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Entry by Pat Patterson

Before an internship or job interview, it is important to learn as much as you can about the particular opportunity and organization.  The more you know about an opportunity and organization, the more you can understand an employer’s needs, and how you may address such needs if hired.  However, in general, employers will look for certain skills/qualities in potential hires.  According to NACE’s Job Outlook 2011 survey, employers listed verbal communication skills as the top quality they look for:

Survey respondents indicate that verbal communication skills topped the list of “soft” skills they seek in new college graduates looking to join their organizations, followed by strong work ethic, teamwork skills, analytical skills, and initiative.

Employers Rank Top 5 Candidate Skills/Qualities

  1. Verbal Communication Skills
  2. Strong Work Ethic
  3. Teamwork Skills
  4. Analytical Skills
  5. Initiative

Read more. 

To hone your verbal communication skills, make sure you practice your elevator speech and interview question answers.  Also, check with your career services office to schedule a mock interview.  Remember, as cliché as it may sound, practice makes perfect.

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