How to Give Yourself a Leg Up Over the Competition

With the population constantly increasing, there’s more competition than ever in the job market. Even if you have the necessary skills for your job, it can be hard to look like the best applicant in a large pool of potential employees. This is even more difficult if your resume happens to get lost in a sea of online applications. 

The hunt for a new job can be especially frustrating if you have been turned down before. Instead of dwelling on recent failures, however, there are a few ways you can get a leg up over the competition. Whether you’re trying to bolster your resume or grow as a person, here are some of the best ways you can become a more desirable employee. 

Improve your communication skills 

In a recent survey that looked at over 250,000 job listings, the most important characteristic in a desirable employee was the ability to communicate. This soft skill can seem easy to overlook — after all, talking is easy, but communication is so much more than simply expressing yourself at the office. 

If you’re not a team player, there’s no way that you’ll be chosen over the competition. Recruiters and hiring managers are experts at sniffing out poor communicators from the bunch, and if a poor communicator is chosen, they won’t be at the company for long. That’s why developing your communication skills are key in proving that you’re a great applicant. 

If you’re looking to join an attorney marketing agency, for example, they will look at your communications skills and how you can align them to fit their needs and messaging. This will most likely entail a focus on clients, how to follow-up with clients and partners, and ways to reach prospective clients. After all, the application of your communication skills will vary from one environment to the other, so it’s important to learn what your strengths are and how you can apply them best. Communication is, perhaps, one of the most difficult characteristics to change since we’re already stuck in our old ways. Identifying our shortcomings in communication is the first step. Improving these faults in your communication comes next. Reading books and taking an online learning self-assessment are just two of the many ways you can learn to be a better communicator. Some people might find that improving their listening skills is a great start. When you’re ready to become a better applicant, work on becoming a better communicator in the workplace. 

Acquire new skills to set you apart 

Many people struggle as they look for new work because they have been doing the same thing for many years. If you only know how to do one thing, you will seem far less attractive than an applicant with a rich background. Learning a new skill can give you an edge over the competition and make you seem like a more well-rounded employee. That’s why investing in an online class or volunteering for a specific industry can be a great resume builder. Nowadays, having a background in computers, data analysis, marketing, or something creative proves that you have more to offer than your previous job. 

Learn how to market yourself 

Sprucing up your resume and managing your social media is a great first step. After all, the vetting process for new hires has become more cut-throat than ever. If you want to get a leg up over the competition, you have to stand out. That means investing in an attractive resume and getting all your ducks in a row. 

For example, it might be a good idea to get a LinkedIn profile and set your personal social media accounts to private. The LinkedIn profile shows that you care about your job while setting your personal accounts to private will shield any information that’s better kept from your employers. While you should be able to do what you want on your own time, your employers don’t need to know about your wild vacation over the holidays. 

When you do land that interview, dress to impress and exude a confident image. It’s natural to feel nervous, but being the most confident version of yourself will establish a great first impression with your potential employer. 

Landing a new job is hard enough without worrying about the competition. When you want to look more marketable to potential employers, rely on these tips to stand out and get a leg up over the competition.

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