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  • Goutham Ravikumar

Soft Skills - The Introduction

I’m sure excitement have bought you here! You are excited or curious to know what exactly are these soft skills? How would they help us in being successful? We have heard of people talk about interpersonal skills, communication skills, various other levels of soft skills etc. Well, here this blog is a small try to explain what exactly it is!

Meaning: Soft skills, is most commonly defined as the non-technical skills that will enable us to interact with great efficiency and harmoniously with others. These soft skills are vital to the organisations and can bring the much required impact on various other important factors such as the culture, mindsets, leadership, attitudes and behaviours.

In other words, Soft skills speaks about the personality traits, behaviour of an individual, and other interpersonal skills that we use the most and are important to interact with other people. At the workplace, theses soft skills will actually represent our ability to work effectively with others, and this is the main reason that the employees only look at candidates who are well versed in these types of skills.

Soft skills are usually not restricted to specific professions, they would rather also relate to our personalities as they are highly transferable skills and make a big difference when compared to others. Although they’re less tangible than hard skills, it is recommended to have them being inculcated and learnt, and the employers would actually value any qualifications that one poses to have that demonstrate a willingness to improve them (soft skills).

Some of the fundamental and very important soft skills at the workplace includes that of the creativity, persuasion, emotional intelligence, and collaboration.

Why are the soft skills so very important?

Soft skills are so very important to the employers, so much so that a survey conducted in the year 2018 by LinkedIn found out that 57% of the senior leaders thought that soft skills were more important than any other hard skills.

Effective communication is crucial under high stress, ability to empathise or encourage a team member who might be struggling because of various reasons, and working collaboratively to meet a deadline all of these are some of the examples of soft skills which carry the highest importance irrespective of the type of organisation.

Soft skills are something that can represent so many abilities that can’t be replicated even by the Artificial Intelligence (AI), which is a great sign and this will only increase their importance in the future.

Understanding what exactly is soft skills and by discovering as to how you can develop your soft skills, one can strengthen their CV or resume as well which is also equally important and is useful if you’re thinking about switching roles or career domains.

How do the organisations facilitate on the re-skilling?

Developing the much required soft skills and also ensuring that the employees are in the right space, and in turn organisations get what it deserves, are all considered as a perfect set up for success which though is not as simple as it pops out in a training video.

One of the most important step is Assessment. Reshaping and re-sizing the soft skill gap was always proved to be particularly challenging, because they typically lack systematic evaluation and certification mechanisms. HR departments in particular must be equipped with a particular framework which only speaks about the soft skills and defines their respective evaluation criteria.

For an effective re-skilling it requires a lot of training which would be a hybrid mixture of the traditional & nontraditional ways of teaching which includes the training, and digital courses along with job aids, and nontraditional methods includes the peer coaching. One such example is a retail giant company that has distributed as many as 17,000 virtual reality headsets which helps the employees face the unfamiliar situations, such as the first Black Friday sales, and is also training its employees in new technologies, other required soft skills and compliances.

Sometimes, people usually operate based on incentives - they do the work and get rewarded for the same and so to encourage people to not only begin their journey in the field of soft skill learning but also to continue with it, rewards and incentives are critical and plays a very very important role.

Looking at the importance and the requirement of soft skills now and also in the coming future, training current employees alone is not enough but also it is crucial to ensure that new talent that is coming in the door is also ready with such skills which are most critical right from the day one.

How to develop Soft Skills at the workplace?

Like we already discussed, recruiting employees are already being equipped with a bunch of soft skills is like an icing on the cake. It is said so because it helps to showcase the hard skills that we posses in a more and more attractive and lucrative manner. Below are some of the ways to develop such skills at workplace:

  • It is important to develop a learning mindset at the workplace

  • Soft skills can be developed by understanding & developing the knowledge

  • Provide opportunities to everyone

  • Right feedback at the right time

These are not all but just some of the practices which comes handy for developing the soft skills at the workplace.

What are some of the topics for Soft skills training at workplace

  • Leadership & Communication Skills

  • Critical Thinking

  • Listening skills

  • Teamwork & Adaptability

  • Punctuality

I can tell you these are just some of the wide range of topics involved in soft skills. We will look into each of it in detail in our upcoming blogs. We at Infimind Consultants provide soft skills training to working professionals, Institutions & also companies. We are always committed to provide such training which helps them to achieve, tell and gain what they want.

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