The Importance of Soft Skills in the Workplace
Before discussing soft skills and their importance in the workplace, it might first be helpful to define their opposite: hard skills. Hard skills are the technical skills one typically learns through hands-on training in school or practical experiences on the job. They are generally specific to the industry or line of work that a person has trained for. Dental Assistants, for example, acquire skills in x-ray processing and maintaining dental records. Veterinary Assistants train to nurse animals and assist in surgery, whereas Medical Assistants learn how to measure vital signs and administer patient injections.
While hard skills are fundamental to performing any job successfully, the power of soft skills is often overlooked or forgotten. From making you a stand-out candidate among employers, to shaping you into a well-rounded worker, there is much to gain from developing these skills.
What are Soft Skills?
Unlike hard skills, soft skills can apply to any job in any field. This is because they pertain to how you interact and communicate with others, manage your work, and handle a variety of situations. Examples include but are not limited to:
- Communication with coworkers, patients, clients, etc.
- Conflict management
- Time management
- Critical thinking
- Situational awareness
- Common sense
- Email Etiquette
- Networking skills
Why are Soft Skills Important in the Workplace?
There is a necessity for soft skills in everyday life, but the ability to apply them in the workplace specifically is beneficial in several ways. At work, soft skills will help you:
- Stand out to employers. If you’re a top candidate for a well-sought-after position, there’s a good chance your background in technical skills got you there. Actually landing the role and standing out among other talented contenders, however, is often a matter of soft skills. Employers want to hire a person that can communicate effectively and work well with others. If an employee is great at their job but does not get along with their peers, there will be long-term issues that might not be worth the trouble of keeping them around. Being in touch with your soft skills will make you that much more distinguished when employers are considering a variety of candidates.
- Build an impressive resume. In order to even be considered for an interview or position, you will more than likely need a resume and/or cover letter. Knowing how to write a concise document that effectively communicates your best abilities and experiences is crucial.
- Further your career. The ability to network, or the process of making professional connections and building relationships, can open doors to new career opportunities down the line.
- Maintain a harmonious work environment. Often labeled interpersonal skills or people skills, soft skills will help you avoid misunderstandings, confusion, conflict, etc. in the workplace. Communicating and resolving issues effectively will ultimately strengthen your professional relationships.
- Enhance your everyday work. Applying your organization, decision-making, and time-management skills at work will allow you to save time and complete day-to-day tasks more efficiently.
Milwaukee Career College Prioritizes Soft Skills
In addition to comprehensive hands-on training, MCC equips students with the soft skills they need for a successful career. Our Career Services team provides assistance with resumes, cover letters, and interview skills, while also giving advice on reputation management, social media presence, and job placement opportunities. All-in-all, we aspire to help students find new careers where they can thrive, and we recognize the importance soft skills play in getting them there.
Interested in learning more or launching a new career? Contact us today!
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