Top Communication & Collaboration Skills Employers Look For in 2023

Strong collaboration and communication skills are necessary for today’s fast-paced job market. After all, employers are looking for candidates who work effectively on remote or hybrid teams, express themselves clearly, and work well with their colleagues to achieve company goals. So, in addition to honing strong technical skills, job seekers should focus on showcasing their soft skills – such as their ability to think critically, communicate effectively, and be a team player. In this article. we will explore crucial soft skills employers are looking for in 2023 and tips for job candidates to hone those skills. Keep reading!

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Top Skills Employers Look for in Job Candidates

When it comes to filling a job position, hiring managers and company leaders look for a variety of qualities in candidates. The essential skills employers are looking for in 2023 include:

  • Adaptability: Employers seek candidates who can adapt well to the existing work environment and become an integral part of the team. 
  • Flexibility: Employers often need employees who can pivot and re-prioritize tasks as company goals shift.
  • Problem-Solving Skills: Team members who can solve problems individually and collaboratively are crucial to many companies.
  • Accountability: Companies often desire candidates who exhibit self-motivation and the ability to take accountability. 
  • Positive Attitude: Hiring managers search for employees who bring a can-do attitude to the team. 
  • Management Skills: Depending on the role one is hiring for, companies may also look for candidates who have prior experience in a leadership role or who they believe can rise to the occasion. 
  • Teamwork Skills & Experience: Employers want candidates who work well on teams and who can collaborate using digital tools.
  • Communication Skills: Candidates who can communicate clearly and concisely with colleagues are integral to the success of many companies. 

Overall, companies want candidates who can contribute to the success of the team, generate innovative solutions, and work collaboratively to meet deadlines and goals. 

a hiring manager and job candidate shake hands

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Best Practices to Improve Team Collaboration 

Teamwork and collaboration skills are imperative. So, it’s important that job seekers take the time to sharpen these skills. Here are some best practices hiring managers or employees can implement to improve collaboration on remote or hybrid teams. 

  • Work on communication. In order to work effectively as a team, it is imperative that everyone has strong communication skills.
  • Be respectful of colleagues. Respect and trust are at the foundation of great team collaboration.
  • Define responsibilities when working on group projects. Establishing clear roles helps to minimize confusion and conflict, as well as, avoid unnecessary duplication of tasks.
  • Establish a clear objective. Defining clear goals and objectives helps to keep everyone on the same page and working toward solving the same issue.
  • Use digital tools to enhance collaboration. Technology can be used to streamline communication, manage deadlines, and share documents during collaborative projects.
  • Encourage constructive criticism. Feedback is a critical part of the collaboration process. 

By following these best practices, employees can hone stronger teamwork skills and begin to work more productively with others. 

two colleagues shake hands and smile at each other while standing in a office with large glass windows

Essential Tips to Practice Effective Communication

In addition to collaboration, communication is extremely important. Here are some ways you can communicate more effectively:

  • Practice active listening and ask clarifying questions. Remember, when it comes to communicating effectively, listening is just as important as expressing oneself. 
  • Express empathy for fellow employees. When working on collaboratively projects, try to see things from the other person’s perspective. Doing so will help you show empathy – a critical part of successful team collaboration.
  • Communicate concisely. Be concise and as clear as possible, especially when it comes to written communication. One way to achieve concise and effective communication is to use simple language, avoid colloquialisms, and proofread the text before hitting the send button.
  • Speak in team meetings. Show that you are actively listening by participating in group discussions and sharing your ideas and feedback on company issues. 
  • Learn conflict management. Personalities clash from time to time. However, it is imperative that one learns to resolve conflicts constructively and diplomatically. 
  • Participate in group activities. If your company actively tries to engage employees in group activities, do your best to show your enthusiasm by participating. Doing so can help build relationships among team members and improve how folks communicate within the team.

By implementing these tips regularly, there is no doubt that you can sharpen your communication skills. 

a team of three employees walk up the stairs together and converse among each other

Team Building Exercises to Foster Collaboration Among Remote & Hybrid Employees

Searching for team-building activities to foster successful communication and collaboration among colleagues? Just keep reading. Here are some ideas for team-building exercises you can try today.

Hybrid Employees

Below, you will find a list of activities that work best with hybrid teams or those that occupy a traditional office environment. 

  • Team Volunteering: Get the entire team engaged in volunteer work. For instance, colleagues can volunteer at animal or homeless shelters, soup kitchens, or environmental organizations.
  • Board Games: Play games that require folks to practice critical thinking and collaboration skills.
  • Role Play: Facilitate exercises that empower employees to assume different roles and work together towards solving a common problem.
  • Obstacle Course: Organize an outdoor outing that features an obstacle course that requires colleagues to work together.
  • Escape Room: Head to an escape room or set up one in the office. Then challenge employees to work together to solve riddles, and puzzles, and ultimately escape. 

Remote Employees

  • Virtual Happy Hour: Gather the group together over Zoom and toast to a successful project or lucrative quarter.
  • Online Book Club: Find common ground by reading books and discussing them as a group. 
  • Virtual Workshops and Courses: Attend virtual workshops to hone new skills and create commonalities among colleagues. 
  • Online Trivia: Engage in an interactive activity by participating in online trivia matches with the whole team.
  • Virtual Fitness Challenge: Encourage folks to take better care of their health and engage in some friendly competition by organizing a virtual fitness challenge (like a 30-day cardio or yoga challenge for instance). 


Communication, collaboration, and emotional intelligence are integral to successful teamwork. So, it’s imperative that candidates work toward developing strong soft skills and embracing new technologies. After all, employers are looking for those whose qualities exceed the technical skills listed on a resume.