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The One Skill that Will Land You the Next Job Yet 90% Job Seekers Have Neglected

The One Skill that Will Land You the Next Job Yet 90% Job Seekers Have Neglected

Are you looking for a job searching tip that actually works? Here is one skill that 90% of job seekers typically ignore.

What is this ignored skill? Writing.

“If you are trying to decide among a few people to fill a position, hire the best writer. Clear writing is a sign of clear thinking. Great writers know how to communicate. They make things easy to understand. They can put themselves in someone else’s shoes. They know how to omit. And those are qualities you want in any candidate.” – Jason Fried, author of Rework

Clear Writing Means Clear Thinking

Simply put, employers seek strong writers. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, 73.4% of employers look for candidates with strong writing skills.[1]

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Kyle Wiens also remarks in I Won’t Hire People Who Use Poor Grammar. Here’s Why [2],

“Good grammar makes good business sense – and not just when it comes to hiring writers. Grammar signifies more than just a person’s ability to remember high school English. I’ve found that people who make fewer mistakes on a grammar test also make fewer mistakes when they are doing something unrelated to writing – like stocking shelves and labeling parts.”

Wiens in fact uses grammar as his litmus test. He made his employees to prove whether they were detail-oriented with the grammar test.

People typically do not write well and this impacts future career potential. If you do not possess the skills necessary to write well, why would a prospective employer put trust and faith in your ability to be an effective communicator? Try the following exercise if you do not believe me.

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Describe the difference between the following:

  • Its and It’s
  • Your and You’re
  • Affect and Effect
  • Anymore and Any more
  • Assure or Ensure or Insure

Don’t fret if you struggled with this exercise as you are in good company. However, many employers complain that they cannot find qualified candidates because of this.

Writing Is the Foundation of a Good Idea

So, what can you do? Simply get help. There are quite a few places to turn to online for assistance with improving your writing skills and it’s important to find the right one.

Websites like this will help you with professional writing development:

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  • Plagiarism Checker
  • Essay Outline
  • Essay Structure
  • Formatting Standards
  • Paper Formats (AP, MLA, Harvard, Chicago/Turabian)
  • Bibliography

Additionally, you set the deadline, essay type, word count, and academic level when working with places like PaperWritingHelp.net. You cannot skip this tip, otherwise you will actually lose credibility in the next tip.

Put Your Writing out There

    Author Austin Kleon writes in Steal Like An Artist,

    “Do good work, then put it where people can see it.”

    This is quite possibly some of the best advice you will ever receive when it comes to writing, yet it is also the most intimidating.

    I have fully embraced this idea. The more I write, the more confident I become in my writing. The more I share my writing, the more confident I am with my communication skills.

    Finally, let’s take a quick look at a few more practical tips you can use to improve your writing. [3]

    I guarantee you will improve your chances of landing the job you want and desire if you actively work to improve your writing skills. So, master this ignored skill and put yourself a notch above everyone else.

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    “Don’t wait until you know who you are to get started.” – Austin Kleon

    Reference

    More by this author

    Dr. Jamie Schwandt

    Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt & Red Team Critical Thinker

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    Last Updated on January 21, 2020

    What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

    What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

    Do you think of yourself as a creative person? Do you play the drums or do watercolor paintings? Perhaps compose songs or direct plays? Can you even relate to any of these so called ‘creative’ experiences? Growing up, did you ever have that ‘artistic’ sibling or friend who excelled in drawing, playing instruments or literature? And you maybe wondered why you can’t even compose a birthday card greeting–or that drawing stick figures is the furthest you’ll ever get to drawing a family portrait. Many people have this common assumption that creativity is an inborn talent; only a special group of people are inherently creative, and everyone else just unfortunately does not have that special ability. You either have that creative flair or instinct, or you don’t. But, this is far from the truth! So what is creativity?

    Can I Be Creative?

    The fact is, that everyone has an innate creative ability. Despite what most people may think, creativity is a skill that everyone can learn and hone on. It’s a skill with huge leverage that allows you to generate enormous amounts of value from relatively little input. How is that so? You’ll have to start by expanding your definition of creativity. Ironically, you have to be creative and ‘think out of the box’ with the definition! Creativity at its heart, is being able to see things in a way that others cannot. It’s a skill that helps you find new perspectives to create new possibilities and solutions to different problems. So, if you encounter different challenges and problems that need solving on a regular basis, then creativity is an invaluable skill to have.Let’s say, for example, that you work in sales. Having creativity will help you to look for new ways to approach and reach out to potential customers. Or perhaps you’re a teacher. In this role you have to constantly look for new ways to deliver your message and educate your students.

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    How Creativity Works

    Let me break another misconception about creativity, which is that it’s only used to create completely “new” or “original” things. Again, this is far from the truth. Because nothing is ever completely new or original. Everything, including works of art, doesn’t come from nothing. Everything derives from some sort of inspiration. That means that creativity works by connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value.From this perspective, you can see a lot of creativity in action. In technology, Apple combines traditional computers with design and aesthetics to create new ways to use digital products. In music, a musician may be inspired by various styles of music, instruments and rhythms to create an entirely new type of song. All of these examples are about connecting different ideas, finding common ground amongst the differences, and creating a completely new idea out of them.

    What Really Is Creativity?

    Creativity Needs an Intention

    Another misconception about the creative process is that you can just be in a general “creative” state. Real creativity isn’t about coming up with “eureka!” moments for random ideas. Instead, to be truly creative, you need to have a direction. You have to ask yourself this question: “What problem am I trying to solve?” Only by knowing the answer to this question can you start flexing your creativity muscles. Often times, the idea of creativity is associated with the ‘Right’ brain, with intuition and imagination. Hence a lot of focus is placed on the ‘Right’ brain when it comes to creativity. But, to get the most out of creativity, you need to utilize both sides of your brain–Right and Left–which means using the analytical and logical part of your brain, too. This may sound surprising to you, but creativity has a lot to do with problem solving. And, problem solving inherently involves logic and analysis. So instead of throwing out the ‘Left’ brain, full creativity needs them to work in unison. For example, when you’re looking for new ideas, your ‘Left’ brain will guide you to a place of focus, which is based on your objective behind the ideas you’re searching for. The ‘Right’ brain then guides you to gather and explore based on your current focus. And when you decide to try out these new ideas, your ‘Right’ brain will give you novel solutions outside of the ones you already know. Your ‘Left’ brain then helps you evaluate and tune the solutions to work better in practice. So, logic and creativity actually work hand in hand, and not one at the expense of the other.

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    Creativity Is a Skill

    At the end of the day, creativity is a skill. It’s not some innate or natural born talent that some have over others. What this means is that creativity and innovation can be practiced and improved upon systematically.A skill can be learned and practiced by applying your strongest learning styles. Want to know what your learning style is? Try this test. A skill can be measured and improved through a Feedback Loop, and can be continuously upgraded over time by regular practice. Through regular practice, your creativity goes through different stages of proficiency. This means that you can become more and more creative! If you never thought that creativity was relevant to you, or that you don’t have a knack for being creative… think again! You can use creativity in any aspect of your life. In fact you should use it, as it will allow you to to break through your usual loop, get you out of your comfort zone, and inspire you to grow and try new things. Creativity will definitely give you an edge when you’re trying to solve a problem or come up with new solutions.

    Start Connecting the Dots

    Excited to start honing your creativity? Here at Lifehack, we’ve got a wealth of knowledge to help you get started. We understand that creativity is a matter of connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value. So, if you want to learn how to start connecting the dots, check out these tips:

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    Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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