The workplace of 2015 will continue to hire talent with soft skills to gain a strong competitive advantage

As we look expectantly toward what the New Year will bring, one area where resolutions are often enthusiastically made (and rarely kept) is w.r.t our jobs and career goals.Our professional lives can always do with some improvement; why not start with enhancing your soft skills?


Clarity of thought is the first step towards developing good public speaking skills. This allows you to be concise, deliver your message with a highimpact and gain credibility.Many people with excellent qualifications and exemplary execution abilities suffer from poor communication skills, which cripple their good ideas from the start. A good speech or presentation can get others on-board, while displaying to the senior management that you are serious about those growth forecasts.


This includes a wide range of communication skills and people engagement skills that will help you build productive working relationships with colleagues and form bonds, which are use ful at all stages of your career.Effective interpersonal skills put you in a positive light and enable you to make that crucial first impression a great one. Employers covet people with interpersonal skills like the ability to put people at ease, and get buy-in from others; also networking effortlessly and communication with clarity are vital.


The art of negotiation is not everyone’s cup of tea and it might seem like the hardest skill to develop, but with practice, it can become a real talent that sets you apart from your peers.Sales, HR, marketing, IT, finance negotiating is used across departments to estimate and get the maximum value out of every task. The trick lies in listening to the other point of view and getting to an agreement where bothall parties are equally happy a true win-win situation.


Middle managers require proficiency in this skill as they deal with `egos’, both above and below their management level.They have to ensure the goals set by their seniors are achieved while getting the most out of their teams. This requires that they exercise both creative and analytical solutions. Employees who can do this will discover that it is easier to rise in the ranks without stirring up resentment and in fact, have people rooting for your success. Organisations find these employees invaluable in many different types of situations as they can turn challenges into opportunity.


The various attributes of a good leader have been discussed time and again with the key traits being role-modelling, vision-setting, motivating others, accountability and most importantly developing future leaders at the workplace. Every organisation wants inspirational leaders and most leading companies strategically develop certain people towards bigger roles, but it is also up to an employee to take ownership and find situations where they can use their strengths and demonstrate resourcefulness.

The author is chairperson and MD, Dale Carnegie Training India

Source : The Economic Times

Date : 13-01-2015


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