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Soft Skills that Employers are in search for & why they matter a lot?

Imagine a situation where two candidates are equally qualified for the job position, but only one of them gets hired for the job. It may be an ideal situation for a hiring manager. But this situation has a dilemma, and the predicament demands solutions.

When choosing between equally qualified candidates for the job, one of the most significant factors that organisations are now prioritising is the "soft skills" as a fundamental differentiator. 

While hard skills are crucial for any organisation, soft skills are increasingly demanding their space. The excitement and willingness to learn can further cement a person's expertise ascend to the top and add more value to your organisation. 

Future-proof (soft) skills are abilities that are innate to an individual's personality. westMonroe Business and Technology Consulting Firm found out that more than 78% of HR leaders focus on soft skills like creativity, communication, and leadership. 67% of HR leaders say that they've withheld a job offer when they realised a lack of soft skills in a candidate. This article will explain the importance of soft skills in any organisation and how HR can best assess the candidates while hiring them for the job.

What are soft skills?

Many people define soft skills in different ways. It is a mix of communication skills, personality traits, attitudes, social intelligence, emotional intelligence, and emotional quotient. A synergy of these skills enables the employees to work in a dynamic and complex environment while making good relations with their colleagues and achieving their goals.

Various Soft Skills that your organisation requires:

When a team faces a gap in soft skills, it may experience issues ranging from friction among members, missed deadlines, to poor outcomes.

Let us look into some of the soft skills that are essential for your organisation:

1. Creative Brains:
 

We are living in a world of technology, but human creativity is still needed. We know that creativity is vital for any organisation's success. Employing a creative workforce is essential as they introduce fresh ideas. Recruiting those candidates that continuously strive to bring innovative ideas are very difficult to find, and they are the "make or break" element of an organisation that pushes the entire work team forward. 

A creative team of employees understands how to:

  • Develop user stories and map out user flows when designing solutions.

  • Involve stakeholders to ensure that your innovations deliver real value to the end-users.

  • Manage trade-offs when challenges and problems rear their heads during product development.

  • Optimise your project development as early as possible.

 2. Active participants in professional networks:

 

Therefore, such potential employees usually come loaded with the relevant authority in their area of expertise. By building and showcasing their portfolio and online presence, they create further collaborations.

So, be sure to consider people that have:

  • Joined professional networks.

  • Maintained a healthy relationship with their former bosses and colleagues.

  • Participated in webinars, seminars, and other relationship-building opportunities.

3. Global Thinking:

Today every organisation has reached the international markets and has broken the geographical barriers. So your new hires need to be willing to work with people from all walks of life when it comes to genders, cultures, religions, and languages.

Are they prepared to break away from their local region's conventional work practices? 

Here are some pointers that show your prospective employee can work within the international marketplace:

  • Have experience handling assignments that needed global exposure

  • Willing to learn a new language.

  • Eager to know diverse cultures.

  • Willing to understand how people work internationally and adjust their practices accordingly.

4. Versatility:

Versatility means the ability to do multiple but related activities and tasks. A versatile employee comes with a wide-ranging expertise and skill set that enables them to carry out diverse roles in your organisation to add more value.

A good example might be a marketing specialist whose verbal and written language skills are so good that he can comfortably take on a communications role.

Versatility can help your organisation to:

  • Capitalise on all of your employee's skills beyond your job descriptions.

  • Boost worker's satisfaction and motivation levels, since they get to maximise their talents.

  • Swiftly respond to changes like economic fluctuations, market demands, and organisational restructuring.

  • Boost its image, lower staff turnover, and safeguard its continuity.

5. Excellent Communication Skills:
 

One of the essential skills when it comes to hiring an employee is communication fluency. Effective communication in the workplace is necessary for an organisation's success. Employees should know how to communicate effectively as well as one should know how to listen actively.

Here are some of the communication skills to consider:

  • Clear, engaging, and confident presentation skills: Individuals with such abilities can explain the workings of a particular system or present a proposal for a novice project

  • Active listening skills: Any employee should listen carefully to project requirements and solve the problems by 'hearing between the lines.' With this skill, they can assist people in working out solutions to problems and issues related to particular projects

  • Precise and clear writing skills: Your prospective employees should know how to document project scope, create a new database's user manual and compile a proposal in clear and precise writings

6. Top-Notch leadership skills:

Your senior executive's team may consist of people, such as a digital marketing officer or a team leader. 

Their single primary role is to lead teams and accomplish a set of goals. But the truth is that your prospective professionals should demonstrate some level of leadership skills.

Technological leadership entails three primary responsibilities:

  • Innovation: trying out new ideas, hacking new solutions, experiment with them, and acting as an example for the rest of the team members to follow

  • Team support: ensure the smooth running of the project by motivating, facilitating, and organising proper workflow

  • Professional expertise: ability to enforce and monitor standards and practices of their team's work

To ensure the leader can effectively perform the above responsibilities, keenly check if they possess the following leadership skills:

  • Decisiveness

  • Encouragement and communication

  • Clarity and intelligence

  • Strategic thinking and problem solving

  • Delegation

7. Empathy:

Empathy is the ability to put oneself in a person's position and understand what they're going through. 

With this soft skill, a professional can establish connections with their team, evaluate every option, and choose the most suitable way that the members can adopt.

Empathy also helps developers create solutions that allow the end-users to do more with fewer frustrations and thoughts. By putting in the end-users' shoes, one can go beyond the superficial knowledge to a real appreciation of the users' behaviours and feelings.

So, how do you know your next breed of professionals is empathetic? They tend to:

  • Listen and reflect on other people's feelings.

  • Watch films and reading novels about other people's journeys to gain different perspectives.

  • Surround themselves with empathetic people at the workplace and elsewhere.

  • Ask how others are doing, and they don't cling to snap judgments and stereotypes.

8. Effective time management:

Every organisation is looking for people who can plan out and control the amount of time they spend on specific tasks for more efficient work. 

Time management is vital to a professional since it helps in:

  • Boosting Performance: Following an exact schedule helps in quick decision making and reduces procrastination.

  • Producing better work: it eliminates the race to beat deadlines and ensures professionals prioritise work. They allocate enough time to finish tasks without rushing.

  • Deliver work on time: a great timekeeper may complete a project several days ahead of time to provide a buffer for any issue that might crop up. They strive to ensure the technological product reaches the market on time.

  • Reduce stress: when tasks pile up due to poor time management, the stress level tends to spike. A stressed employee can negatively affect other employees' productivity.

  • Improve value: An employee that submits work on time has an excellent reputation, and can take on other projects or tasks after finishing their assignments ahead of time. Overall, this helps in reducing backlogs.

  • Boost confidence:Consistently completing work makes a person gain more confidence and a sense of accomplishment. They gain more motivation to take on new work opportunities, which is a plus to the organisation.

9. Ethics and Integrity:

Finding a robust ethical employee who doesn't breach an organisation's code of conduct is very difficult to find. A strong work ethic with integrity is hard to teach and very difficult to maintain if it doesn't already exist.

So when filling out positions in your organisation, be sure the candidates portray strong moral principles and honesty.

  • As an ethical employee, they need to:

  • Only access the information that they need to carry out their tasks.

  • Only use the information obtained only for the purpose 

  • Protect the data while in their possession.

  • Dispose of the information properly once it has served its purpose.

  • Follow the company's Code of Conduct.

Wrapping Up:

As today's top organisations continue to take the real world by storm that will benefit from hiring employees with soft skills. Now, this task may prove to be a very challenging one. Don't worry- we at m2sindia.com have your back. We are seasoned gurus when it comes to fetching skilled performers who want to make a difference to your organisation.

 

 

By Vipul Kukreja| Jan 11th, 2021

About the Author: Vipul Kukreja

Vipul Kukreja is a Business Coach, Consultant, Mentor, Facilitator and Trainer. He assists business owners, corporate leaders and entrepreneurs in achieving their goals with an effortless Flow. Through his notable methodology, he empowers owners and senior leadership in transforming their businesses and careers from being vulnerable to viable. He is currently working on Viability.in, a unique concept of benefiting his customers create valuable, marketable and sellable businesses. The engagement begins by assessing various scenarios, working alongside the customer and regularly navigate the challenges in achieving the goals. Vipul Kukreja is also the Founder & CEO of M2S Consulting (India) Private Limited and is a promoter of Viability.in

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