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Soft Skills Every Student Should Learn

Updated: Nov 17, 2022

Many of the formulas required to solve challenging mathematics issues may already be known to your students. They could be able to memorize a lot of knowledge, and they might even have persuasive arguments for and against certain political systems.

Will they be successful in the workplace with these skills, though?

  • Definitely Not

  • Yes

  • Not Sure

According to research, more than 90% of employers believe that soft skills are at least as important as hard skills like technical expertise. Employers and recruiters around the world criticize the absence of soft skills among graduates, which are necessary for success in the workplace but are rarely included in the curriculum.

Employers said communication skills are the number one thing they look for in a potential employee (65 percent). They ranked teamwork second (59 percent), self-motivation third (58 percent) and problem-solving fourth (54 percent).

According to the LinkedIn 2019 Talent Trends research, 89% of talent experts and recruiting managers believe that "bad employees" often lack the necessary soft skills, while 80% believe that these talents are becoming more and more crucial to a company's success.

Additionally, graduates and employers evaluate these skills differently, with students placing a lower value on soft skills than do employers when compared to technical skills.

What exactly are soft talents, and why are they so crucial?

Soft skills are abilities that may be used in a variety of jobs and industries. They are also referred to as life skills, core skills, employability skills, or 21st century talents. Helping our students build soft skills allows them to comfortably work in any context, engage with anyone, and handle any difficulties they face while continuously learning and improving professionally in an era where what we teach them in school can be outdated by the time they graduate.

The following are some crucial soft skills that students should master before entering the workforce:

1. Communication Skills

Although effectively communicating a message may seem simple, communication challenges are often the root of workplace troubles. Relationships may suffer as a result of a communication breakdown or misunderstanding, which could wind up costing the firm a lot of money and time. Students can learn to adjust the way they speak to their discussion partner if they can understand how they prefer to communicate as people and how this might differ from the communication styles of others.

2. Intercultural Skills

Many of our students will find themselves working or studying in teams with individuals from various cultures, nations, or regions, as well as individuals of various ages and educational backgrounds. They could have different values and views than our students, which would cause them to act differently. The ability to examine and comprehend one's own behaviour and practises, as well as those of one's counterparts, is the key to developing good intercultural competence in our kids. This goes beyond the superficial lists of dos and don'ts found online.

3. Critical Thinking Skills

It is more important than ever for kids to be able to make observations, inquire about, understand, and assess all they read and see in an era of fake news and misinformation. The ability of pupils to listen with an open mind and discern the logic in ideas they disagree with is another aspect of critical thinking. The ability to reason and reach reasonable conclusions is made possible by critical thinking abilities, which encourage logical and analytical thinking.

4. Interpersonal Skills

We all know that Relationships with supervisors, coworkers, suppliers, and clients are crucial in the workplace. Employees with strong interpersonal skills can forge connections, influence others through negotiation and persuasion, handle conflict, and foster a more enjoyable workplace. Social skills, trust-building abilities, persuasive abilities, and conflict management abilities are all examples of interpersonal skills.

5. Decision-Making and Problem-Solving Skills

The ability of students to make decisions based on information provided and solve issues creatively stands alongside their critical thinking abilities. Students will be required to handle challenging situations and make wise decisions more when they are given greater responsibilities in life. We must assist our pupils in making logical justifications for their selections and in objectively weighing the many options.

6. Creative Thinking Skills

The ability to think creatively and recognise things that are not immediately obvious goes beyond simply creating art or inventing new products. In an IBM survey, 60% of CEOs said that innovation was the most crucial leadership attribute for corporate success. In a world where computers are replacing more routine jobs, this is not surprising.

7. Leadership and Teamwork Skills

Project management and leadership are closely intertwined. In the modern world, project team members might collaborate electronically or from the same physical place. Collaboration amongst different people can be challenging, and each team member can perform better in their assigned job if they have a clear knowledge of the team's objectives. A good leader is one who can modify their ways to bring out the best in everyone, even though the expectations of the various team members may range greatly and so may be the manner in which they choose to contribute to the team.

8. Listening Skills

Although many of us appear to be listening, we are actually planning our responses for when it is our turn to speak. Any relationship, whether it be one with a client or a coworker, requires the ability to actively listen. If we entered most conversations with a closed mind, already knowing what we want to say and what we want to hear, it would simply be a waste of time.

9. Self-Awareness

Learning to reflect on oneself and be aware of oneself is the first step in developing soft skills. Our students can only begin to identify areas for development and work toward making improvements when they become conscious of how they communicate, establish rapport, make decisions, handle conflict, and listen.

10. Resilience and Flexibility

It is natural for people to make mistake and fail. But what differentiates young people is how they respond to failure. They will continue to grow and never stagnate if they have the fortitude to get back up and try again, the adaptability to learn from their mistakes and modify their behaviour to fit the many situations they encounter.

11. Project Management and Organisational Skills

The amount of project-based work has increased for both independent contractors and full-time employees, making the ability to contribute to successful project teams more important than ever. The ability to plan, organise, manage activities, track deliverables, complete required documentation, evaluate team performance over time, and use the necessary web tools or software to manage the project and the team members are all essential project management skills.

12. Emotional Intelligence and Empathy

Students must understand that their emotions can influence the choices they make. Rough decisions and strained relationships can be the result of unchecked rage, emotional outbursts, and defensive responses. They can benefit from being sensitive to other people's emotions and perspectives in their future interactions with coworkers.

Exlcareer provides individualised courses that include a good amount of interactivity among students through workshops or group projects. These are intended to help pupils communicate better and develop other soft skills. Click here to learn more about the different programs.

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