Airflow, also known as Apache Airflow, is a robust, open-source platform that enables developers to programmatically create, schedule, and monitor workflows. Often used by data engineers, Airflow is valuable in many data-related fields as it helps streamline the process of managing and organizing large amounts of data, ensuring that the right tasks are executed in the correct order and at the right time.

Proficiency in Airflow means one can design systems to automate, monitor, and provide alerts on pipeline statuses, such as successful completions or system issues, resulting in efficient and reliable data pipelines. Companies looking for Airflow skills are usually seeking individuals adept at handling complex data flows, keen attention to detail, and ability to build, optimize, and manage vast amounts of data effectively.

When it comes to related skills, a strong grounding in Python programming language is fundamental to using and mastering Airflow, as Python is what Airflow runs on. Understanding basic data engineering concepts is also essential as Airflow is often used to automate data pipelines. Skills such as working with databases and SQL, knowing how to schedule and automate tasks, and understanding orchestration are also foundational.

Since Airflow involves managing data workflows, knowledge of other data pipeline tools like Luigi, Oozie, or Pentaho could come in handy. Familiarity with containerization/deployment technologies such as Docker or Kubernetes, and experience working with distributed data processing platforms like Apache Hadoop or Apache Spark will be beneficial, as organizations commonly use these technologies in tandem with Airflow. Similarly, understanding of cloud platforms like AWS, GCP, or Azure can further strengthen one's competence with Airflow, as these platforms often serve as the infrastructure where Airflow runs.

Airflow is a highly sought-after skill in roles such as Data Engineer, Data Scientist, and DevOps Engineer but can be beneficial for a wide array of technical roles. Having Airflow in your repertoire of skills could significantly increase your appeal to employers in the tech and data industry.