Skills this, skills that. Whether you’re deep in the throes of a job search or working to develop your career, it’s all about your skill set. However, did you know that there are different types of skills? We’re talking about soft and hard skills. Baffled? Let us clear things up for you and share our top soft skills list for career success!
Why you need our soft skills list
There’s always room for improvement. Even the most experienced, polished professional will benefit from adding a few more strings to their bow. Reaching success and staying there requires you to constantly learn and adapt. Having a soft skills list to refer to helps you to identify areas to work on.
Hard skills vs. soft skills
First things first, what is the difference between hard skills and soft skills? The easy way to get your head around the two concepts is to consider whether or not something can be measured or qualified. Hard skills tend to be more technical or job-specific skills or experience. Whereas soft skills are harder to quantify as they are personal, transferrable abilities or attributes.
It’s believed that, although hard skills are important, soft skills are more important in the eyes of employers and bosses. Hard skills come with experience, soft skills can be harder to learn. Soft skills will dictate how you are as an employee or co-worker; your personality, attitude and ability to build professional relationships depend on them.
Developing your soft skills
We’re by no means insinuating that hard skills are easier to learn. Building specific experience or expertise within your field can take years! The great thing about them is that you’re able to monitor your progress and assess yourself to make sure you’re always up to speed. With soft skills, it’s a little trickier.
Although soft skills are tied in with who you are as an individual and preferred working style, they are still skills. This means that they can always be worked on and improved. As they are harder to measure, self-reflection and seeking feedback are useful tools to employ. Like with any skill, improving your soft skills requires self-awareness, conscious effort and, most importantly, practice.
What employers look for
When considering candidates for positions or promotions, they want the most well-rounded individual for the job. Yes, they are looking for someone with the hard skills to get the job done, but they are also looking for the right soft skills, too.
Business is all about relationships. There are very few jobs in the world that will require you to work in complete isolation. Your ability to interact with others is an important aspect of your employability. Soft skills directly affect the way you work with others, so employers value them greatly.
Your attitude and ability to work is also essential to your success, and employers know this. So, you may have the necessary hard skills to do the job, but it’s your soft skills that will make sure you get it done.
Your soft skills
It’s not always easy to be aware of your soft skills. Some are so ingrained in you that they’re second nature, others may never cross your mind. To guarantee your ongoing professional growth, take a look at the soft skills list below.
Soft skills list
To create a full, comprehensive soft skills list is a difficult task! There are so many and a select few are more relevant to some roles than others. So, we’re keeping things general. Here is a soft skills list that applies to most job roles.
- Listening skills
- Communication skills
- Decision making
- Ability to deal with pressure/conflict
- Team player
- Ability to take instruction
- Influencing skills or ability to inspire others
- Right attitude
- Interpersonal skills
- Well presented
- Ability to manage workload and meet deadlines
- Eager to learn
- Positive outlook
- Will accept criticism and feedback
How do you measure up?
Bringing it all together
The soft skills list will help you to identify the skills you have and those you don’t. It’s also useful to consider those that you feel you are strong at and others that need work. Remember, it’s not enough to just possess the relevant soft skills, try to think about how you can demonstrate these at work or throughout the job application process.