Hard skills or soft skills or a combination of both, in whichever you choose, skills are here to stay. In the midst of a global pandemic (covid-19) , the strong desire to develop one's skills has taken a sharp increase with the influx of online virtual trainings readily available.
In the Linkedin learning 2020 Workplace Learning Report with 6,607 professionals involved, 15 most in-demand skills were formed with a combination of both hard and soft skills. The top 5 soft skills are as follows : 1. Creativity
Definition #1: the ability to create ; generation of original ideas or solutions to recurring or future problems
Definition #2: Ability to perceive the world and things in new ways and find hidden patterns
Definition #3: Generating possibilities or alternatives to solve problems
Try our tools that we have shared in Alvigor - SCAMPER Tool
2. Persuasion :
Getting your ideas adopted in the workplace, explaining the benefits of the new health and benefit scheme to the employees, convincing teams to attend the virtual dinner and dance event for the end of this year, selling your solutions to a potential buyer. These are examples of what persuasion could look like.
Perloff defines persuasion can be defined as "...a symbolic process in which communicators try to convince other people to change their attitudes or behaviors regarding an issue through the transmission of a message in an atmosphere of free choice.(source: The Dynamics of Persuasion: Communication and Attitudes in the 21st Century. London: Routledge; 2003.
Persuasion as a skillset is not bounded by role or hierarchical position, it is a person's ability to convince and to send the message across to the other parties. Take for example : convince your team that your proposed plans have been well-crafted and worth a try. How would you convince them? Logic, emotions, tell a story, show the facts, quote references?
From a leaders perspective, daily interactions with team members via teams , skype, zoom etc is to constant persuade and convince them of their safety under your care. Convincing them to stay focused in times of uncertainty.
So how can you become more persuasive?
A social scientist, Robert Cialdini, found that in persuasion/influence, there are 6 domains that increases persuasion : 1. Reciprocity : Obligation when owed or given something 2. Scarcity : When something becomes less in supply, the demand may shoot up (staycations on a rise when lockdown fizzes out) 3. Authority : based on credible knowledge experts ( heart specialist, psychologist or even your neighbourhood handyman) 4. Consistency : Loopholes in conversations, reputation or brand can kill consistency and persuasion
5. Likeability ; People would say YES to people whom they like (obviously, right?) 6. Consensus : If others are doing, then it is must be good. (All queuing up at new pop up store, must be good!)
Not just virtual collaboration, but collaboration to hit the intended outcomes. Example: Working on a project, doing your part of project is already expected, but ensuring that you finish your part faster than the deadline helps your other team members to get the project moving faster, that is collaboration.
In this day and age, collaboration means that we lend a helping hand because we may have prior knowledge or the expertise to enable success in projects or initiatives. Keeping mum about things and just doing your primary role is sometimes not enough.
To build collaboration in your team, you can read our resource on building a high performance team
Responsiveness to change, ability to experiment at a faster rate than others, adjust as the landscape shifts. To build adaptability in organization or teams, it is important to have employees own the change and make the change. Just like how we have done it for our clients through hackathons and design thinking workshops which can be done both online or offline.
So are you really adaptable? Think about the following statements, and choose either A or B
A) I tend to think of change as bad. B) I tend to see change as an opportunity.
A) I dislike change. B) Some change can be worthwhile.
A) I feel uptight when plans change at home or work. B) I find changes in plans energizing.
A) I hate making adjustments in my routines. B) I make adjustments to routines easily.
A) I feel threatened when a challenge arises. B) I like a challenge.
A) I often get “locked in” to an idea or approach to solving a problem. B) I’m open to new information when solving a problem.
If you find yourself agreeing with most of the A statements, you may be someone who is uncomfortable with change. If you find yourself agreeing with more of the B statements, you may be more able to adapt as changes demand.
5. Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence (EQ) refers to the ability to identify and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. Emotional Intelligence is an often overlooked trait when recruiting potential managers. There is hardly any use in employing a leader who is competent in their work but is unable to relate to their subordinates on both an emotional and personal level. In many instances, corporations can underestimate just how important it is for a leader to be able to connect emotionally to their underlings, research has shown that workers who are emotionally invested in their leader are more motivated to work harder towards the common goal.
To know more about emotional intelligence, read this
In conclusion, the 5 soft skills will stay important and essential as the workplaces have now adopted the hybrid way of working.
To learn more about soft skills, take our future skills assessment -> click here or visit
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