Communication skills are the key to effectively exchanging information – duh. So you can see why it is one of the key skills for CVs that graduate employers look for. The two-way process is essential in business, and graduate job hunters must be able to demonstrate good listening as well and the ability to speak out.
Effective communication skills are made up of a few different skills such as;
- presentation skills,
- being able to phrase important questions,
- not saying too much,
- and understanding your audience.
Tailoring what you say is particularly important for hunting down graduate jobs.
Communication skills on applications
Communication skills will be one of the most noticeable things on your applications and during interviews, so it’s important to get it right. Remembering the 3 P’s when having any form of communication with employers is our number one tip:
- Punctual: This will show that you are a serious candidate but also gives you enough time to draft and proofread an appropriate written response.
- Professional: Remember to always go for a more formal approach than casual, to avoid coming across as unprofessional.
- Polite: Manners go a long way, especially when contacting people you wish to work with or for.
Written communication skills – Any written communication should be well written, actively – instead of passively – and easy to understand. Definitely do not use any shorthand, while it may look cool af 2 txt your m8s lyk dis, recruiters will not be as interested in your abilities of shortening words and phrases to a few letters and numbers. Check, check and check again for typos, grammatical error and spelling mistakes.
Face-to-face communication skills – During interviews you should be confident (I know easier said than done), smile and maintain eye contact whilst speaking. Always think about who your audience is when speaking to a group of other candidates or presenting to the bosses, tailor your approach! It’s always good to show your interest and demonstrate your listening skills by asking relevant questions and giving honest responses. Also, try to avoid babbling on and on… not everyone likes the sound of your voice.
How do you show your communication skills on your CV?
Recruiters are not looking for a list of the skills on your CV. So avoid saying “I’m a good communicator”. Applications are not about claiming you have skills but showing you have them. Remember to use a real world example, good communication is often a factor in teamwork and problem solving, having multiple examples will boost your application too!
To highlight your skills, and highlight your skill with an example the simplest way is to use the STAR Method:
- Situation: context for the interviewer, describe the situation.
- Task: what did you aim to achieve?
- Action: explain what you did in order to complete what you set out to achieve.
- Result: make sure it’s a specific and clear event.
Developing your communication skills
If you feel like you’re lacking communication skills do not fear, there’s loads of stuff you can do that will boost your skills! From taking on bar work and dealing with customers, taking on a part-time job working in a call centre, or even doing group coursework. There are plenty of options for you to improve your communication skills, and you could even earn a little bit of money on the side!
Whether you’re ready to add communication skills to your CV or applications, or you’re still developing the skills, check out Magnet.me to connect with companies that are looking for someone like you!