As a Consultant of Soft Skill Training Program in a reputable Firm of Talent Management Solutions in Pakistan, I have infinitely heard HR executives say that soft skills is all fun and games, and has no impact on personal growth in the long run.
I rest my case in the start by quoting a Study by Stanford Research Institute and the Carnegie Mellon Foundation on Fortune 500 CEO’s that 75% of long term job successes depended on people skills, and only 25% on technical skills.
We are living in an era of constant change. Because businesses are becoming are becoming less dictatorial, and more social, the understanding and value of soft skills to an organization is growing daily. According to latest research, 96% of the new jobs in developing countries will be in service related fields where dealing with customers would be an art. It would be more than just having a smile on your face; people will have to develop the state of mind, of welcoming people, which will eventually be developed by soft skill trainings.
The more I look at the distinguishing traits of people who are advancing their careers, the more convinced I am that soft skills are more important today than ever before.
“Soft Skills” is a term relating to a collection of personal, positive attributes, and competencies, that enhances your relationships, job performance, and value to the market.
Soft Skills include your ability to listen well, communicate effectively, be positive, handle conflict, accept responsibility, show respect, build trust, work well with others, manage time effectively, accept criticism, work under pressure, be likeable, and demonstrate good manners.
“Hard Skills” are specific trainable abilities necessary to carry out the professional or technical requirements of a job or occupation.
Hard Skills would include knowledge, machine operation, computer procedures, safety standards, financial systems, technical analysis, and sales administration. Unlike soft skills, hard skills are typically easy to observe, quantify, and measure.
Let me give you an example of the two kinds of skills. I hope you are a fan of Cricket. If that is the case, you will agree with me that, watching Pakistani cricketer Yonus Khan, or Misbah ul Haq bat will make you relaxed and confident in the battling lineup of the nation. The calmness they bring into the play, the constant smile they have on their face, the amount of respect the players give because of the values they depict, their ethics and morals towards lie, and towards their passion, is commendable.
They might not be as big as Inzamam-ul-Haq in runs scored or statistics, but are definitely more loved and respected by the crowd.
Developing interpersonal skills affect all of your life – far beyond your career.
- Your relationship with your spouse, children, and friends will deepen.
- You will attract like-minded people into your life.
- You will gain people’s respect and admiration.
- Your example will teach others how they can be more successful.
- You will feel that you have more control of your life.
In addition to the long list of ways your life will be enhanced, you will be making this World a better place. Never underestimate the impact your positive example can have on people’s lives, both directly and indirectly.
The great thing about building your soft skills is that you can acquire them on your own. Regardless of your background, gender, or education, developing your soft skills will make you stand out from the crowd in whatever you choose to do.
Let’s start with three things:
- Start with doing small stuff; helping someone, understanding their needs, listen to them, work according to their directions.
- Become a keen observer of others. If Salman got the promotion over Jaffer, identify the reasons. When you are attracted to someone, ask yourself why. When you begin to trust someone, pinpoint the reasons. If you received excellent service from someone, think about what this person did that impressed you. There is a lot you can learn by observing others.
- Start living in a state of awareness. Start making decisions and watch the impact on other people. Positive change begins with awareness.
To advance your life personally or professionally, you must put an emphasis on developing your soft skills.