The top ten skills graduate recruiters want

The top ten skills graduate recruiters want

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1. Commercial awareness (or business acumen)

This is about knowing how a business or industry works and what makes a company tick.  Showing that you have an understanding of what the organisation wants to achieve through its products and services, and how it competes in its marketplace.

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2. Communication

This covers verbal and written communication, and listening.  It's about being clear, concise and focused; being able to tailor your message for the audience and listening to the views of others.

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3. Teamwork

You'll need to prove that you're a team player but also have the ability to manage and delegate to others and take on responsibility.  It's about building positive working relationships that help everyone to achieve goals and business objectives.

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4. Negotiation and persuasion

This is about being able to set out what you want to achieve and how, but also being able to understand where the other person is coming from so that you can both get what you want or need and feel positive about it.

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5. Problem solving

You need to display an ability to take a logical and analytical approach to solving problems and resolving issues.  It's also good to show that you can approach problems from different angles.

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6. Leadership

You may not be a manager straight away, but graduates need to show potential to motivate teams and other colleagues that may work for them.  It's about assigning and delegating tasks well, setting deadlines and leading by good example.

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7. Organisation

This is about showing that you can prioritise, work efficiently and productively, and manage your time well.  It's also good to be able to show employers how you decide what is important to focus on and get done, and how you go about meeting deadlines.

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8. Perseverance and motivation

Employers want people to have a bit of get-up-and-go.  Working life presents many challenges and you need to show employers that you're the kind of person who will find a way through, even when the going gets tough... and stay cheerful-ish.

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9. Ability to work under pressure

This is about keeping calm in a crisis and not becoming too overwhelmed or stressed.

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10. Confidence

In the workplace you need to strike the balance of being confident in yourself but not arrogant, but also have confidence in your colleagues and the company you work for.

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