of course, as long as you’re looking down, you can’t see something that’s above you.”
In order to be trainable, you have to come to new situations with an acceptance that you don’t know everything. Being humble isn’t the same thing as putting yourself down or having low self esteem. It’s important to feel good about yourself and to display confidence, but that doesn’t mean stepping on other people or refusing to listen to their instructions.
You can show your willingness to learn by valuing the opinions of others and asking for advice from time to time. When employers see that you respect the knowledge of those around you, they’ll be more inclined to hire and promote you.
3. Commitment – Learning new things isn’t always fun. Sometimes, training can be frustrating or boring. But, dedication is what enables you to overcome hurdles and succeed in a new role.
Do you stick it out even when times get tough? Hiring managers know that there’s a learning curve associated with any new position. That’s why they want to hire and promote individuals who are willing to stay the course.
You can increase your level of professional dedication by always following through on your commitments, turning projects in on time and keeping your word. Employers will be convinced of your perseverance when you can show a track record of dependability.
Do you want to be an in-demand employee? If so, focus on becoming more trainable by demonstrating enthusiasm, humility and commitment. Your efforts will be rewarded with interest and respect from employers.