6 Transformational Soft Skills to Drive You Towards Career Success

How do you see Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and other successful figures in their respective industries?

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Jobs is a captivating communicator, Gates is seen as a negotiator and empathetic; while Zuckerberg is a critical thinker.

Of course, these legendary icons all share the same qualities. They are known not just for their technical skills, but also for the characteristics they each embody. These leaders are great influencers and serve as inspirations for thousands—millions, even—of people around the world.   

Personality traits or characteristics like your emotional intelligence, your communication skills and language abilities can be referred to as ‘soft skills’.

Startup, Start-Up, Notebooks, Creative, Computer

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Today, soft skills can outweigh or amount equally important to professional skills. Ask a hiring manager whom s/he prefers: a person who has a 3.96 GPA but lack in great communication skills or is air-headed; or an average candidate but has A+ personality traits and interpersonal skills?

Want to know what ‘soft skills’ you represent and how it can help your career? Here are 6 examples that guarantee career success.

Communication

Photo by Nick Karvounis

Regardless of what industry you’re in, communication is the key to success. We know it may sound cliché but it is the truth. Your GPA and technical skills will be overlooked if you’re unable to speak effectively and convincingly.

Both verbal and nonverbal communication are essential. Yes, you may have the idea or thought and able to put them into words but if your body language and communication gestures show otherwise, no one will listen and your message may fail to deliver. Body language is equally important and valuable as your verbal communication.

How can you become a better communicator? If you want to learn how to carry your words with conviction and have a huge impact, then consider developing your public speaking skills.  Public speaking gives great composure, million-dollar ideas and most especially, will help you develop a high-level of confidence in yourself. If you are looking for a great place to start, try ToastMasters International.

Listening

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One would think listening is an easy task, it is not. Everyone can simply pretend to listen but in reality, words come in the left ear and exit the other without any level of comprehension because the brain is too focused on something else.

You see, the best communicators are also great listeners. With your voice heard by people, you should reciprocate the kind gesture of listening to others’ ideas and thoughts.

Do give your full undivided attention to anyone you speak with. Remember and summarize what they told you, and they will be appreciative of the fact that you paid attention to them. Besides, you wouldn’t want anyone looking at their phones as you speak, right?

Giving and receiving criticism

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Constructive criticism, whether positive or negative, can drive you forward if you learn to receive criticism in the right manner.

If you find it difficult to take criticism in your stride, you need to learn how to as it’s inevitable and the only way to survive it is to convert that negative judgement to your own advantage.

When you receive criticism, do not take it personally. Most of the time, it is not a personal attack on you anyway. Think of criticism as a tip to empower you to make better decisions.

Do not point fingers and sugarcoat issues. Express your judgments in private and in a calm and professional demeanor. Also, acknowledge everyone’s input. Criticism, good or bad, are beneficial for you.

Relationship building

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Social skills, the ability to connect and build positive working relationships with other people, is important albeit often overlooked—especially in the workplace.

Working isn’t just about accomplishing tasks and receiving paycheck after paycheck as well as business isn’t just about making deals and providing 5-star service to customers. This goes beyond; it’s a constellation of human interaction.

Integrity

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Integrity has a price that’s either too high or too low— there is no in between. Acknowledging the good and especially wrong, speaking up for yourself and taking responsibility for your mistakes without putting the heat onto others; your reputation for integrity is of a great value.

If you are honest and the least you want is to make your name look better than others, chances are you’re more taken seriously than others. Earning other people’s trust and respect; without imposing it on them, makes you accountable and demonstrates your moral integrity.

Self-awareness

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Pay attention to your actions, words and thought process whenever around different groups of people. Surely you’re different when you’re around with friends, colleagues, family and your significant other.

Your way of speaking, behavior, could vary from person to person. You should be aware of your own actions and how should you appropriately behave and act whenever around people. Being controlling, passive-aggressive, defensive, and the likes will mark an impact on your personal and career profile. Be mindful of it.

In a highly competitive market, you should pack more than your resume and hard skills to ensure employability and pave your way to career success.

What other soft skills you think are essential to hone and will help improve your life and road to success? Share it with us!

About Chie Suarez

Aside from providing tips and hacks in personal and career development, Chie Suarez is also a resident writer for The Fordham Company — one of Australia’s top celebrity management companies and a major celebrity speakers bureau.

 

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