Posted by Robert Half on 06 September 2016
Hiring managers are increasingly seeking employees with strong critical thinking abilities.
While it’s easy to list technical proficiencies on a resume, an aptitude for critical thinking can be more challenging to convey.
Here are some tips for highlighting your critical thinking skills throughout the job hunt process.
Reframe your resume
It’s important to not only list critical thinking and other soft skills on your resume, but also to tie them into your explanation of job duties or accomplishments. Show how your critical thinking skills played an important role in the successful outcome of a project. Use powerful verbs like ‘identified’, ‘analysed’ and ‘managed’ to describe your efforts. If possible, go one step further and provide any metrics related to the project, like sales growth. Providing concrete accomplishments will help make the job hunt process a success.
Make a business case
Your work isn’t the only thing on display. You can also shine a light on your problem solving skills by succinctly breaking down each project from start to finish. In both the written summary and your verbal presentation, emphasise the challenge at hand, the solutions you considered and your process for interpreting, evaluating and solving the problem. Any time you can make a business case for your decisions, do so, particularly if you can tie the outcome to measurable results.
Spotlight your critical thinking skills in interviews
It’s not uncommon for a hiring manager to ask for evidence of how you’ve put your decision-making and problem-solving skills into practice. In your job hunt process, focus not only on the outcome but also how you came to the conclusion. Remember: The interviewer isn’t looking for a right or wrong answer but rather a snapshot of your train of thought. Give examples of how you conducted research, consulted appropriate sources, weighed your options, took the time to digest the information, and considered similar past scenarios.
Come to the job interview armed with a few examples of how you’ve handled making important decisions or solving complex problems. You may even be able to weave them into the conversation without being directly asked about your decision-making or critical thinking skills.
While you may be feeling the pressure to keep your technical skills sharp, remember that some hiring managers most value flexible, collaborative and well-rounded workers. Highlighting your critical thinking skills in your job hunt process may help you win them over.
This article originally appeared as How to Show Off Your Critical Thinking Skills and Land the Job on The Creative Group blog.