You have probably heard of soft and hard skills, but did you know that employers are increasingly looking to hire people who demonstrate strong soft skills (personal qualities and traits that impact how you work) on top of the required hard skills (job-related competencies and abilities that are necessary to complete a specific job or work)?
Below we list 5 of the top soft skills to include in your resume that can be applied to almost any job and any resume:
Almost no matter the job, demonstrating strong communication skills either written, verbal or increasingly, both, are integral to cementing your success within an organization. Be it the ability to communicate with colleagues, managers, clients, members of the public etc, communication skills are crucial for effective collaboration and conveying ideas. Moreover, strong communication skills will not only help with your own professional development but also form part of the reason an organization is able to drive growth and succeed against their competitors.
Every job involves problem solving, although with some roles it is more front and center and can almost be considered as a hard skill, however even if in a less obvious way, every job has been improved by someone solving an inherent problem within it. Being able to thinking about ways to increase productivity, efficiency or the working conditions of you and others is imperative to the success of a business. Employers always value job seekers and employers who can analyze situations and find creative solutions.
Employers are reporting that time management is becoming an increasing issue amongst the workforce so being able to impress employers with the ability to manage yourself and your deadlines is highly valued. Time management doesn’t mean completing a task when in a given period dictated by a manager. Proper time management is the ability to work out whether the timeframe to complete a given task is realistic or not and reporting back your thoughts to manage expectations which in turn will drive an expected outcome. Efficiently managing tasks and deadlines is essential for company productivity and is in great demand.
A soft skill that is not talked about as often as it should be is that of emotional intelligence. Being able to recognizing and manage your emotions as well as those of others leads to increased cohesion and productivity across the workplace. Active listening plays an important role in this, and paying full attention to others to gain a greater understanding of their perspective is crucial to building a relationship with your colleagues, managers, customers or clients. The more you can understand an individual, the more you are able to solve their problems, emotional intelligence is a crucial skill to learn and demonstrate.
In an increasingly changing world, brought about by the advancement of technology, being open to change and learning new skills is going to be looked on very positively by employers. The World Economic Forum estimates that by 2025, technology will create at least 12 million more jobs than it removes from the marketplace. This is therefore a strong sign that automation is a net positive for the employment market. However, being able to adapt to new technologies, ways of working and generally adjusting to evolving circumstances in the workplace is crucial to career development.
If you are able to master or demonstrate the soft skills listed above, it will go a long way in helping to secure your next job or promotion!