13 Uncommon Skills That Make Job Applicants Stand Out

The fight for the best jobs can be fierce. Even if you are a talented applicant with a lot to offer, you will be competing with others who also have strong credentials..

You'll probably need at least one unique talent that makes you the greatest candidate for the position if you want to stand out from the competition. We contacted Jaune' Little, director of recruiting services at Insperity, and Brandon DiCroce, head of fintech engineering search at EC1 Partners, for additional information on this. 
Here are 13 extraordinary skills, in their opinion, that hiring managers are now looking for.
1. Design Thinking

“Candidates who possess a deep understanding of design thinking can bring a fresh perspective to problem-solving and innovation in any industry,” said DiCroce. “The ability to empathize, think critically and propose innovative solutions sets these individuals apart by fostering a culture of continuous improvement within organizations.”

2. Cognitive Flexibility

Living in the era of rapid technological advancements and ever-changing business landscapes has made cognitive flexibility a highly valued skill, DiCroce added.

"Candidates who exhibit cognitive flexibility can seamlessly adapt their thinking and approach to tackling complex challenges," the candidate remarked. "Their capacity to absorb new information, pivot their strategies, and embrace uncertainty enables them to navigate uncharted territory, making them invaluable assets to organizations seeking growth and resilience."

3. Systems Thinking

Modern organizations operate within intricate and interconnected systems.

“Candidates who possess a keen understanding of systems thinking can analyze the interdependencies within these systems, identify potential bottlenecks and propose holistic solutions,” he said. “Their ability to see the bigger picture, while considering the smallest details, allows them to optimize processes, drive efficiency and ultimately create sustainable value for businesses.”

4. Cultural Intelligence

excellent candidates with excellent cultural intelligence have a distinct advantage in our more international environment, according to DiCroce. "This ability goes beyond language ability or global experience."

Instead, he claimed, businesses are seeking people who can provide a lot more.

"The ability to successfully navigate a variety of cultural situations, empathize with others' viewpoints, and effectively communicate and collaborate across cultural barriers are all examples of cultural intelligence. Such individuals bring a multicultural and inclusive perspective, which is essential for success in today's workplaces.

5. Digital Ethnography

Now that the digital landscape has become an integral part of our lives, DiCroce said candidates who possess skills in digital ethnography have valuable insights to offer.

“Digital ethnography involves analyzing online communities, behaviors and trends to uncover deep-seated consumer insights,” he said. “Candidates who are adept at leveraging digital platforms and extracting meaningful data can contribute to strategic decision-making, customer-centric product development and targeted marketing efforts.”

6. Understanding of Artificial Intelligence

If you’re an authority on AI, Jaune’ Little said this can give you a competitive edge.

“AI is becoming increasingly important in the modern workplace and job applicants who demonstrate knowledge of the field and how to apply this technology can be invaluable for employers,” she said.

7. Foreign Language

“The ability to speak more than one language can be very useful in a business setting, as it can open potential customers and clients to new markets,” Little said.

Therefore, if you’re bilingual, you’ll always want to include this on your resume — even if you think it isn’t applicable to the job.

8. Coding

Since technology is ever-changing, she said candidates with coding skills can help businesses build and maintain websites, create software and keep other digital products up to date.

“While some skills are more uncommon than others, when a candidate has multiple skill sets, they can easily move throughout an organization and add value to several teams, which can lead to a long career within an organization,” she said.

9. Data Analysis

Employers look for someone who can read data and comprehend the narrative it presents.

Most businesses rely on data to run efficiently and pivot when necessary, according to Little. Employees can assist leadership in developing and implementing initiatives based on data with the support of data analysis.

10. Adaptability

It might not seem like an uncommon skill, but if you have a proven ability to be adaptable, this may work to your advantage..

“Many businesses are inundated with work, some of which is due to breaking into new industries,” Little said. “Candidates who have proven they can adapt to change and are flexible enough in their skillset to move where they are needed most within the organization will stand out — especially in comparison to a candidate who desires to stay in the box they know best.”

11. Self-Starting

While employing a smaller workforce, "so many businesses are busier now than ever before," she noted. Many managers may not have the time to train new workers as fully as they once might have due to the rising business and tight labor market.

The ability to advertise yourself as a self-starter may not be novel, but it may now be more useful than ever.

“Many employers are seeking self-starters who require minimal guidance day to day,” she said. “Topping it off, being able to manage multiple projects at once and keep them on track is a great benefit to any employer.”

12. Creative Problem-Solving

Everyone doesn’t have the ability to come up with creative solutions to problems faced by companies, so if you do, she said this can boost your candidacy.

“Being able to proactively identify problems, find solutions and bring those ideas to the forefront is a highly sought-after skill,” she said. “Thinking outside the box and coming up with creative solutions can aid companies by helping them avoid problems in the future.”

13. Written and Verbal Communication

“Written and verbal communication skills seem basic, but top-notch talent who can communicate in a clear and concise manner are an asset to any team,” she said. “Couple this skill with other attributes, and the candidate floats to the top.”

If you’re currently undervaluing your outstanding written and verbal communication skills, it’s time to put them at the forefront.

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