What Should You be Looking for in Future Employers

By: Ashlee FB

Many of us are currently, or will be in the very near future, applying for jobs and entering the work force.

So often students get wrapped up concentrating on enhancing their resumes, volunteering, maintaining specified GPA’s, etc., so we are able to stay ahead and land the dream job for which we’ve all worked so hard. One thing many students forget is, yes, we should be constantly improving ourselves personally and professionally, but good employers should be doing the same.

Fortunately for us, there are certain standards we can expect from employers as well. Being a business student, one class we are required to take is Organizational Behavior Management. I feel this class is essential, not just to learn how to be an effective manager, but to learn what qualities to look for in future employers as well.

Future employers

So what exactly makes an organization a “good” place to work for, and what should you be looking for in an “effective” manager?

Positive and constant communication

Communication skills have been the number one skill employers look for, for a number of years in a row; this transcends into manager positions as well. It is absolutely essential that managers know how to effectively and actively communicate with their employees. The manager is the voice for information between all areas of the organization and without this voice, goals and other organizational messages can be misconstrued. It is also important for a manager to be a good listener. Managers need to let employees voice their emotions in a safe and confidential environment. Stifled emotions can turn into resentment, diminishing workplace relationships quickly. At the same time, emotions that are not adequately dealt with can interfere with discussions, which will most likely be the main form of communication in a given work environment. Communication is the single most important area in which a manager can be proficient.

Being a good coach

An effective manager acknowledges that different people require different levels of motivation and knows exactly how to motivate each employee to do his or her best in the workplace. Managers should also know how to challenge his or her employees by communicating achievable goals and offering goal-oriented feedback regularly. Part of training coachable employees is to be a good manager as well.

Make people feel good about what they do

In an organization, it is crucial every employee feels valued in the work they do and the service they provide. A successful manager is great at identifying their employees’ strengths and weaknesses, and continually applauds them when employees do their job correctly. This recognition does not go unnoticed by employees and in turn creates a positive environment for the entire organization; it is important for employees to hear this positivity from time to time. Good managers know that, generally, happy people make productive people.

Treat everyone equally

We have all had jobs where our managers review conduct/harassment rules and most of us know what is right and wrong as far as these terms go in the workplace. Treating employees equally, however, goes much further than just abiding by harassment and conduct rules. Many times, favoritism can be a large issue, and it often happens on a subconscious level. The tendency is to give more recognition to the people who do the best in their roles or to those with whom we become friends. While it is human nature to naturally gravitate towards certain people, it is important as a manager to try to subdue those feelings and be as impartial as possible.

Empowers and promotes teamwork

Although many of us have been overworked with group projects throughout a majority of our undergraduate career, teamwork is a key player in any organization and also a skill many employers look for today. It is the manager’s responsibility to teach other people how to do a good job; it is by the manager’s example that expectations are set. Manager’s are, for the most part, in their positions because you’re good at what they do, but that doesn’t mean they’re supposed to do everything. Instilling trust and confidence in the team makes for better results and happier employees.

Read Ashlee’s other posts

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About ellenhatfield

New professional in the field of Student Affairs in Higher Education. I am a Career Counselor at the University of MN Duluth.

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