According to the Oxford Dictionary, soft skills can be defined as :
“personal qualities that enable you to communicate well with other people”
The hard skills can be measured or estimated, the soft skills are very difficult to measure, mainly because they concern abstract skills and not strictly technical ones.
If you are wondering why soft skills are so highly valued by employers, you are quickly answering. The basic factor determining why soft skills are so highly valued is the fact that people with a high level of these skills are easier to solve problems, adapt to changes, get along with their colleagues and, what is very important, with customers. The employer knows that if he or she hands over an important project to a person with a positive attitude, a high level of empathy and good communication skills, he or she will charm the client who will not search for better solutions on the market.
Besides, people who are distinguished by their soft skills will be promoted much faster and their careers will develop at a greater pace than people who are only characterised by hard skills. After all, it’s really all about being able to create relationships and a nice atmosphere, and for that, we need good communication. Basically, you can be the best at whatever you do, but if you lack soft skills your chances of professional success may be limited.
There is no denying that communication, both verbal and written, is extremely important at every stage of our lives as well as our profesional career.
If you know how to talk to people, it will be much easier for you to persuade them to follow your own ideas or to introduce your solutions. Communication also includes situations when you are not afraid to ask questions and inquire about things that interest you, and thus, you learn new things and develop your knowledge based on the experience of others. It is also important to remember that if you can clearly communicate your ideas, it will be easier for others to understand them. Miscommunication is the one based on showing off and commanding others, which only results in difficulties in the flow of the information you care about and in creating an unpleasant atmosphere that can result in frustration, reluctance and work in unfavourable conditions.
It is worth working on your communication skills because it is people who form a team and it is worth keeping good relations with them not only to do a job in the best possible way but also by spending time in a nice and friendly atmosphere that will definitely affect your private life.
No matter what your task is, you usually work in a team. Working in a team is not easy but it allows projects to be completed faster, so an efficient team is really important. In order to work well in a team, it is necessary to develop soft skills. Working in a group requires us to engage in the ideas of others as well as in the activities of the whole group. You can’t just force your ideas, you also have to listen to others and show interest in what others are saying.
It is also important not to criticise them for their ideas or mistakes. We are all human and it is human nature to make mistakes and to be wrong sometimes. Additionally, by combining the ideas of different people you can come up with a brand new, brilliant idea that can significantly speed up your work. Soft skills also include dealing with conflicts in a team. As a leader of a group, you have to make sure that there are only nice relations and a team with a leader who can solve conflicts is a real treasure.
When working in a group it is also worth remembering not to think only about yourself, the group should form one perfectly working organism, so sometimes it is worth to pocket your pride and comply with it for the common good.
Empathy is a very important tool when working with other people. It allows you to predict what a person may feel or how they may react to conflicts and problems that arise. Empathy is about understanding the feelings or actions of others, it is about understanding what others experience.
It is an important part of working with people because based on empathy you can understand others and in case of their problems you can show them compassion, sympathy and understanding which will definitely result in good relations. It is worth to be polite and nice to others and treats others as you would like to be treated. You will also be able to do your job better by understanding what your client means and what they expect. Empathy definitely helps in creating better relationships between people, and thus, also helps in creating job satisfaction.
Soft skills are not only those associated with other people, but they are also these skills that help you to create. It is worth remembering that open-mindedness is also a soft skill, thanks to which your way of thinking can contribute to the creation of something extraordinary.
Creativity, thinking outside the box and finding inspiration from various areas of life are the elements that can distinguish you from others and help you in getting promotion and support in the industry. People with technical mindsets often focus on conventional solutions and usually do not go beyond what is known. With an open mind, you can do much more, you can approach certain solutions or challenges in a completely different way, creating something new and unique. Unusual ideas can be found in very different places. After all, Newton came up with the idea of gravity thanks to an apple. You, too, can come up with a brilliant idea just to stimulate your imagination and open yourself up to unusual ways of thinking.
Nobody likes to work with people who are always sad, depressed, unhappy and grumpy. When we are not happy ourselves, we work a lot worse, not to mention when we are surrounded by people who always have a bad mood. Being a positive person is not necessarily easy because everyone has their own problems and worries but thanks to a positive approach we can cheer ourselves up a bit and at the same time give others some positive energy.
Smile and finding positives even in very critical situations is what really counts at work. It can relieve the tension, help to come up with a solution and get out of a difficult situation.
The ability to say “thank you” and apologise is also very important. If someone does something well it is worth to thank for it, and if we behave improperly or do something wrong the word “sorry” really can change a lot. The above described soft skills are the key elements that are considered during the recruitment and probation period. Working in the IT industry you are not isolated from people, they surround you and if you learn to work well with them you can draw many positive benefits for yourself.
It is worth focusing on developing soft skills and implementing them. The IT industry needs people who are distinguished by all of the above-mentioned skills, this is not only a market for people with hard skills, this is a place for everyone so it is worth to find something for yourself and work with yourself every day to become a better person and a better employee.