Being successful in our careers is a normal and natural expectation. All of us agree that the opportunity to succeed in our career or position requires a combination of technical skills and soft skills. Irrespective of your industry or position soft skills influence the way you interact with your team and senior management. All of us have experienced some version of a highly skilled co-worker who sought advancement, but that goal remained elusive.
Many organizations do not always adequately articulate their desire or the importance of certain soft skills in their job descriptions or include screening for them. This leads to a talent pool that may not meet future job promotion requirements.
Here are three soft skills that are essential for career success.
Emotional Intelligence – Often, very talented individuals are consider very accomplished in their specialty, but seem to have a reputation of alienating coworkers and rubbing team leaders and managers the wrong way. This is a sure-fire way to ensure that team members will not want to work with you. That’s where your emotional intelligence quotient, or EQ, becomes a factor. Most would agree that a team leader who makes a sincere effort to understand the motivations and the concerns of their team members can more easily establish and maintain credibility and influence with their team. This ability will help to choose the important priorities and deftly manage tricky situations.
Integrity – Professional integrity means that we do not hide or blame mistakes and oversights on others. We must also promptly follow through on promises and action assignments. Some may consider the changing of a decision based on new information as indecisive, but honesty and humility are components of integrity. Your reputation for integrity inures benefits because your associates understand that you are honest and objective. For this reason, your associates and team members will take you more seriously because you are known to make fact-based decisions, after gathering all available information. All of your associates will at least acknowledge that you have been objective, even if they do not totally agree with your decisions or positions.
Receptivity to Feedback – At some point, we have all worked with someone who easily and quickly became defensive if someone made a suggestion for a change in a procedure or project. Feedback plays a crucial role in decision-making and converting problems into opportunities. Effective team leaders must be able to accept feedback and respond appropriately. Effective leadership depends on motivating our teams to give their best effort and attitude. Every time we work through the process of accepting a suggestion or analyzing that a change may not increase productivity, we develop our skills for adapting our techniques to various situations and different team members.
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