Tag Archives: job skills

Thrilling Finish Predicted in Job Search Tournament Bracket

StreetballThe competition to land a new job or score a promotion is fierce. As a job seeker, you have to bring your A-game or you’ll find yourself on the bench. Before the NCAA college basketball tournament tips off later this month, we assembled an all-star line-up of job skills and qualities sought by employers and pitted them head to head in a quest to see which could outlast the competition and emerge as champion.

The Tournament Begins

In our hypothetical scenario, the field began with nearly 30 highly sought attributes chosen from a strong field of abilities and characteristics coveted by employers. We seeded the top 16 according to rankings accumulated from leading hiring managers. It’s important to note that there were many strong contenders who narrowly missed the field of 16, many of which on any given day are strong enough to help score a job. Among them were ambition, independent thinking, strong time management skills, good listener, goal focused, and a proactive mindset.

The Super 16 Battle it Out

As the competition heated up and the field narrowed to the Super 16, our job search tournament began to take shape with desirable skills occupying one side of the bracket and highly sought personal traits dominating the opposite side. A couple of surprise underdogs made the field due to emerging trends in the hiring mindset. Empathy made a strong showing in the bracket, underscoring a desire by many companies to employ a mindful, conscientious workforce. Flexibility also made a solid run for the title, demonstrating a need for employees who can adapt and evolve in a changing work environment. In what many observers viewed as a stunning upset, Writing Skills narrowly edged Computer Skills to advance in the tournament. Pundits suggest that in today’s job market, computer skills are readily expected from an applicant, thus giving the edge to Writing Skills.

The Road to the Favored Four

The field continued to thin as the tournament intensified. Powerful front runners emerged as many contests went down to the final buzzer. In a key match-up, Flexibility continued its strong push to go deep in the field by constantly adapting to changing conditions. However, the “can-do” spirit of Positive Attitude prevailed, refusing to be denied their rightful spot in the Awesome 8. Two favorites of hiring managers, Organization and Dependability both punched their tickets to the next round. However, when the dust settled, only the Favored Four remained to contend for the title of Most Desirable Trait. Set to contend on the “skills” side of the bracket, number one seed Team Player goes up against Problem Solving. The winner will square off against the winner on “attributes” side of the bracket, which pits number one seed Leadership Potential against Work Ethic. The outcome is far from set in stone, as any one of the four could be enough to tip the scale and score the job. Astute observers point out that the likely winner will be the one who can maximize its strengths, as well as adopt the qualities of the other contenders to present a multi-faceted approach.

What do you think? Check out our bracket (click to enlarge) and let us know how you’d fill out the remainder of our Favored Four. Are there early round match-ups you think should have turned out differently? What other skills or traits that should have appeared in the bracket? Tell us in the comments section!

Job Search Bracket

Broke? Improve Your Skills on the Cheap.

If you’re looking for a job, the competition can be tough. So, getting ahead could mean strengthening your job skills, and maybe even adding some new ones. Taking courses at your local college or vocational center is a great way to improve your skills set and your career, but it’s not always feasible with busy schedules and tight finances. If you need to brush up on a particular subject or simply want to expand your horizon and improve your mind, check out your local library. Borrowing books is a cost-effective way to build your résumé (or your brain) without draining your time or your pocket book.

Your library is a great – and free – resource you can use to extend your knowledge. And, you can learn at your own pace and schedule. At the library, you’ll find books on subjects ranging from computer programs to leadership advice. So, if you’ve ever been interested in graphic design, pick up some books on Adobe Photoshop. If you want to start your own business, read up on becoming an entrepreneur. If you’ve entertained a far-away dream of becoming a chef, realize that your dream could become a reality if you work toward it. Start by borrowing cookbooks like Julia Childs’ Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

If you’re like some people,  apart from the odd research paper in high school, you haven’t stepped foot in a library since grade school. But, if you’re looking to enhance your job skills, want to accomplish a life long dream, or just need a new hobby, now’s a great time to head to your local library. From gardening, to mechanics, from film making to interior design, your library has books about it all, often including free internet access. So, while you’re there, you can search the web for information and jobs.

Can’t handle the quiet, studious atmosphere of a library? You can schedule books for pickup online at most metro libraries to make borrowing books hassle free. So, head to your local library or visit it online to discover the endless possibilities a book can offer you.