Skills generally fall into two categories: hard skills and soft skills. Hard skills are technical and teachable skills that one often needs to effectively complete a specific type of task.
Hard skills like accounting, basic coding, carpentry, and data analysis are quantifiable, and it’s easy to prove if you have them or not. These skills are typically acquired by taking part in formal education and training programs like apprenticeships, college courses, on-the-job training, and seminars.
Here, in this article, we have presented some of the most transferable soft skills that can help you get ahead in your career.
If your work requires hard skills, you can undergo skills upgrading to improve your level of proficiency in your area of specialisation. Doing so will improve your chances of advancing in your chosen career.
On the other hand, soft skills or interpersonal skills determine how one works with and interacts with other people. These are often described as personal attributes, behaviours, or character traits. Having soft skills is also important, as they affect how you interact with other people, form personal and professional relationships, and widen your network.
While it’s not common to find classes that focus on soft skills in schools or colleges, you may be able to find online courses and seminars that focus on developing these skills. Soft skills can have a tremendous impact on your professional success, regardless of your industry or role. Let’s get on with the list now:
Being in possession of strong written and communication skills can present a significant advantage in life. Verbal communication skills make it easy to connect with people and share your thoughts with them. This skill is especially helpful for selling your products or services or pitching an idea at work.
Written communication skills can help you do the same if you’re connecting with people through chat, email, or social media platforms, for example. The ability to clearly and concisely convey information will serve you well in your professional and personal endeavours.
Having the ability to read the room is a great skill to have, whether you’re working in an office or an industrial facility surrounded by heavy machinery.
Being mindful of where you are and what’s happening around you is critical to preventing accidents, identifying possible hazards, and making decisions quickly and efficiently. It is also critical in identifying issues and making an effort to correct them before negative consequences occur.
Situational awareness can be quite useful in high-tension areas such as a hospital emergency room or even in offices that deal with a lot of emergency situations.
Problem-solving is another soft skill that is highly prized in many workplaces and industries. It’s a critical life skill that you can use to get yourself out of sticky situations, even when a win-win outcome doesn’t seem to be in the cards.
Having good problem-solving skills showcases creativity, the ability to see an issue from different perspectives, and the fortitude and determination to make quick and sound decisions in high-pressure situations.
If you have good problem-solving skills and you’ve showcased these well enough, people will turn to you for advice in tough situations and give you more opportunities to lead the team in finding solutions that work for everyone.
If you need inspiration in problem-solving a few inspirational career quotes can help you stay focused and motivated. We have it in plenty on this career portal.
Leadership and Teamwork
Companies across all industries have a need for people with leadership skills. There are different definitions of leadership depending on whom you ask, but leaders play an integral role in building the right culture that will enable a company to flourish.
A strong leader is able to inspire, motivate, and empower team members to accomplish tasks to the best of their abilities. In many scenarios, good leaders can serve as good examples and impart leadership skills to others, too.
Most professionals have likely gone through several years of formal schooling, but this doesn’t automatically mean that they know how to pick up new skills or quickly familiarise themselves with new surroundings on their own.
In a work environment where the demand for various skills can emerge and fade in just a few years’ time, individuals who know how to learn new things on the fly have a serious advantage.
If the demand for their original technical skills declines, these individuals can simply shift from one area of specialisation to another. In a way, the ability to learn can help you become more adaptable in an ever-changing world.
Detail-orientedness is an important skill to have, especially in places and industries that are not too forgiving of mistakes, such as finance, accounting, and engineering.
Dedication to precision and accuracy can help you turn in quality work each and every time, even if you lack supervision.
This can be an important component for succeeding in remote or work-from-home jobs or in positions where you’re expected to vouch for the veracity and credibility of facts and figures.
How many of these soft skills do you have, and are you currently working on improving them? If you’re aiming for a promotion or looking to transfer to a new workplace or industry, picking up these skills will help you make a smoother transition. Now is as good a time as any to get started.