Ultimately, the goal of education is for each student to become a productive member of society which includes entering the workforce. Employers have asked what schools are doing to prepare students with more than academic and technical skills. To be career ready means students will leave high school possessing the soft skills necessary to be successful in the workplace. Below are qualities employers want in any employee. How are we, as schools, being intentional about creating a culture that integrates the following characteristics into the learning experience?
Adaptability – Maintaining effectiveness when experiencing major changes in work tasks or the work environment; adjusting effectively to work within new work structures, processes, requirements, or cultures. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Communication – Clearly conveying information and ideas through a variety of media to individuals or groups in a manner that engages the audience and helps them understand and retain the message. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Customer Service - The degree of assistance and courtesy granted those who patronize a business. Entrepreneur.com
Decision Making – Identifying and understanding issues, problems, and opportunities; comparing data from different sources to draw conclusions; using effective approaches for choosing a course of action or developing appropriate solutions; taking action that is consistent with available facts, constraints, and probable consequences. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Dependability – meets professional expectations of performing job-related tasks, finishing assigned projects, meeting deadlines and appointments. Actively demonstrates commitment by maintaining a consistent and predictable work schedule. csu.edu/humanresources
Drug Free - employees are prohibited from engaging in the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of a controlled substance. Uslegal.com
Hygiene and Appearance - Proper grooming and professional appearance are important to gain not just positive impression but also respect in the workplace. Futureofworking.com Professional Appearance and Grooming for the Workplace
Innovation – Generating innovative solutions in work situations; trying different and novel ways to deal with work problems and opportunities. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Interpersonal Skills - The set of abilities enabling a person to interact positively and work effectively with others. These skills include the areas of communication, listening, delegation of tasks and leadership. businessdictionary.com
Loyalty to Company – is the extent to which the personnel are faithful to the organization, having feelings of bonding, inclusion, care, responsibility and devotion towards it. MBAbrief.com
Managing Conflict – Dealing effectively with others in an antagonistic situation; using appropriate inter-personal styles and methods to reduce tension or conflict between two or more people. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Managing Work (including Time Management) – Effectively managing one’s time and resources to ensure that work is completed efficiently. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Professional Attitude - means that you have the ability to effectively manage your time, display leadership, act in an ethical manner, show tenacity and determination, act and think creatively, appreciate diversity, focus on customer satisfaction, manage conflicts effectively and display emotional intelligence. Displaying a Professional Attitude; Ashley Miller, Demand Media.
Safety Awareness – Identifying and correcting conditions that affect employee safety; upholding safety standards. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Social Media - Web-based tools and technologies used to share information and turn communication into interactive dialogues with internal or external audiences. SHRM, Social Media in the Workplace.
Teamwork/Collaboration - The process of working collaboratively with a group of people in order to achieve a goal. businessdictionary.com
Technical/Professional Knowledge and Skills – Having achieved a satisfactory level of technical and professional skill or knowledge in position-related areas; keeping up with current developments and trends in areas of expertise. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary
Valuing Diversity – Appreciating and leveraging the capabilities, insights, and ideas of all individuals; working effectively with individuals of diverse style, ability, and motivation. Harvard University, Competency Dictionary