When it comes to any job, the expected skills that you need to have as stated in the job description are not necessarily the only skills that employers will be looking for. How can knowing a foreign language help you in your sales job? How can knowing basic sales skills help you in your dance audition? If you want to stand out as a job applicant, you'll have to apply your skills to your desired job, even if at first they don't seem related. Have an open mind and make sure your résumé has these skills!
These days, almost any job that requires you to use an email account will require strong writing skills. While you don't have to be Shakespeare, you do have to have a strong command over your language and be able to write with conviction, confidence, and yes, perfect grammar. Renee O'Farrell of Chron, writes, "People with good writing skills are generally seen as more credible...Better writers tend to get higher grades and be perceived as more competent and more intelligent than their less literary counterparts." If you're a little shaky on your i's and e's, your local library will likely offer free writing classes for members. Check them out!
2. Foreign Language
The majority of us forgot the little Spanish or French we probably learned in high school by the time we graduated, but we should not underestimate the importance of knowing a foreign language, even in the age where most of the world speaks English or has access to a translator (or app). Knowing a foreign language can be helpful in a variety of domains, not just those involving global communications. If you work in any public place, knowing a foreign language can help you communicate with tourists and make them feel that much more comfortable. It also shows that you can use and train different parts of your brain.
3. Participation in Sports
General health is a huge indicator that you are a disciplined worker, but specific involvement in sports or other athletic team activities suggests that you are used to working with others to accomplish a task. It also reveals that you have a competitive side, which is an asset in jobs that require being a bit of a hustler (like almost any corporate job). Communication is a necessary skill in almost all sports as well, and vital in all jobs. If you have no way to exert your energy, employers may expect you to be low energy or out sick a lot.
4. Basic Math
While calculus is not a requirement for a lot of everyday jobs, a basic math knowledge reveals that you value attention to detail and can be trusted not to make careless mistakes. If you're working a POS, math is essential. If you're planning a budget, math is essential. Even if you're in the arts, you need to be aware of timing and physics.
5. Computer Programming
In any job that requires web work (which is increasingly on the rise), a basic knowledge of code will be greatly beneficial. If you know how to manipulate a source page, it can save you a lot of headaches deferring to the appropriate department. It can make the difference of making a web page look more professional versus just letting it be. Any way you can show a wide range of skills will make you a more valuable employee.
Sales is an extremely important and underrated skill to those that are seeking jobs not necessarily in sales. Why? Because being able to present a clean, professional front, exhibit knowledge about a product, and drive someone to a sale, means that you can be trusted to be a reliable face to your new company. Don't exclude sales jobs from your resume because you think they are minor.
Especially if you are interested in working in a startup, it helps to have experience with basic accounting principles and software. You may be asked to take on this role even if you haven't necessarily applied for it. Accounting is more than just numbers; it is an ability to organize, follow procedure, and keep meticulous records. A strong accounting background will mean that you can neatly and professionally keep and maintain confidential information. That means you can likely be trusted. For those that are a little rusty on assets and liabilities, take a look at this resource.