Arielle Sandor wrote this on
February 3, 2016 | No Comments

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Candidates waiting to be interviewed.

I once had the pleasure to talk to a Human Resources consultant concerning the hiring process. I was a young man then, of about 20 years with not even a gram of experience. From our discussion he gave very insightful tips that helped me understand what interviewers look out for.

To be honest, I never thought I would ever write about this in my entire life until I started working with Duma Works, one of Kenya’s premier recruitment firms. While interacting with employers, I discovered that most of them emphasized certain skills that unfortunately most candidates did not have or even worse, failed to communicate effectively that they had them.
Read on and find out whether you have been utilizing these five key skills.


“The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn’t said”- Peter Drucker

For most employers Communication skills is the king of skills. I remember touching on the same while mentoring a group of University students and I was taken aback when one of then kept stressing that communication skills is being fluent in English. I was devastated! Horrified!

To some extent, I agree that speaking any language fluently boosts one’s communications skills significantly but that is just one side of the coin.

The other side of the coin has got equally important components like Emotional Intelligence. This is,the ability to interpret people’s emotions and know how to react appropriately. Sometimes a smile can change a lot, or even addressing someone by the proper title, with the right tonal voice of course.

Goretti Kimani, a Human Resources specialist with Peoplelink consultants, stresses the importance of communication skills in this article written for the standard.


“Education is not for the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think” Albert Einstein

If Communication Skills is king, then Critical Thinking Skills is the queen. Why? Various social institutions like businesses, governments, NGOs etc. serve the main purpose of solving people problems.

For that to happen, they must carefully analyze their environment so as to come up with solutions befitting the problems at hand. You know what they say about planning, if you fail to plan you are planning to fail.

It is no wonder that everywhere you go, having this skill will make your job performance much better!


“I make progress by having people around who are smarter than I am and listening to them. And I assume that everyone is smarter about something than I am”-Henry J. Kaiser

Are you a team player or a lone ranger? Some careers, such as art, design and architecture might need plenty of time alone. However, at the end of the day, everyone is working towards the same goal.

The designer will need to marketing team to provide the brief, and the architect will need the surveyor to come up with a suitable and affordable cost structure. Bottom line, everything, and everyone is part of an ecosystem. So, just like football, every goal scored is not an individual effort but a team effort.

One such person who impressed me with her people skills is Esther Kinuthia. Through her outgoing personality, she has managed to achieve a lot compared to her age. you can read inspiring her story here.

So to our dear introverts, take some time and understand the game!


“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader” – John Quincy Adams

For purposes of continued success, most company leaders often look out for people who can take over the leadership mantle. In an ideal environment, company leaders do identify people they can mentor to fill their big shoes.

The big question is “do you have what it takes?”

Leadership is not about being aggressive or assertive, but having the ability to identify better opportunities, make others identify them too and guide the team on converting the same opportunities to success stories.


“Survival is neither for the fastest, nor the strongest but for those who are willing to accept change”

“Think outside the box!”

How any times have you heard this expression? What comes to mind? Most people I asked this question replied that doing something out of the ordinary or outside the norm is what comes to mind.

I could not agree more. Creativity, innovation and improvement usually go within the same skill toolbox.

In a continuous changing world, consumers, citizens, workers etc. expect improvement for the better. For any business or political entity, the price of ignoring improvement and innovation is unfathomable.

So, if you are a job applicant, please do remember that the reason you might get hired is not because you have good papers but rather because of your skills. The papers merely serve the purpose of sharpening your skills and play a secondary role in the interview process.

All the best in your job search and remember, Duma Works is here for you if you need us.

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