Celebrating Soft Skills in the Workplace

A typical job description typically has a little background information on the hiring company but then lists out job responsibilities, duties, and desired skills and qualifications. The context within each section highlights a combination of both hard and soft skills. For example, an account development manager job description may list the following job duties:

  • Initiate sales process by scheduling appointments, qualifying potential prospects and building relationships.
  • Maintain personal networks to continue improving job knowledge and educational opportunities.
  • Close sales opportunities, prepare and evaluate contracts, and relay customer or prospect concerns/issues.

In each of the aforementioned list items, there is a mix of hard and soft skills of which the perfect candidate needs to have some working knowledge. To qualify a potential prospect the candidate would need to first understand how to identify a prospect, track the prospect using appropriate customer relationship management software, and move the prospect through the sales process.

A person who has a good working knowledge of any popular CRM could manage the data and the prospect’s status change through the digital system. However, the candidate would also need to have the interpersonal and communication skills to navigate the choppy waters of conversations early in the sales cycle.

Other soft skills that are beneficial in almost any role include teamwork, problem-solving, listening, a strong work ethic, and creativity. Combinations of soft skills with learned hard skills are what separates a regular decent candidate from one of the top tier candidates—the ones that keep recruiters up at night waiting for, dreaming about.

Without soft skills the foundation of an effective team may start to crack and crumble, employees may lack the ability to creatively solve a client issue or people who are good leaders never actually hear their employees concerns resulting in the breakdown of a team or the loss of quality staff. These soft skills cannot be taught, rather they part of someone’s makeup or they are not. 

Hiring candidates who stand above the rest in both hard and soft skills are going to be the employees that help build and highlight soft skills in the team members around them. Slowly employers will notice the soft skills of their staff improving, or that the recruiting team is building a stronger base of new hires who embody both skill traits.

In the end, your organization should be run by great teams, and those teams should be built on a foundation free of cracks from a lack of soft skills. The right blend of hard and soft skills will impact the existing team members and help to further improve their performance and could in fact help breed a new group of leaders and up and coming managers. These are the people who have a deeply rooted vision for their career and mirror the organization’s vision and strategy for success.

Employers around the country are looking for candidates who have a healthy balance of both hard and soft skills for their open positions. The recruiters, though, may be finding it increasingly difficult to locate these individuals in the “stacks” of resumes flooding their inbox. Contact Insured Solutions to take your recruiting team to the next level and stack the deck in your favor.

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