The 8 most important professional skills

Do you know what we mean when we talk about professional skills? These are skills and abilities needed to effectively develop a job. These can be grouped into three categories or groups: basic, technical and transversal skills.

Within each group, while it is true that each area of ​​work places more importance on certain skills or others, if there are skills that are more in demand than others in the business sector.

In this article, we will know what each of these three skill groups encompasses and what are the 8 most important professional skills in general.

    The 8 most important professional skills at work

    Professional skills are the skills, abilities and aptitudes of people and which enable them to successfully develop a certain type of work.

    Professional skills, in addition, they allow the individual to put his knowledge and skills into practice in a work environment, And make employees more valued in their industry.

    However, we should know that professional skills are classified into three groups: basic skills, technical skills and transversal skills. We will know, through this classification, the 8 most important professional skills within each group. We will also see examples of each of them:

    1. Basic skills

    The basic skills are all this basic knowledge that allows a person to access a certain type of training or occupation. This is the “minimum” that the person must have, in relation to certain knowledge, in order to be able to apply for training or a job.

    Examples of basic skills are: knowledge of the use of ICT, knowledge of a certain foreign language, etc.

    While there are many foundational skills, we’ll look at the most important (or most valued by businesses in general):

    1.1. Knowledge of foreign languages

    This would be an example of a basic skill, being currently one of the 8 most important professional skills as it is today. working environments are increasingly international, And in the same job can work people of multiple nationalities and who speak several languages.

    Thus, nowadays, knowing more than one foreign language offers many points as a candidate for a certain position (especially in skilled sectors).

    1.2. Knowledge of ICT (information and communication technologies)

    In an increasingly technological and digitized work environment, computer skills (at least minimal mastery) are becoming more and more essential. This is logically extrapolated to the selection processes in which we find ourselves immersed in the search for work.

    Thus, this basic skill would involve know how to use a computer, Internet, e-mail, be able to create an online CV, Sign up for job portals, etc.

    2. Technical skills

    Another of the 8 most important professional skills are technical skills (or hard skills), which are all these skills acquired as we train in a specific area.

    These are job-specific skills (or sectors), which means that they are very different in one area and another. To understand it better, let’s think of a person trained in the kitchen; a technical skill which must have, at the end of cooking studies, is the mastery of knives, or certain techniques of cooking food, for example.

    Technical skills are very specific to each areaSo, it is difficult to say which are the most important. Therefore, we selected three out of three different job fields.

    2.1. Marketing: web positioning

    One of the most important professional skills, at a technical level, in the marketing industry is web positioning. This implies mastery of SEO techniques (Search Engine Optimization), and also knowledge for the design and application of SEM (Search Engine Marketing) campaigns.

    2.2. Psychology: administration of psychological tests

    A highly sought after technical skill in the field of psychology is knowing certain psychological tests (for example a test to diagnose autism, such as TS-2 or ADI-R), as well as knowing how to test them. apply.

    In order to be able to administer certain psychological tests, there are specific trainings (and official certificates) in this regard.

    2.3. Computer engineering: knowledge of programming languages

    In computer engineering (or programming), one of the 8 most important (and sought after) professional skills, at a technical level, is one that involves know different types of programming languages, such as: C ++, PHP or Python. It is understood that we mean: to know them, to master them and to know how to use them.

    3. Transversal skills

    For their part, transversal skills are those personal characteristics that allow a person to adapt to a job and to develop it effectively. This type of skills used in the workplace (but also in others) they make it possible to transform knowledge into action, And are highly valued by companies because they differentiate the professional within their sector.

    Examples of transversal skills are: teamwork, initiative, ease of interpersonal relationships, effort, willingness to learn, versatility, etc.

    The most important transversal professional skills that appear in this article are as follows (although it should be noted that for each sector or job there will be some skills that are more important or needed than others).

    3.1. Ability to work in a team

    It is about the competence (and the disposition) that we have to collaborate with a team in a coordinated manner in accomplishing a certain task or in pursuit of a goal.

    This ability can be very useful both in the workplace and in universities or even for staff.

      3.2. Ability to take initiatives

      Initiative is another of the most important professional skills at transversal level, and it is a capacity that is increasingly appreciated by companies, as they are usually looking for people who want to contribute their entrepreneurial ideas.

      The initiative consists of the ability, or ability, to make contributions, come up with ideas and try new things. If in addition these ideas have for mission to improve the product or the service, then one speaks already of capacity of innovation (another transversal competition).

      3.3. Ability to resolve conflicts

      The ability to resolve conflicts (or problems) involves being able to handle and respond to situations, through the application of a certain strategy or method of resolution.

      usually involves identify the problem, make a diagnosis, formulate solutions, put them into practice and evaluate the results. In this sense, companies are looking for professionals who know how to react and act effectively in the face of unforeseen events; in colloquial terms, being able to “take the chestnuts out of the fire” at any time and in the face of possible obstacles.

      Bibliographical references:

      • Fernández, JT and Gámez, AN (2005). The development and management of professional skills: a look at training. Ibero-American Journal of Education.
      • Descals Palace. (2004). Organizational psychology. Ed. Pearson Prentice Hall. Madrid.
      • Peiró, JM (1991). Organizational psychology. Volume 1. UNED. Madrid.

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