In today’s changing world, the professional scenario is also undergoing a paradigm shift. Employees are now required to display more than the bare minimum skill set that a job profile demands. Companies and employers need job seekers and employees to possess ‘soft skills’ in addition to their qualifications.
Interviewers today hire candidates based on more than their hard skills. Hard skills are the abilities, knowledge, and experience that a person needs for a particular job. Candidates are also judged on their drive, communication and people skills, ethics, problem-solving skills, etc.
These traits are known as ‘soft skills’ (interpersonal skills/people skills/social skills).
The Importance of Soft Skills
Over the years, the importance of soft skills has started to take prominence. As competition grows, businesses need employees who can retain customers and bring in profits. Being good at their job is very important, but being able to handle customers and clients is pertinent as well. Let’s take a look at 5 reasons why soft skills importance for employees.
Improves Communication with Clients
People who have the knack for communication are able to do both – retain existing clients and get new clients on board. It is believed that being able to have a good way with words is an inborn gift, but it can also be cultivated. Companies should conduct training and interactive sessions to help employees improve their communication skills.
In today’s work scenario, there are fewer back-office jobs per se. Employees at all levels need to interact with clients for some part of their job. An employee who can converse effectively comes across as sincere and confident. Combined, these are essential traits for increasing the client base.
Ensuring Efficient Working
Teamwork is a crucial part of any organization that functions smoothly and efficiently. Being a team player is an extremely important soft skill that all employees must possess. When an employee isn’t a team player or has issues that affect his/her ability to work with other colleagues positively, it has an impact on the overall working of the company.
A good team works efficiently and yields better results. This works in the company’s favor. Hence, organizations should conduct team building exercises and hold sessions where employees are taught the importance of working in teams, and also ways to work on their team spirit.
Bolstering Confidence and Idea Flow
There are employees who nod along at meetings and brainstorming sessions, and then there are employees who take charge and share their ideas and thoughts. The latter is an important soft skill that will help employees scale higher in their job. Confidence and participation are necessary for creating a free flow of ideas.
When an employee shares his/her thoughts and ideas, it puts them on the map. They are noticed by their seniors, and this can open up more opportunities for them. It also shows their interest in their work. Likewise, employees who share their ideas and thoughts with clients create an interactive and friendly space. This is a great way to bring in more clients.
Improving Efficiency of Work
Work ethic, or drive/motivation to work, is another crucial soft skill that employees must possess in order to grow professionally. It is believed that being motivated and having a strong work ethic is an innate skill, but it can also be cultivated and enhanced through the right methods.
Companies can use training techniques to bolster motivation and drive in their employees. A method of incentives also helps. Along with training, if employees are offered more perks or monetary returns for the additional work that they do, it will encourage them to continue on that path.
Better Decision Making and Problem Solving
Possessing strong decision-making skills is an important and much-desired soft skill in employees. An employee who can keep aside all prejudices and take timely decisions for the benefit of the company is always going to be preferred over anyone else.
Similarly, the ability to solve a problem through a solution-oriented, outside-the-box approach is much coveted. Both of these soft skills can also be inculcated in employees through training and interactive sessions.
It is evident that soft skills are an essential requirement for employees. Soft skills help employees become more efficient in their work, have a better motivation, and be more approachable for clients. Organizations should regularly hold training sessions to help employees enhance their soft skills further.