There is nothing soft about soft skills
- Rise of smart Machines and Systems.
- Computational World.
- New Media Ecology.
- Superstructured Organisations.
- Globally connected World.
These are the trends and drivers of change – not just ahead of us in distant future - but already well and truely impacting our status quo in all aspects of our lives, especially in the workforce.
With smarter technology available, repetitive tasks can be automated which means many jobs – it’s suggested we will see 25 Million jobs disappear over the next 10 years – won’t require human input.
So what we want to know is:
- How to stay relevant?
- How to prepare for jobs that don’t exist yet?
- What to do now to not only survive but thrive in the workforce of tomorrow?
Evolve or dissolve
Key is to see beyond these ‘threats’ as each of these drivers are massive opportunities for humans and our future jobs when looking at it deeper.
With more technology, data and connectivity, the human aspect of using it to more effectively communicate and interact with others becomes more and more important.
Big Data is not about Data
Take the example of big data – it’s fantastic to have all this information but if you don’t know how to interpret them and make sense of it and translate it into easy for everyone to understand language, it’s useless.
More connectivity and access to resources also means we can tap into talent pools and expertise from all over the world.
That also means that teams will be a mix of ‘real’ and virtual staff which takes leadership and communication to another level of complexity.
However, owning this skills of maximising virtual collaboration means higher productivity, more engagement and with that, staying ahead of the curve (> hard facts).
So what are soft skills?
Pretty much everything that is not tangible - which is the problem.
But think about this: hard skills are skills that we don’t know when we are born, so they are taught which means any of these skills can be learned if we want (showing initiative and enthusiasm to actually do it = soft skill).
So whilst we can’t prepare for jobs that don’t exist yet - we can’t learn coding languages that haven’t been invented or repair self driving cars, what we can do is work on our attitude to learn it, show enthusiasm and positivity, motivate others to put the same effort in and make other people feel good about themselves which is probably the most critical skill.
Because recognition (esteem) is a basic human need and the feeling someone else gives us is what we remember about them, not what they say.
And remembering something or someone means we act on it eventually - when we need it as it will be the first thing that comes to mind and this is where the opportunities for careers or businesses happen.
So far so good, but who hires because of their ability to motivate others?
Probably nobody as long as you are a PT as this is what your job actually entails.
It is much easier to measure someone’s ability to code or to do accounting than measuring someone’s ability to solve conflicts.
But what is the best technical expert worth if nobody wants to work with him or understands what he actually says?
Soft skills get little respect but they can make or break your career
Personal relationships, character and attitude – these are key skills of today and tomorrow, in any industry or job.
By focusing on them you can not only increase the work performance but also build stronger relationships which are the key to progress in your career or succeed in your business (remember – people by of people because they like and trust them).
What to look out for?
Everything can be learned… if we want and actually do something about it
Every relationship starts with a conversation and the key is that it’s not about what you mean to say but what others understand
Can never be replaced by AI or robots.
Solving a problem that bothers us initiates creative thinking which results in coming up with a solution = innovation = evolution.
Repetitive tasks that follow an algorithm and process don’t require creativity, so it makes sense for robots to do them as it saves times and reduced errors.
We have more information available to us than ever before but if they can’t be interpreted and used in an action-able way, they are useless.
So whilst data scientists and co are on the rise, it’s the ones who can translate the complex information into easy to understand language so everyone can understand and act on it that are in real demand.
Higher productivity comes from getting the best out of people which is triggered by emotions, good and bad ones.
Having the ability to connect to others in a deep and direct way, to sense and stimulate reactions and desired interactions will result in higher productivity, innovation and competitive advantage.
Same thing … it’s not about what you say about yourself, but what others say about you that counts to get you where you want to be.
But the good news is: you can take control over the perception from others of you by everything you do and say.
It is about your Personal Brand that you can develop and manage so you get to where you want to be.
Take the test - what will you find when you google yourself and select 'images'?
Are you happy with the first page that comes up? If not - it's never too late to take baby steps.
Get in touch to see if you qualify for a Personal Branding Consultation to discover your sweet Spot and bring it to life!