Top 5 Leadership Skills That Employers Will Look For In 2018

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The New Year is here with us and employers are out looking for people who can hold leadership roles in their companies. Being a leader require soft skills that can help you communicate effectively with your team and clients. Your clients and team members always come first whether one is a project leader or an office manager.

In order to qualify for leadership roles this year, you should have the following skills:

  • Negotiation Skills

Negotiation is a vital skill that every great leader should possess. Leaders should be firm, fair and practical in their negotiations. This goes a long way from overseeing a large deal to settling differences.

Yes, leaders can be very convincing since they know how to get what they want. They know how to lead things to their desirable outcome by building a sense of trust with people and tapping the desires of others. Here are some effective tips that will help you improve your negotiation skills:

  • Avoid putting anything in writing until the negotiation process is over;
  • Embrace silence to help reinforce your points and get the other party thinking;
  • Make eye contact when trading something or offering a solution to show confidence;
  • Avoid using a weak voice when providing a solution;
  • Don’t allow the other party to know the difficulties or constraints you may be undergoing;
  • Know the other person’s timeline and use time to your advantage;
  • Look for other alternative solutions that may benefit the other party;
  • Don’t allow the other party to distract you; and
  • Always ensure you know what the other party is seeking.

  • Relationship Building

Employers are out looking for people who can easily build relationships and expand the company’s network. Do you know that relationship building can build or destroy a leader? Yes, relationship building is about authenticity and connecting with other people in a genuine way that creates a sense of community and a familiar feeling.

A good leader should always strive to foresee healthy relationships among the community and the team members. Great leaders actively contribute towards building one-on-one associations and they highly value relationships.

Relationship building could be more purposeful and involve team-building efforts like events and retreats, and out-of-work activities. Or, it could be as remembering certain personal details about people, and regularly inquiring about those things.

  • Communication

Communication is an essential skill for every great leader who wants to convey information or share their ideas effectively. Hence, a leader should possess great communication skills to make other people understand exactly what they are saying. While communication requires leaders to express themselves effectively, they should also learn to have great listening skills. Yes, listening is also part of communication.

Being a good listener is way more important than talking. Why? Because it helps you understand what the other party feels and it also helps you understand their needs. Remember, you can only impress someone if you can tell them how they can meet their needs and overcome their problems. You need to offer them a great solution to their problem. And you can only do that if you are ready to listen to what they have to say.

A good communicator also understands that expressing themselves clearly comes in handy and that they shouldn’t do it with murkiness or confusion.

Communication is the most fundamental skill for leaders when it comes to leading a team or an individual. It is equally important when it comes to workplace success.

  • Flexibility

It is important to take note that last-minute changes and mishaps often occur at work. Leaders need to embrace flexibility in order to effectively handle the changes that come their way. Employers are looking for people who can adapt to frequent changes and have the ability to implement effective strategies to tackle the changes.

As a leader, you should be ready to face challenges that come your way with much confidence and aggressiveness. Employers will appreciate your ability to handle frequent changes and how you solve the problems that emerge in stride.

On the other hand, leaders should be open to feedback and suggestions. Be open to making necessary changes when your staff is not satisfied with an aspect of the management or office environment. Always listen to their concern and strive to improve the workplace standards in order to give them an easy time at work.

Here are some examples of ways in which you can improve your flexibility skills:

  • Help a colleague meet a deadline for a funding proposal by working overtime;
  • Volunteer to carry out a key presentation when a colleague is off due to illness;
  • Volunteer to change your schedule in order to meet another colleague’s needs;
  • Tailoring a sales pitch to the unique needs of a customer;
  • Rewarding subordinates who make effective suggestions with great impact;
  • Offering to work overtime during an end-year rush;
  • Learning complex, new software that will help improve efficiency at work; and
  • Delegating routine tasks in order to focus on priorities.

  • Innovation

A great leader should possess innovative skills. Employers are looking for people who can brainstorm and come up with great ideas to help propel the organization forward. As a leader, you should learn how to brainstorm and come up with your own original ideas that are unique and solves ‘big’ problems.

On the other hand, innovation comes in handy when a company wants to improve their speed and accomplish tasks faster than their competitors. Yes, your delay may be limiting you more than you know. Innovation makes great leaders and improves their overall performance. It is a powerful and independent force that ensures things are done faster and on time. Hence, that’s why every leader should strive to possess it.


Almost every industry has a place for people with great leadership skills. Pursuing a career in leadership could be right for you if you possess some of the above traits, along with a sense of humor, honesty, and good judgment.

Written by JobTeaser

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