All of us are tomorrow’s workers. We aim to get the best jobs and have the best performance at our workplaces. If I say you that the development of specific skills can make you successful in any field, would you believe me?
There are universal skills that can make you stand out of the crowd and make you the best in your field. These are soft skills. Have you ever heard about this term before? Probably yes, because nowadays soft skills is a very popular concept, since it serves as guarantee of success in education, work and even human relationships.
Of course, you need the technical knowledge or ‘hard’ skills in order to get a certain job. Hard skills of an English teacher is knowledge of English language and for a driver is knowledge of traffic rules and an ability to drive. But obtaining hard skills makes you only an average worker, not a high achiever. However, you can easily become an outstanding worker by gaining assets such as soft skills.
Soft skills can be defined as “a broad set of skills, competencies, behaviors, attitudes, and personal qualities that enable people to effectively navigate their environment, work well with others, perform well, and achieve their goals”(Lippman, Ryberg, Carney & Moore, 2015, p. 4). In other words, soft skills indicate our interactions with other people and our attitude to our life and jobs. Although soft skills are not easily tangible and measurable, researchers have identified many constituents of it.
According to Lippman et. al., five kinds of so called soft skills are most important for workforce success: social skills, communication, higher-order thinking, self-control and self-concept.
- Social skills mean being able to get on well with other people depending on situation and context, effectively avoid and solve conflicts.
- Communicative skills imply an ability to deliver ideas and thoughts in a clear and advanced way both in oral and written form.
- Higher-order thinking comprises abilities to think critically, solve problems and make decisions.
- Self-control and 5. self-concept, in turn, are skills that help people to control their emotions and will, have an adequate self-esteem and dignity.
Now being equipped by the information about the main soft skills ensuring you a success in any workplace, you are ready to work on yourself. The great thing about any type of soft skills is that they are all malleable, so you can train and improve any asset you like. There is only a matter of time, since, as it was written before, it is not easy to measure soft skills. However, with an earnest desire to succeed nothing is impossible!
Lippman, L., Ryberg, R., Carney, R., & Moore, K. (2015). Workforce connections: Key “soft skills” to foster youth workforce success: toward a consensus across fields”. Child trends.
Photo credits: http://blog.psoda.com/five-soft-skills-to-aid-your-project-management-career/