Details. Details. Details. Can’t emphasize this enough. A few of my acquaintances who have just recently graduated are wondering why getting a job suddenly became so tough compared to how graduates from last year had it. Well, for one, the global economy is really shot. Most multinationals (the biggest employers in the country) have frozen their hiring leaving a lot more people to compete with a few positions across industries.

However, one X factors to getting jobs is how an applicant presents himself or herself. Here’s a reality that you really have to consider. You might be good and quite competent, however, the odds are that there are other good people around, probably just as good or even better than you. Don’t let your school, degree, or honors be a guarantee that you’re the fastest gun in the west and that you have to be paid top dollar.

With the financial crisis sending even the best people in other industries back to the job market, companies can hire people who have three times the knowledge and experience at the say pay grade. At the end of the day, the it’s the person who can make compromises and position himself or herself as of the most and best value to the company who will get the job.

This applies to different contexts too. Competition in any industry is ruthless. Consultants and businesses jockeying for the same target client need to pay attention to the . You might have all the answers to their questions and have full confidence that your skills will deliver the solutions they need. However, if the other party can make the target client feel more valued through human touch (steak and strippers?), guess who’ll land the business?

If you happen to watch The Office (the US version, in this example), you might observe that, despite Michael (Steve Carrel’s character) being bumbling management idiot, the guy can sell. And it’s primarily because he knows what makes people tick. Never mind if he doesn’t know about business models and management strategies.

The ideal, therefore is to have the sharpest mind with a human touch.

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