Whether you’re new to manufacturing or a seasoned professional, your knowledge of how to run a piece of machinery or use specific measuring devices is only part of the equation for your on-the-job success. In addition to technical skills, possessing certain soft skills will not only make you a better employee, but they will also open up more opportunities for growth. Entry-level candidates through managers, here are five soft skills employers tell us they’re looking for in you:
Desire to learn. You become a more valuable employee if you don’t just punch in and punch out without a thought about what other people in your company are doing on a daily basis. Plus, isn’t it nice to explore and understand the big picture of what your company does? Even as a manager, you can broaden your skills by taking classes, getting involved in committees, or even joining industry-related groups.
Team player. Manufacturing is a team sport, for sure. Your willingness to help your fellow coworkers, be collaborative, and work as one unit to get the job done will tell your employer you are invested in your work and that of the company. And managers, you don’t work in a bubble. You need to be able to show you are willing to work with other departments for the greater good, or even dig your hands in with your team to help bring projects over the finish line.
Flexible. Overtime might be required to meet a deadline. You might be asked to move to a different area when your job duties are taken over by automation. You may be asked to fill in for a fellow manager who has taken a leave of absence. Whatever the case, if you are able to bend and shift with the needs of the company, you will be considered flexible (which is a good thing!).
Good listener. Manufacturing any product requires you to listen in order to get your job done right and on time. Managers, you not only have to work on keeping your employees happy (after all, happy employees are productive employees!), you are tasked with leading a group of people who work on the front lines. They have ideas, too, and if you don’t listen to them, you might miss a more efficient way to operate or understanding a different way to communicate with your employees.
Attention to detail. A person with strong attention to detail will make fewer mistakes, thereby improving productivity, producing a better product, and generally help maintain or improve the company’s reputation.
Wondering how to gain soft skills you seem to be missing? While some are inherent, most soft skills are developed over time and become a habit only after a conscious effort to improve. Practice, practice, practice!
Wondering how you can put your soft skills to use? That part’s easy. Just contact Leddy Group and we’ll connect you with a wide range of manufacturing opportunities!