College Jobs Offer Ideal Opportunities for Developing Leadership Skills
Today, leadership skills are in great demand by employers who want to make sure the men and women they hire are able to help their businesses grow. Students who want to secure the best positions following graduation should take advantage of situations during college that will allow them to develop the type of leadership skills employers are most likely going to be looking for. College jobs provide an ideal forum to develop leadership skills and to show off those skills as they are built. While the types of skills most in demand may vary from employer to employer, college jobs and internships generally are diverse and flexible enough to build the leadership characteristics most employers are sure to be seeking.
Most employers will appreciate employees who show the following types of leadership skills: vision, and an ability to set goals and reach them; ability to motivate others and build a team; the ability to take direction and ask pointed questions; the ability to synthesis experiences into improvement and action; the ability to work independently when required; and the ability to deal with setbacks and use them as opportunities to move forward.
Leadership skills can be developed in several ways through “on the job” experience. Because they are usually supervised, part-time jobs while at college, allow you to voice your independent ideas and thoughts without risk to the company. This type of experience is essential in learning how to translate and communicate your own ideas and vision to superiors on the hunt for positions such as marketing jobs who are looking for ways to help a company move forward.
One of the keys to developing leadership skills while at college is to observe the leaders around you, who can serve as powerful examples of what works and what doesn’t. Look for opportunities to volunteer for duties and tasks that will allow you to observe leaders directly, and to aid them in their own work. Using this type of mentor-ship approach can be a valuable tool in developing the types of leadership qualities prized by employers in todays’ marketplace. While looking for opportunities to showcase your abilities, don’t hesitate to ask for help when needed; a good leader knows that asking for help is part of building an effective team and establishing trusting relationships with other employees.
Another advantage to being at college while working and developing leadership skills is that it is an ideal place to ask questions about how you can improve your performance. Don’t be afraid to ask supervisors about what they consider to be valuable qualities in an employee, and how you can improve your ability to lead others.
In addition to providing work experience and income, a college job is a great place to practice and develop all the skills you’ll need to be a valuable and effective employee. Use the time to gather information, observe actions and reactions and ask questions that can help you become a better leader and make you more in demand when you being your own search for the ideal job.
My own view is that our future leaders will not only possess the academic skills that colleges provide for students, but they will need emotional intelligence as well. Working and learning provides students with the opportunity to develop both skills in equal measure. So, if you are at college, you will stand a much better chance of success in today’s working world, if you make good use of your time and seek out part-time local employment opportunities near you. And all you need to do is get out and ask…
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