Being reliable and dependable

Employability Skills

Employability skills or “soft skills” are the key to workplace success. Employability skills are a set of skills and behaviours that are necessary for every job. Employability skills are sometimes called soft skills, foundational skills, work-readiness skills, or job-readiness skills.

Being reliable and dependable

Being reliable and dependable means, basically, doing what you say that you will do. It also, however, means being able to look around and see what needs doing—and then do it.

This sounds simple, but it requires a wide range of skills, mostly personal rather than interpersonal.

First of all, doing what you say you will do means being organised, and managing your time effectively. You need to know how long things will take, and that you have the time to do them to the required standard. You also need to be able to identify what to do first, so that if anything is missed, it is less important. Our page time management explains how you can do this.

Being reliable also means being trustworthy. For example, this might mean not leaving work (too often) when things still need doing. Trustworthiness and conscientiousness are both parts of self management, which in turn is an important part of emotional intelligence. Self-regulation means that you have the self-discipline to do things that you may not want to do, but which you know are necessary.

People who are self-regulated and reliable take responsibility for their own actions and ensure that they live up to their values. They keep track of deadlines and deliver to them without needing to be chased up.

Being reliable does not, however, mean that you have to do everything yourself. Sometimes, it may mean asking for help when you see that you are not going to be able to meet a deadline otherwise.

The final element of being reliable is using your initiative to identify where work needs doing, and getting on and doing it. Daniel Goleman, who developed the concept of emotional intelligence, identified initiative as a key part self motivation He defined it as ‘readiness to act on opportunities’. To develop your ability to use your initiative, you may find it helpful to work on some techniques for creative thinking which are also helpful in addressing the final area: a willingness to learn.