For the first time in the history of mankind, we are transitioning from an industrial age to a knowledge economy. Today, modern human beings are not only expected to know their job roles but also how to manage their emotional intelligence and connect with other people.
In fact, employees are expected to constantly upgrade their hard skills i.e. technical know-how, but also soft skills like communication, leadership, and team-building, etc. in order to survive in today’s job market.
Employers are increasingly looking for people who have soft skills – job-related personal qualities and attributes that can’t be directly learned in school or at work, but which are essential to getting jobs done. This is because employers want employees who will not only do their jobs well but also contribute positively to the culture of the organisation while they’re doing it.
In this blog, we have tried to list down 10 in-demand soft skills employers are Looking for in 2021
Top 10 soft skills: In-demand for today’s job market
The ability to express ideas in a clear, organised, and relevant manner is important for nearly all jobs. It may seem obvious, but many of us struggle with the basics – from speaking clearly in public to writing ‘thank you notes or emails. The reality is that most managers say poor communication skills are the biggest drawback they see in job candidates.
Companies need employees to be organised and efficient with the time they have – how many hours of work, for commuting, or sleeping? These three activities take up a big chunk of our waking hours; it’s important for employees to make efficient use of their time so that managers aren’t constantly micro-managing and can trust them to do their jobs well.
Organisational excellence is the real key to success, but no organisation can achieve that without effective project management. For people with top-notch project management skills (the ability to turn strategies into action plans), the sky’s the limit because they can literally change the face of any organisation that hires them. Example: Your career success depends on how effective you are at managing projects, which is why project management abilities matter a lot in today’s business environment.
Employers want people who are easy to work with, complementary employees who can contribute positively to the culture of the organisation while performing effectively at what they were hired for. An employee’s ability to fit into a team is also important – do they have good social skills? Do they get along with co-workers, clients, and customers?
There are very few managers who can think on their feet and manage complex relationships without any prior training. As a matter of fact, it takes years to evolve into an excellent relationship manager, which is why most employers prefer to hire people who already possess good relationship management skills. Example: People with excellent relationship management capability are rare in today’s job market because it takes a lot of time and effort to learn how to deal with people effectively.
Employers want to be sure employees are dependable – that they can rely on the employee not only to perform their job well but also complete assignments in a timely manner and follow through on commitments.
Employers want employees who can take the initiative to try new things – to come up with unique solutions and ideas, or offer feedback about ways to make work processes more efficient. By taking action rather than following directions without adding value, you’ll be seen as a leader in your organisation.
As more companies begin investing heavily overseas, intercultural sensitivity is becoming increasingly important because it enables you to effectively communicate with people who have a different way of thinking and speaking. Example: Intercultural sensitivity is often associated with soft skills, but it has a great deal to do with your personal attitude towards learning about others’ cultures.
In today’s competitive business environment where companies are fighting for survival, the ability to come up with out-of-the-box ideas can make or break a company. Employers want employees who’ll create new ways to solve existing problems – and develop new products and services that will draw in customers. This includes being able to think creatively when challenges arise – an employee who approaches a problem from a unique perspective rather than defaulting to the usual ways of doing things.
The ability to look at issues from various angles and analyse them critically can be invaluable in situations where quick decisions are often needed, such as when handling clients or trying to come up with solutions to problems that can help improve business. Being able to think on your feet and using solid reasoning skills when problems arise is also important for employees in any organisation, as it can mean the difference between success and failure.
Professionals who can excel in problem-solving and decision-making tasks are always in demand because these are the soft skills that can help you save time and energy while achieving your professional goals. Whether you want to become a project manager or a career consultant, problem-solving and decision-making abilities will play an important role in your success story.
Example: Problem-solving is not just about figuring out issues but also seeking ways to prevent them from reoccurring. Most employers look for people who can not only find solutions to problems but also understand the root causes and work towards preventing them from occurring in the future.
Efficiency means getting things done better, faster, or more efficiently – completing tasks with less time and effort than others would normally take. This can translate into cost savings for the company, which is why it’s an important skill for employees to have.
Employers are looking for people who can bounce back after mistakes or failures and don’t get easily discouraged when things aren’t going well at work. Employers want employees who will remain in control and continue working toward the goals of the organisation, no matter what challenges they face.
Employees who demonstrate integrity are honest not only in their dealings with co-workers but also with clients, customers, and other people outside the company, including vendors, partners, etc. Employees have been terminated for integrity issues – including lying, stealing from the company, and falsifying business records.
In 2021, job seekers will have to be experts in working virtually or remotely. Candidates should demonstrate their ability to stay visible as they work remotely. Visibility in the workplace can come from offering up a critical skill set, collaborating across teams, leveraging tech tools, providing impeccable responsiveness, being in alignment with key business priorities.
Employers want employees with necessary soft skills – but also look for them to have good judgment, a positive attitude, self-motivation, and high levels of integrity as these can go a long way towards maximising productivity.
You don’t need fancy degrees or certifications to be successful in the workplace – just a determination to excel at your work.
So the next time you are hunting for a job, make sure that your soft skills (especially communication and interpersonal skills) are up-to-date, and you’ll be well on your way to earning an easy six-figure salary.
Do you have experiences to share on how your soft skills have added to your success in your workplace? We would love to hear about it.