Many people moan, "I don't have experience, so how am I supposed to find meaningful employment?" What counts as "experience" in the job world may surprise those looking for their first job. In honesty, people begin developing meaningful experiences in adolescence, long before their first job interview. They develop and refine their employable personalities through time-tested traits marking maturity and wisdom.
Each time a young person gains privilege afforded by successful experience, the "frail sapling" develops one more characteristic of the "sturdy tree." Intangible personal qualities become tangible when they are are proven time after time in real experience. A maturing individual substantiates important employment traits working at home, school, and in the neighborhood. Any youth who takes steps toward serving others or who demonstrates actions of positive independence is also taking giant strides towards job readiness.
True, education, specific job skills, and experience in the field are powerful tools people use to snag great jobs. However, these things usually come with age. Most of us must begin our employment history without these key components.
One must remember a youth seeking initial, basic employment is expected to be more than an nondescript mold of flesh that holds no attraction for potential employers. A young adult should learn how to communicate important personality traits he or she is expected to have developed. Some shy, inexperienced job seekers possess these attributes in abundance, but never learn to "advertise" themselves attractively in resumes and interviews.
I don't own a company nor do I conduct job interviews, yet I do know specific personality traits that help land employment for inexperienced job seekers. Several steps assure that prospective employers may be impressed by these virtues.
(1) Job seekers should choose and tailor honest, pertinent, concise descriptions of their character traits. They should be aware that many managers reside in an older generation that does judge on spelling, grammar, and correctness.
(2) Most importantly, they must prove each personality trait by offering numerous examples of fruitful past actions in which they have demonstrated each trait. To do this, they can draw upon temporary jobs, paid tasks, group activities, extracurricular school participation, charitable work, and even manual chores.
(3) Finally, they must commit to communicating all of this information in writing and in verbal exchange. A good resume can gain an interview. Naturally, for some, the reality of putting forth these skills during an interview is frightening. They must remember managers understand that jitters are inevitable; it's the imperfect though genuine attempt that scores most.
Functionality is key here because merely declaring traits without adequate proof is simply "hot air." In essence, the job seeker is "selling" his "work personality" to gain employment. How else can a potential employer judge the risk he takes on a person without vast knowledge, specific job skills, and adequate experience?
By all means, the young job seeker must not show an overbearing, demanding personality. But, too often prospective employees rush through their opportunity to communicate their desire for the job. Instead, they assume something unspoken or unwritten will magically attract the manager and insure them an edge over competition. This won't happen. Job seekers must commit to displaying their specially targeted "ad campaign in a manner that is both attractive and convincingly reliable.
Natural eye contact, correct body language, appropriate dress, and genuine desire for employment help. It is up to the job seeker to prove his great worth to the company. This requires forethought and a little research into what the company is specifically seeking. All employers seek benefits; none want to waste time on those who merely occupy a position. A job seeker may have the opportunity to visit the perspective job site before being considered for employment. There, he may casually inquire about important considerations of the specific employer. Of course, then he must deliver the functional proof that he possesses the qualities to accomplish these things.
Some Personality Traits That Help People Gain Employment
1. High Energy
The ability to consistently produce and stand the grind of work is very important. A sluggish, indifferent employee doesn't project a successful future for the company. On the other hand, someone with high energy focused on production strengthens the firm. This person is an asset to others at work and a dynamo who models maximum effort. High energy and enthusiasm go hand in hand. Both qualities require initiative and dependable action.
"Good luck is the willing handmaid of an upright and energetic character, and conscientious observance of duty." -James Russell Lowell
An egotist can be a malignancy at the work site. They appear phony, and these self-centered individuals perform miserably in essential group situations. Yet, a "whiner" or "doubter" becomes a downer to most everyone. "I can't" generates little or no understanding from administrators who have already faced and overcome daunting odds themselves. The proper balance for an employee is achieved with self-confidence. Even if an employee fails a task, that worker must confidently correct the predicament and, with increased determination, tackle the challenge again.
“Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit." -E.E. Cummings
3. Problem-solving Ability
Naturally, the ability to solve problems increases with experience. Still, most inexperienced people who can think on "a higher level" with brains that works well while they are "on their feet" typically advance on the promotion ladder. Others respect their ability to use logic and foresight. These leaders, though not necessarily brainiacs, are resourceful and practical. They demonstrate natural knacks for "getting jobs done."
“If I had an hour to solve a problem I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” -Albert Einstein
Persistence refers to the ability to remain on course despite unavoidable obstacles. Society has historically respected those with perseverance despite unfavorable odds. This requires that the individual not be obstinate (inflexible, rash, and pig-headed), but rather be purposely patient and willing to accept small gains on the path to success.
“Character consists of what you do on the third and fourth tries.” -James A. Michener
5. Intellectual Curiosity
The opposite of one who is intellectually curious is a person who rusts, stagnating instead of changing. The intellectual constipation of such a dolt results in laziness and false confidence. Competent workers understand lifelong learning is a vital commitment to increased production. Some jobs may require more training and schooling than others; however, all jobs require constant acquisition of new knowledge and the ability to adjust. A worker who is curious demonstrates willingness to learn and a special passion for his work.
“Around here, however, we don't look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we're curious...and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” -The Walt Disney Company
This is a trait many today claim is seldom seen, yet this rare quality is extremely prized by all. Integrity is a quality that demands firm adherence to a code of morality. The word integrity stems from the Latin adjective integer meaning "whole or complete." It has to do with consistency and honesty, but the word implies more. Since practicing total integrity is a personal choice, it is an uncompromising and predictably consistent commitment to honor moral, ethical, spiritual and artistic values and principles. Those with integrity do "the right thing" even when the boss is away. No one has to check their work or worry about them loafing or acting with hypocrisy.
“Real integrity is doing the right thing, knowing that nobody’s going to know whether you did it or not.” -Oprah Winfrey
A worker must "get along" with co-workers. That means the employee must be good-natured, friendly, and agreeable in disposition. Amiability seems to emanate naturally from those who sport a natural smile and a heartfelt good word. An amiable person brightens the toughest work days, and is usually happy even the first thing in the morning. These cordial folk have a personality free of meddlesome bother. Some claim to dream of cherries denotes a person will gain popularity by amiability and unselfishness. Perhaps this interpretation stems from the fact amiable people view life as the proverbial "bowl of cherries."
"Amiability lessons the misgivings of being human and the problems of being fallible." -Byron Pulsifer
One relatively simple trait to possess is punctuality or promptness in arriving at an appointed time. There are those who amazingly cannot keep engagements or deadlines with regularity. These workers show up late, so they lack dependability. And, of course, some people develop a habit of calling off work for any reason. This shows a lack of consideration for the company and for other employees since someone else is usually expected to take up the slack created by the "slacker." Good workers are on time in their proper places.
"Promptness is the soul of business." -Lord Chesterfield
Rigidity in the workplace might best be defined by Congressmen who insist on partisanship. Such incompliant individuals clog the system and slow the capacity of a business. As Jimmy Breslin said, "They have as much give as a tree trunk." In the case of Congress, they can even shut down the federal government with their predisposition to be unmoved in their vaulted, political beliefs. Flexible workers do not compromise principles, but they do compromise old, outdated methods and remain open to commit fully to better solutions. They are the "grease" that keeps the work machine moving.
"Thus, flexibility, as displayed by water, is a sign of life. Rigidity, its opposite, is an indicator of death." -Anthony Lawlor
My generation wonders what has happened to common sensibility. I guess every generation judges the thought processes of younger people to be lacking, but a minimum amount of simple practicality and rationality should guide good decision making at any age. In a job, employees are expected to remain alert and aware with their practical perceptions and guiding emotions. They say Einstein lacked a certain degree of common sense. Of course, with his uniquely intelligent brain maybe his head lacked room for such elementary knowledge. Besides, I am pretty sure Einstein did most of his work alone.
“People always call it luck when you’ve acted more sensibly than they have." -Anne Tyler
11. Communication Skills
No work can be accomplished without communication. Silence met with silence produces a void free of understanding. A good employee learns to use superior communication skills as a powerful tools to achieve prosperity and happiness. Gaining competence with these skills and eventually achieving the command of language permits membership into much sought after employment confederacies and associations. Those who refuse to improve their communication skills limit their own speaking and writing prowess. To ignore the impact of language creates a deficiency easily noticed by others.For example, to remain a medical doctor with a poor bedside manner detracts from the personal, friendly image demanded by the public.
“Much unhappiness has come into the world because of bewilderment and things left unsaid.” -Fyodor Dostoyevsky
12. Technological Competency
Smack dab in the middle of the computer age, prospective employees are at a distinct disadvantage if they have no technological skills. Lost in an electronic age, the computer illiterate ignore the very advancements provided by science that guarantee "a leg up." It is impossible to calculate the impact of technology and the changes it has generated in the past twenty years. One can be so "anti-geek" that he dismisses reality and waits for old ways to regenerate. Yet, that person will be waiting and waiting and waiting on an opportunity to secure a decent job. Computer savvy and at least minimally educated in future technological trends equates to having two modern advantages over job competitors.
"First we thought the PC was a calculator. Then we found out how to turn numbers into letters with ASCII — and we thought it was a typewriter. Then we discovered graphics, and we thought it was a television. With the World Wide Web, we've realized it's a brochure.” -Douglas Adams