Public health professionals play an important role in the overall health and well-being of the community. You will find opportunities in a variety of settings including government agencies, hospitals, educational and research institutions as well as nonprofit organizations. Your job profile and salary package will depend on a several factors such as:
- Your qualification and experience
- Type of organization
- Scope of work
- Size of the employer
Irrespective of the work and position, all public health employers expect some core competencies from their prospective employees. 10 qualities and skills public health employers want from you include:
#1 Communication skills (verbal & written)
Communication skills are crucial for your success as a public health professional. Most organizations employ public health professionals to design, develop and implement health education programs and support services for their members. Strong communication skills will help you understand the core values of your employees and interact efficiently with the members.
#2 Strong work ethic
A strong work ethic will help you make the best of the situation and deliver best results under the circumstances. Employees wish to employ professionals who are responsible and work hard to achieve the ultimate goal of the organization.
#3 Teamwork skills
Public health professionals cannot work in isolation. It is practically impossible to implement programs independently. You collaborate with other staff members such as social workers, healthcare professionals and the managers for the success of your program.
Most employers expect their public health professionals to be self-starters. You should take the initiative and a proactive approach to organize the public health programs and solve everyday problems associated with them.
#5 Interpersonal skills
Interpersonal skills are essential for your success at any organization. A healthy relationship with management, colleagues and clients is the basis of a successful program.
#6 Problem-solving skills
The implementation of a public health initiative is associated with a variety of problems including budgeting, operation, and customer satisfaction. You must demonstrate good problem-solving skills which will help overcome these issues.
#7 Analytical skills
Analytical skills are closely linked to your ability to manage day-to-day responsibilities related to the project and problem-solving skills. Your employers expect you to analyze the situations and act as per the norms of the organization.
The field of public health is changing constantly. You should work proactively to keep track of current developments in the field and adapt or change your program accordingly. You should also accommodate the feedbacks and requirements of the clients. Some employers may also be looking for flexible schedules or hours of work.
#9 Computer skills
Basic computer skills such as MS Office and the Internet are important in today’s era of technology.
#10 Technical skills
Your ultimate success as a public health professional will depend on your technical skills specifically related to your field, and your ability to implement your education in a real world scenario. It is your responsibility to demonstrate how your technical knowledge will help the prospective employers achieve their organizational goals.
- U.S. News and World Report – http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/2010/10/12/what-job-interviewers-are-really-looking-for
- Binghamton University – http://www2.binghamton.edu/career-development-center/quick-reference-guides/transferable-skills.pdf