10 Personal Qualities To Mention in Your CV

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 30 August 2021

Writing a CV highlighting your personal qualities can help you make a stronger impression on your potential employer. Including your personal attributes in your CV gives your employer a better sense of what you would be like as an employee and how you would work as part of a team. Showcasing strong personal qualities can reassure employers that you're not only technically qualified for the role but that your personality and way of working would add value to the company. In this article, we explain what personal qualities are and highlight examples of qualities to mention in your CV.

What are personal qualities on a CV?

Personal qualities on a CV are the characteristics or personality traits you include on your CV that describe what you're like as a person. Personal qualities can be gained and developed through life experience, and they directly influence how you function at work and on a team.

As well as looking at your technical skills and experience, employers pay attention to the personal traits you highlight on your CV. While employers need to be sure that you are technically qualified for the role, they also want to feel confident that you would work well with others and that your personality traits would make you a valuable member of the team. Highlighting the right personal attributes can demonstrate to employers that you're a well-rounded candidate that can effectively handle group dynamics and situations involving teamwork, problem-solving and relationship building.

Examples of personal qualities to mention in your CV

Here are 10 personal qualities to highlight in your CV, along with related skills or accomplishments:

1. Interpersonal skills

Interpersonal skills refer to qualities that help you communicate with and work well with others. This includes listening actively, understanding the needs of others, managing your emotions and interpreting non-verbal communication such as body language. Many work environments require or encourage collaboration and teamwork, and having strong interpersonal skills shows that you can handle social interactions effectively and contribute to a positive work environment. Employers also value this quality as it implies that you can build strong relationships and be compatible with your colleagues and with their clients.

Regardless of the type of role you're applying for, demonstrating that you can communicate effectively and work well with others can help you make a good impression. You can highlight your interpersonal skills by mentioning specific examples of collaborating with others to achieve positive results, resolve team conflicts or build positive and meaningful relationships.

Read more: Interpersonal Skills: Definitions and Examples

2. Initiative

Having initiative means that you can take action independently without having to be told what to do. A person that shows initiative has the confidence to be the first person to respond to a potential opportunity or crisis rather than relying on others to assume responsibility.

Initiative is a highly valued quality as it shows that you're resourceful, proactive and independent. Taking the initiative also means that you're able to come up with creative solutions on your own, that you trust your instincts and that you're not afraid to make mistakes to find out what works. You can demonstrate that you have initiative on your CV by mentioning projects or ideas that were implemented because of your input or by describing a situation in which you identified problems and suggested improvements that helped the company achieve its goals.

3. Drive and determination

Employers look for driven and determined candidates, which means that they are motivated and show enthusiasm for their work. Having drive and determination indicates that you are goal-oriented and willing to invest a lot of effort into your work to accomplish your objectives and overcome challenges. Candidates who possess this quality are highly valued as they tend to enjoy their jobs and contribute to a productive and positive environment by showing passion and dedication for their work.

To highlight your drive and determination in your CV, you can use keywords such as 'ambitious', 'passionate' and 'motivated' when describing your previous roles and achievements.

4. Willingness to learn

Being willing to learn new skills shows that you're motivated to develop yourself and grow in your career. Demonstrating your willingness to learn can let employers know that you are coachable and motivated to take on new challenges to become as qualified and proficient in your role as possible.

You can convey your willingness to learn by highlighting any self-taught experience or additional training and certifications you pursued as part of your self-development efforts. You can also provide examples of how these learning experiences helped you achieve success in past roles to show employers that you have a growth mindset which you can apply in your future role.

Read more: 10 Valuable Soft Skills That You Need to Succeed in Your Career

5. Attention to detail

Attention to detail refers to your ability to complete tasks accurately and thoroughly for all areas involved. Being detail-oriented is an important quality as it suggests that you are attentive, efficient and productive. Companies value strong attention to detail in candidates as it shows that they can produce high-quality work while minimising the likelihood of errors.

Having strong attention to detail is particularly important if your responsibilities involve tasks such as proofreading, editing, working with numbers or creative work such as graphic design. To demonstrate this quality on your CV, you can mention situations when you made use of your analytical and observational skills to identify errors and provide a solution.

6. Teamwork skills

Teamwork skills have to do with your ability to work with others in a team. This includes how you handle tasks such as collaboration, resolving group conflicts and sharing responsibilities. Working harmoniously in a team environment is an essential skill as almost every job involves working with other people to achieve common goals and objectives.

You can showcase your skills as a strong team player in your CV by mentioning specific examples of when you collaborated with other teammates and by highlighting the accomplishments you achieved as a member of that team.

7. Leadership skills

Leadership is a valuable quality to have, even for people who aren't in a management position. Leadership consists of a variety of skills such as communication, organisation, decision-making and coaching. Effective leaders can drive the company's mission and goals forward while motivating other team members to deliver their best work. Employers value candidates with strong leadership and organisational skills as they help contribute to a productive and efficient work environment and play an important role in improving the company's overall performance.

The best way to demonstrate your leadership qualities in your CV is to mention specific accomplishments of your team and describe how your guidance and leadership helped achieve these goals. If relevant, you can also refer to instances when you trained, coached or mentored others.

Read more: Top 9 Leadership Skills to Develop

8. Problem-solving skills

Problem-solving abilities allow you to identify problems and solve them efficiently and effectively. Being a good problem solver allows you to understand and analyse problems and develop creative and strategic solutions, even with limited resources available.

Businesses can encounter problems and unexpected challenges at any time, which is why employers strongly value people who show that they can resolve problems effectively. A good way to showcase your problem-solving skills is to highlight situations when you faced an issue or obstacle at work and managed to develop an effective solution, either independently or as a team.

Read more: Problem Solving Skills: Definitions and Examples

9. Ability to work under pressure

Working under pressure means that you can remain calm and carry out your tasks efficiently during high-pressure situations. For instance, when expectations change or things don't go according to plan. In many types of roles, you may experience demanding situations at work where you have to make quick decisions and remain focused while carrying out your tasks to a high standard.

This is a desirable quality as employers value people who can handle their emotions effectively and maintain peace and productivity in the workplace regardless of the circumstances. You can show prospective employers that you're able to handle pressure by mentioning your experiences working in a fast-paced environment which may have involved responsibilities such as managing complaints, dealing with last-minute changes or meeting tight deadlines.

10. Flexibility

Being flexible refers to your ability to effectively adapt to change when needed. Flexibility is important because industries and roles are constantly changing due to factors such as new technology, competition, and changing customer expectations. Successful companies need to adapt and thrive when faced with new and unfamiliar situations and circumstances.

Showing that you're flexible and adaptable can let employers know that you're reliable, responsible and can work successfully in fast-changing and dynamic work environments. Employers may also be impressed if you can show that you can handle changes with a positive attitude. You can demonstrate flexibility in your CV by mentioning times when you successfully handled new projects or responsibilities that were outside your usual area of expertise, adjusted your schedule to accommodate changes, or when you assisted colleagues with tasks that are unfamiliar to you.

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