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Job Smarts

If you’ve already found your first job and worked after school, weekends, and summers, you know how exciting it is to earn a paycheck—even a small one.

Taking pride in your work and your ability to earn is an employability skill—one of a dozen or so qualities that will make you stand out as a good worker. No matter what the career or job, it’s not enough just to show up: Employers want people with “soft” skills, such as a customer service mentality, a desire to do things right the first time, teamwork, and a willingness to learn.

Each year, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) surveys employers across all industries every year and asks them what skills college graduates need to be successful. Here are the top 10 attributes employers want to see on your resume—and on the job:

  1. Ability to work in a team
  2. Problem-solving skills
  3. Communication skills (written)
  4. Strong work ethic
  5. Communication skills (verbal)
  6. Leadership
  7. Initiative
  8. Analytical/quantitative skills
  9. Flexibility/adaptability
  10. Detail-oriented

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