Words, Ideas, Stuff
Some ideas and thoughts, captured with the view to help you.
Firstly, what are soft and hard skills?
Hard skills – specific knowledge or ability, clear, defined, understood by many, can be learned easily through training or studying.
Soft skills – subjective, change, context dependant, harder to clearly define, learn the concepts and then develop the skills through ‘doing’, more about EQ and your own behaviour.
Research conducted by Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation and Stanford Research Center has concluded that 85% of job success comes from having well-developed soft and people skills, and only 15% of on-the-job success actually comes from technical skills and knowledge (which are the hard skills. You need the hard skills to get your application through to ‘pass go’ and get to the interview stage, as many recruiters and HR managers will be scanning for specific skills, experience and education – all focused on hard skills.
Great quote “While hard skills may get your foot in the door, soft skills will keep you there”
Hard skills give you the basis to take on specific roles and tasks, the soft skills are the ones that differentiate you from the crowd. Its these skills that boost your leadership and relationship building capability, and therefore often lead to high performance. Through formal education and training, the focus will be on building those tangible hard skills but the real potential is to develop and refine your soft skills.
Forbes reports on a study undertaken on 260 employers (including Chevron and IBM) and found the following five soft skills to be the most valuable in employees, in order of importance:
1. Ability to work in a team structure
2. Ability to make decisions and solve problems
3. Ability to communicate verbally with people inside and outside an organization
4. Ability to plan, organize, and prioritize work
5. Ability to obtain and process information
Here’s some more soft skills to get acquainted with! Make sure your personal training and development plans focus on developing these too: