Looking through various job ads, you’ll definitely find requirements related to high soft skills or a problem-solving attitude. That is because soft skills help you in many ways to demonstrate your strong sides as a professional and enhance your career path.

Every organization looks for the best mix of professional and individual skills and experience depending on business requirements. 

The truth is that it is no longer enough to be just a functional expert. In order to complement the set of unique core competencies, candidates must have certain soft skills that modern companies look for in a potential hire.

What soft skills do you and your team members have? Are there enough to keep up with the modern organization and be considered a successful expert? In this article, we describe the high-demanded soft skills that are most valued today in large organizations and teams with innovative approaches.

What are Soft Skills?

Soft skill is any human skill or quality that can be classified as a personal habit. Soft skills also involve a cluster of personal qualities, attitudes, and social graces that make a person a good employee and compatible to work with. 

The most vivid examples are interpersonal and communication abilities that many employers seek in job candidates. Organizations value soft skills because experience shows that these characteristics can be as important in indicating job performance as hard skills.

A healthy and efficient work environment strongly depends on soft skills. After all, your workplace is an interpersonal space where you build and fostered relationships, exchange perspectives, and resolve conflicts.

By the way, almost 95% of recruiters believe that in many cases strongly evolved soft skills outweigh work experience.

Why do we need soft skills?

Nowadays the most competitive job markets are not limited to technical abilities and specialist knowledge. More and more job roles require interaction with other departments, colleagues, or customers, that’s why soft skills are becoming crucial to most employers. 

HR managers are looking for individuals who have the potential to become team leaders. They do not expect you to have experience and all qualifications from day one, but they probably want to know that you have the qualities that will allow you to grow in the role and constantly learn.

The most typical delusion relates to the opinion that soft skills are important only when facing external customers. However, they are equally important when it comes to interacting with team members.

5 Benefits Soft Skills Provide

Soft skills in project management

Image source: Unsplash.com (B. Cagle)

There are obvious advantages of soft skills that help you to build a successful career. Here they are:

  1. Soft skills identify team players who can not just do the job, but are also able to do it well. For example, a person with advanced time management skills will know how to set tasks’ priorities to meet work deadlines.
  2. Soft skills help to recognize the best player between the candidates who meet the common job requirements. For example, if candidates have similar professional backgrounds and enough experience, you will probably hire the one who is more flexible and collaborative.
  3. Soft skills help to hire for potential. For example, junior positions require attracting candidates with a willingness to learn and adaptiveness, as opposed to hiring an expert.
  4. Soft skills help to make comprehensive hiring decisions. For example, hiring a sales specialist, you look for a candidate who certainly has experience in sales and is familiar with the industry and also who is able to negotiate and has perfect communication abilities.
  5. Soft skills help to define candidates’ cultural fit. For example, when If you are looking for initiative team players, it is worth selecting candidates who are decisive and not afraid to take ownership of their job.

11 High-Demanded Soft Skills You Definitely Need

Project managers soft skills

Image source: Unsplash.com (K. Saboten)

1. Communication

Successful communication is always helpful during any interview process and in your career overall. The ability to communicate involves the ability to speak to others in various situations. 

There are five components effective communication involves:

  • Verbal communication means the ability to express thoughts in words concisely and clearly. 
  • Nonverbal communication is about successfully projecting body language and facial expressions. 
  • Written communication is the ability to compose text messages and different types of documents. 
  • Aural communication includes active listening and the ability to hear what others say. 
  • Visual communication refers to the ability to relay information using pictures and other visual means.

Related skills:

  • Clarity.
  • Confidence.
  • Respect.
  • Constructive feedback.
  • Friendliness.
  • Conflict resolution.

2. Leadership

Leadership enables you to guide others while you are reaching the goals of your company. This ability is critical for all types of management.

People with strong leadership skills are able to inspire others and lead their teams to success. Leadership closely relates to a range of other skills that you need in the workplace:

  • The ability to make quick decisions.
  • Problem-solving and conflict management.
  • The ability to motivate others.
  • Selflessness.
  • Managing projects.
  • Agility.
  • Humility.
  • Authenticity.
  • Versatility.
  • Trust.
  • A positive attitude.

3. Self-motivation

Working in a modern organization requires having a positive attitude and the desire to work without constant supervision. 

This clearly demonstrates employees’ commitment and reliability and shows that people can fit into an organizational structure without the need for constant control.

Evaluating this skill, consider the following related characteristics: 

  • Ambition.
  • Commitment.
  • Positivity.
  • Initiatives.

4. Teamwork

Most employees are part of a team. It can be a department, division, or another structural unit. You may prefer to work alone, however, it’s critical to demonstrate your understanding and appreciating and working in partnership with others and the value of joining forces.

Teamwork is the ability to operate well in a group of people to effectively accomplish tasks. Working in a team requires the intuition to understand when to be a leader and when to be a listener. Like leadership, teamwork involves a range of other soft skills:

  • Delegation.
  • Conflict management.
  • Cooperation.
  • Coordination.
  • Idea exchanging.
  • Mediation.
  • Negotiating.

5. Responsibility

Responsibility is also a highly valued soft skill. Usually, taking responsibility relates to taking ownership of not only your private goals but the company goals as well. Team members who fail to take responsibility during their everyday work will be less productive overall.

In order to evolve responsibility, consider the following skills as well:

  • Accountability.
  • Discipline.
  • Trustworthiness.
  • Motivation.
  • Conscientiousness.

6. Flexibility

Flexibility reflects the willingness to embrace new tasks and challenges calmly and without fuss.

Flexible team members are willing to help out where needed and they can adapt quickly when plans change. they can easily take on extra responsibilities

7. Adaptability

Companies and employees must be ready to changes and do it at the speed of light to remain competitive. Organizations are looking for people, who can shift gears and change direction as needed, who are able to serve in more than one professional role.

Adaptability is about embracing and rolling with changes. This soft skill is especially important when working in a fast-paced or constantly changing work environment (advertising, PR, event management, nursing, etc.) 

Related skills:

  • Self-management.
  • Calmness.
  • Optimism.
  • Open-mindedness.
  • Self-confidence.
  • Organization.

8. Problem-solving

There are many people who think that the better way to avoid problems is to skip and ignore them. Obviously, this way leads to even more problems. However, all the bumps in the road and stumbling blocks are also a part of someone’s job. 

The problem-solving ability requires a combination of analytical and creative thinking in order to find a solution. Employees who are able to approach a challenge with a cool and level head can often get a solution more efficiently than those who can not.

Related skills: 

  • Analytical skills.
  • Lateral thinking.
  • Logical reasoning.
  • Observation.
  • Persistence.
  • Persuasion.
  • Brainstorming skill.

9. Decisiveness

This characteristic involves the ability to make quick and effective decisions. No impulsiveness and recklessness! Decisiveness combines the following skills:

  • Assessing relevant data.
  • Weighing up the options.
  • Putting things into perspective.
  • Anticipating potential consequences.

When your company faces pressure, a decisive team player will take considered actions quicker.

10. Creativity

Creativity comes to the rescue when you want to develop innovative solutions to various challenges at work. Looking for job examples where this skill is rather important, recall designers, artists, marketers, architects, and so on. 

Your colleagues with creativity may find new ways to perform tasks, improve processes or even develop new business approaches.

Related skills:

  • Imagination.
  • Curiosity.
  • Learning from others.
  • Open-mindedness.
  • Calculating risks.
  • Mind mapping.
  • Innovation.
  • Experimenting.

11. Time Management

Demonstrate your ability to work productively by using your time wisely is what time management about. This skill is extremely important in the IT environment, especially in project management

Here are some related time management skills:

  • Goal setting.
  • Prioritizing.
  • Planning.
  • Focusing on details.
  • Stress management.

Wrapping it up

Soft skills are fundamental for reaching the job you want and essential for your career growth. Automation expanding will surely lead to the increase of soft skills’ popularity. 

Perhaps, you must still possess the requisite tech skills to get the job of your dream, however, without soft skills, you will not compete.