Many people overlook soft skills because they think that being technically qualified is enough, but being able to clearly communicate your value to the rest of the team will help you stand out from the other candidates interviewing or your peers. Here are our 5 top soft skills to master below:
Having a growth mindset is first on the list. This is a really useful skill to have because it helps people not feel afraid of new and difficult challenges. Candidates who possess this mindset know that with a strategy of hard work and dedication, they can successfully overcome hard challenges. Once you master having a growth mindset, your limitations are almost erased, it's the skill to learn new skills so to speak. It's a case of grabbing the challenge with both hands and breaking it down into smaller digestible pieces that you can conquer one at a time. It's a simple strategy, but you can apply it to almost anything.
Emotional intelligence (EQ). This skill is essential for life-long success because it helps people to manage their emotions as well as others. Candidates who possess EQ know how to identify and articulate their feelings in a way that will contribute positively to the company's culture. This skill is particularly useful in pressured situations, where keeping your cool, and being self-aware of your actions are magnified. To master EQ, it's useful to break it down into its four subcategories of self-management, self-awareness, social awareness, and relationship management. Note how having a growth mindset would benefit mastering this skill via smaller chunks.
Communication is our next top soft skill to have in the employability toolkit. This may seem like an obvious one, but as Warren Buffet said: "Invest in yourself. One easy way to become worth 50% more than you are now at least is to hone your communication skills." This isn't a simple case of making sure emails are spelled right, communication skills are most useful in complex situations involving multiple parties, especially when you're the middle person. Other skills like organization and time management naturally come into play with communication. Knowing how to efficiently address and respond to issues, solutions, comments, and requests will instantly make you a valuable candidate.
Being resilient is another must in the eye of the employer. Resilient and resourceful candidates can take on the unexpected. A lot of people don't realize how much they crave routine until it's suddenly gone, but life throws curveballs all the time, so being able to persevere in a tough situation is an invaluable skill. Given that employers are looking for you to be a self-starter who can work independently. Having a simple backup plan for any unexpected issues can save a ton of time and stress.
Identifying a problem and solving it isn't a skill reserved for entrepreneurs. Being able to think of new, creative approaches to long-standing challenges can make you an attractive prospect in the eyes of the employer, especially if you identify an issue in your pre-interview company research, and provide a selection of solutions in the interview. It's so easy to practice problem-solving, two immediate methods are to download some brainteaser puzzle apps to solve in any spare time such as a lunch break. A more practical method is to note down any everyday challenges that you face and find a solution. For example, if you're wasting hours deciding what meals to plan for next week, download a random picker to choose a selection of your favorite meals.
And there we have it! Our top 5 soft skills that employers are looking for in candidates today. You'll notice after reading these that they massively complement each other. If you master these, you'll be someone who isn't afraid of challenges, manages their emotions, oozes efficiency with effective communication, and provides useful solutions. Not to mention if a disaster strikes, you'll be resilient enough to continue operating at this high level.