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21 Examples of Employability

Employability is the value offered by an employee to employers. This is the collection of attributes that differentiates between individuals who are in high demand from employers and those who may have persistent problems in finding suitable work. The following are the basic elements of employability.


The health of an individual as it relates to their ability to direct energies towards work.

Communication Skills

Communication skills including business communications such as marketing, sales and stakeholder management abilities.

Social Skills

Social skills including building rapport, influencing and collaboration.

Technology Skills

An ability to be productive with the technologies an employer is using.

Fluid Intelligence

Fluid intelligence is the capacity to learn new things and respond to novel situations in a reasonable way.


A willingness and ability to change. For example, an experienced employee who is able to quickly adapt to a new corporate culture.


An individual's experience in a profession or life in general. Individuals tend to make mistakes early in a career, learn from these mistakes and improve such that experienced individuals are often productive.

Formal Education

Formal education can provide a foundational knowledge that is not easily gained through self-study or experience. For example, a computer science program that teaches first principles of computing such as computational complexity that may not be obvious from working on code or scripts in a professional setting.

Tacit Abilities

Talents that can't be easily acquired or taught. For example, an executive with a long history of making good decisions that produced superior return on invested capital.

Know How

Practical knowledge that can be applied to producing value. For example, a technician who knows how to fix an elevator.

Domain Knowledge

Knowledge of a subject, profession or industry. For example, a software developer who has broad knowledge of the investment banking industry.


Diligence is the ability to apply your full concentration even if you aren't feeling motivated.


Leadership is the ability to get people moving in the same direction.

Cultural Capital

Cultural capital is the ability to influence in the context of a culture. For example, a boat salesperson who is fully immersed in sailing culture.

Social Status

An individual's reputation and how they are perceived by others. For example, an individual who is perceived as fashionable and cool who easily gets job offers from fashion retailers.

Relational Capital

An individual's professional network such as a salesperson who knows a large number of people in an industry.

Personal Resilience

Personal resilience is the ability to endure stress without a loss of productivity. For example, a cabin attendant who remains professional and helpful in severe turbulence.


Self-direction is the ability to set goals, handle problems, make decisions and navigate uncertainty without direction from others.


It isn't fun to hire and manage someone who wants to be somewhere else. As such, motivation for a role makes an employee more employable. For example, front desk staff at a hotel who truly enjoy their role and view it as important as opposed to viewing it as below their talents.


In many cases, employers will hire the candidate they find most likable.


In some roles, employers value grit such as a willingness to challenge others and high tolerance for disagreement.
Overview: Employability
The value offered by an employee to employers.
Related Concepts


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A list of abilities that are commonly viewed as a talent as opposed to a commodity skill.

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The definition of personal presence with examples.

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A list of common organizational skills with examples.

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A list of technology skills and skill levels.

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A list of synonyms for talent.

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A list of design talents.

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A list of common character strengths.

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A list of common character weaknesses.

Character Traits

A list of common character traits.


The definition of incompetence with examples.


A list of skills based on standard business terminology.

Research Skills

A list of common research skills.

Professional Skills

A list of common professional skills including hard skills and soft skills.

Administrative Skills

A list of commonly required administration skills.

Creativity Skills

A list of common creativity skills.

Social Strengths

A list of common social strengths.

Important Strengths

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