Every job post has a list of required skills necessary for the job – these skills are considered hard skills. These can be a college degree requirement, a special certification, technical knowledge in a software program, or a number of years of experience in that specific field.
Hard skills can often be found written right on your resume. In fact, your level of soft skills is what’ll actually get you to rise up to more coveted (and high-paying) leadership positions.
However, there is another set of skills, called soft skills, that employers are expecting potential hirees to have.
So what are soft skills?
According to The Balance Careers, soft skills are non-technical skills that relate to how you work. They include how you interact with colleagues, how you solve problems, and how you manage your work.
Many of these skills are directly related to communication. In our e-course The Art Of Communication, we talk about effective communication and touch on many of these soft skills employers want you to have.
LinkedIn has compiled a list of the top 5 soft skills that employers find most important for career success.
No matter what type of position you have or are hoping to have, employers want you to be creative. Technology is changing so quickly and adaptations to workflows are happening at lightning speed. Creativity is simply a must-have trait. It not only allows you to think outside the box, but it also allows you to think big picture.
Employers want to see that you can come up with new ideas and that you are able to think outside of the box. Creativity is also a mindset that you can have. Being comfortable with new ideas is one way to incorporate creativity into your mindset. Brainstorming ideas with colleagues is another way to incorporate creativity into your routine.
Creativity will look different for every career. Start to think about ways that you can be creative within your current role or in the role that you hope to have.
💡We recommend the e-course “The Five-Step Creative Process Course” to expand your creative thinking.
Are you the type of person who thinks about only your side of the argument?
The soft skill of persuasion asks you to think about your idea from every angle.
If you are able to think about all of the different ways that your idea can be criticized and then come up with ideas to negate the criticisms, you will be much more likely to persuade someone to choose your idea.
The art of persuasion is very similar to how an attorney prepares for a court case. You must look at all sides and think from the other side’s point of view.
Another aspect of persuasion is knowing your audience. Understanding how your audience ingests information will help you in your delivery. For example, if your co-worker doesn’t read emails all the way through, it is probably not a great idea to persuade them via lengthy emails. On the other hand, if you are particularly good at telling stories and using expressive body language techniques – persuading someone when they can see you and you in person (or on video) might be most effective.
💡 We recommend this audio course: “Key Psychological Principles for Ethical Persuasion” to learn how to become more persuasive in all situations.
The thought of group projects can either make you super excited or make you dread going to work. Either way, you are most likely going to have to collaborate with someone during your working career at some point.
One of the biggest reasons many people dread collaboration is that they’ve had bad experiences. For example, expectations aren’t defined from the beginning and everyone is confused and disorganized. Instead of dreading your next collaboration – be the leader and define what each person is responsible for right away. Be proactive!
The sooner you do this, the more likely everyone will feel more clear on what they need to do. It can be very difficult to figure out how to collaborate and be seen during this new remote working environment. In our LinkedIn Learning e-course, Building Your Visibility Online As A Remote Leader, our CEO Jessica Chen talks about how to maintain those relationships from afar and you will learn how to be seen and how to navigate collaborations within your team.
Another big aspect of collaboration is listening. If you’ve taken the time to assign roles to each person within the group – listening to each member to ensure they understand their duties will make it so it’s much easier for everyone to collaborate and understand each other.
Change is inevitable. And whether you want to or not, you will have to adapt to whatever changes take place. The soft skill of adaptability is more about your willingness to change rather than changing itself.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- When things change, are you able to keep your cool?
- Do you invite alternative outcomes for a project?
- Are you willing to try out different ways of doing something?
- Can you see the bright side of change?
- How can you adopt a growth mindset vs. fixed mindset?
The more you allow yourself to get into the mindset of adaptability the more easily it will come to you.
💡 We recommend the course: “Leading with a Growth Mindset” to help you get into a productive mindset for all working situations.
5. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
Emotional Intelligence is a buzz phrase that has become mainstream. It’s for good reason. Research has shown having high and strong emotional intelligence is a huge part of career and personal success.
Being self-aware, listening to another person’s perspective, and having empathy are all key aspects of emotional intelligence.
If you have strong emotional intelligence you will be able to think creatively, be better at persuasion, excel at collaboration and be comfortable adapting to any situation.
💡 We recommend the e-course: “Developing Emotional Intelligence” to better understand how you can grow this area and better work with your team and leadership.
Do you want to get better at these top five soft skills? Join our private communications group where you can work with our Soulcast Media team on your communications every month!
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