How can international students use leadership skills to stand out to graduate employers?

For students around the globe, making the leap from recent graduate to feeling confident in a graduate role is a big step. It may be even harder at this stage to imagine leading a project, a team or even a company however there are several things you can do to realise the impact you can have in a global workplace. Leadership skills can show a lot to an employer, but how do you gain such experience as a student? What’s important here is looking for opportunities that can widen your experience and gaining the confidence to take these into the working world.

How can leadership help with employers?

Being a leader doesn’t mean you need to be leading a team right now, you can lead others by showing and sharing your skills and qualities. A good leader possesses the ability to be flexible and open to new ideas, a disrupter in their sector paving the way for new ideas. Harnessing this mindset can show employers where your potential lies. While you may not have experience of leading a team, there are many routes to gaining the skills that will help you get there. Try to think innovatively at each stage of your student journey and career. Be curious and try to engage with your industry where you can while studying as connecting to others will aid your learning and help you discover where your star skills lie. Think about what brings out the best in you and highlights your best skills. Considering what suits you best will help you find areas you can naturally lead in.

Where can you gain these skills?

There are several ways to gain skills that can help you work toward your leadership abilities. Try to find new opportunities that will broaden your knowledge, help you network and gather skills that can be used as examples when it comes to applying for roles. Start by looking at what your institution has to offer. Most universities have a wealth of opportunities available, from international and global schemes to training such as Common Purpose. UWE, Bristol recently provided training through Common Purpose for their students to participate in contemporary online services to develop the next generation of leaders. Their workshops bring students together with meaningful engagement to share demonstratable skills that can be used to find a fulfilling career. These sessions are designed to help students thrive and reach for leadership positions not just in the workplace but in society too. It’s not just about gaining skills but having to confidence to use and share them with others. Look online to see what your institution is currently offering that can help your progression and choose one skill or workshop series to focus on each term to help your progression.

GradLink connects international students to global employers, opportunities and ideas. For the latest updates to support your employability from student to graduate, sign up today for our newsletter!

By Jen Garmston Published: Apr 01,2021