This is the fourth of a five part series.

West Michigan Works! now offers workshops designed to help you bring important employability skills to your job search or current workplace—skills that West Michigan employers have identified as the ones they look for in an ideal candidate or employee.

WorkReady workshops measure how well you understand and use nine important employability skills. Over the next few weeks, we will share all nine essential skills.


People show responsibility in the workplace when they complete their assigned duties on time and correctly. They may also take on tasks because they feel “it’s the right thing to do.”

People who are responsible are a pleasure to work with; they are helpful, reliable and accountable. They take ownership of their mistakes or inappropriate actions. It’s no wonder that employers rate responsibility as one of the most important workplace skills.


Employers also look for employees with good reasoning skills. These individuals are able to think critically, problem solve and make sound decisions.

Critical thinking involves looking closely and carefully at a problem or opportunity from different points of view. This allows you to think more creatively and consider where you might meet resistance, face additional costs or miss deadlines.

Having a good process for approaching problems can help you be a confident problem solver. There are four basic steps:

  • Defining the problem
  • Generating alternatives
  • Evaluating and selecting alternatives
  • Implementing solutions

A valued employee

As with anything, practice make perfect. Improve your approach to problem solving and critical thinking to build a reputation as someone who knows how to handle tough situations in a positive way. Look for opportunities to be helpful and take on responsibilities. Practice these skills to become a valued member of any team or organization.

Are you WorkReady!? Click here to find a workshop near you.