There’s no denying – anyone who works in business has their work cut out from them. It can even be brutal at times, which is why it’s essential to hone your skills and make sure you’ll come out on top in order to progress higher and higher. If you’re looking for what sort of skills you’ll need to make your mark and achieve great things, you can find them below.


Business isn’t always a steady, predictable way to make money – most of the time, it takes a lot of risks to push a business forward and make a good profit. Someone who’s afraid to take risks won’t be able to put themselves out there and will always be held back by fear – so it’s important to show that you’re willing to put yourself (and even others) on the line if it means big things for you and the business. However, it’s important to not come across as careless with money – after all, the most important thing in a business is making a profit.

Proving you’re a risk-taker isn’t too difficult – you can rely on past experience of times where you’ve made a decision that could have put you in jeopardy but paid out big time. You could also take on adventurous experiences, or take on an exciting hobby – these show you’re willing to put yourself outside of your comfort zone and take on challenges and risks.


You can be as charming, as smart, or as bold as you like – if you don’t know your stuff, then you’re going to struggle to be successful in business. It’s important to make sure you know your trade inside out and can deal with complicated information quickly and efficiently. You don’t just want to be knowledgeable about your trade though – it’s important to be knowledgeable about the business you work in and what kind of clients/audience they work with, it’s important to be knowledgeable about business as a whole and know how to calculate risks, and it’s important to be knowledgeable about other competing businesses so you can be one step ahead.

Gaining knowledge is an easy but long process. You’ll need to do lots of research into the business and get to know it as you work – don’t dismiss the small things but store them away for later use. To go the extra mile, taking a qualification can really put you ahead of the game and not just give you the knowledge you need to survive, but the knowledge you need to exceed expectations. Qualifications like this MBA online from Aston University are specifically designed to help you learn the business inside out, giving you the tools to hit the ground running.

Good Communicator

One of the most important skills you’ll need in life to get ahead is communication. You need to be able to communicate well with others in order to work effectively, especially in business – after all, people are the centre of your trade, and you want to make sure things go as smoothly as possible. Being a good communicator means knowing how to be persuasive and charming, as well as having an open, friendly approach, but also knowing how to understand and listen to people. Your client may come in with a mixed message of what they want, and it’s up to you to determine the best approach for them – so learn how to read body language and faces, hints in vocal expression, and remember to take in every word they’re saying. You may even want to practice reflective listening – although this is often used in conflict resolution, it can be a great way of ensuring you understand perfectly what your client is after.

Communication is also essential in your team – even if you’re looking to eventually be the head of a specific team or business, you need to work well with people at your own level, as well as people below you. A sign of a good boss is one who listens and works alongside the employees, so don’t lose sight of others in your own journey for success.

In order to improve your communication, as well as taking on reflective listening, you could opt for a course on communication. There are hundreds of courses online offering you guidance on how to communicate better – and if you’re strapped for cash, YouTube can be a great source!

If you’re looking to improve your listening skills, consider volunteering for a talking charity such as Samaritans. This can help improve your understanding of others, as well as offer you a valuable experience that will help you develop yourself and hopefully support others along the way.

Stand Out

In business, it’s not enough to just be good at what you do – you have to be good at what you don’t do, as well. As much as you should do your job well, it’s also expected that you’ll perform your tasks in a decent manner, but to really push yourself forward, you should be doing extra tasks and making your name known within the business. Often, the best way to get noticed is to shout, so make sure your actions shout loud and clear to those in higher positions.

There are many ways you can do this – take on extra overtime, make some big sales, bag some new clients, present new business ideas and ventures to your supervisors. If you can get yourself in the news or media, this is even better – businesses love a big game, and it helps if you’re memorable in some way. Another great way is to take any opportunities by the reigns – if there’s an offer for an employee to organise something, take it! Not only will you prove yourself as hard-working, but your efforts will be seen, and your achievements will fall outside of expectations, meaning you’re bound to make some great impressions.

Remember – it takes more than a day to reach the top, so be patient, work on improving yourself, and keep fighting for that number one spot.