What are conceptual skills?
Way back in the 70s, one American organizational and social psychologist identified which are three leadership skills that every manager should possess: technical, interpersonal, and …conceptual.
More than sixty years later, all three of these skills continue to be highly relevant in the business world, especially when it comes to leaders and employees in managerial positions.
How does it sound for someone to be able to understand how to use tools to repair a bike, or understand how to read music sheets in order to play an instrument? Try to convert this to management.
Being conceptually skilled means that you can understand complex notions, work with abstract ideas, create strategic plans, and drive the organization toward reaching its North Star.
Why are conceptual skills important on your resume?
Big-picture skills are especially important and needed in management, as they allow leaders to foresee changes and opportunities in the macro environment.
Therefore, if you are aiming to get that Middle management or C-level position, your employer would find great value in your ability to think in concepts, visualize ideas, create models, and predict the moves of your competition and customers.
Every organization needs tech-savvy employees who can get things done on the operational level. No team or organization, however, can function without being guided by some sort of strategic plan.
There comes the role of people with conceptual skills who are able to look beyond daily tactical tasks and come up with a vision and step-by-step action plan for better business performance.
The list of management ideas is endless. What matters, however, is that at their core these ideas relate to issues or areas for improvement.
This includes anything and everything in between how to run a business, how teams should be organized, how employees should be treated, and how customers should be retained.
In a nutshell, if you are good at coming up with business ideas, you are conceptually skilled. Now let’s look at some ways in which you can actually demonstrate your ability to ideate and solve problems.
What skills, activities, and accomplishments help you highlight your conceptual skills?
How many soft skills are needed for a person you identify, conceptualize and think of solutions to complex problems? Most definitely quite a few.
Despite the fact that it seems challenging to demonstrate conceptual skills, there are multiple ways in which you can do that. Here are the most important types of conceptual abilities that would help you stand out.
- Analytical Skills & Creative Thinking: people with analytical thinking are able to understand the nuts and bolts of problems, while creativity enables them to add abstract ideas on top of the practical insights to come up with solutions.
- Strategic planning & Leadership Skills: concepts and visions can only be of value when they are used as a base for the creation of strategic plans and aligning all business divisions, departments, and teams around one major goal.
- Decision-making & Communication Skills: being confident and quick to make decisions is important when the time comes to turn hypothetical scenarios and visions into action. And since you can’t possibly do that alone, you need to get everyone on the same page.