Leading economists predict that two-thirds of all jobs will rely on soft skills by 2030.
A lot of corporate organizations have started believing in the fact that Soft skills are the new hard skills. Although jobs are a combination of hard skills and soft skills, the later has become more vital, especially when it comes to the top leadership positions in an organization. Steve Jobs, during an interview once informed that there are no committees/groups at Apple, everyone works in collaboration and hence, employees must develop a sense of trust, empathy, and creativity.
In the modern-day, as more and more organizations start to work in collaborative environments, it is not the individual skills that matters the most. Rather it is the way they perform as a team, motivating other members and brainstorming with them. All this requires them to be able to think analytically, listen actively, and connect the dots.
What do you think recruiters look for in a candidate, these days? They already have excellent training programs planned for their new joiners, so how do they choose one candidate over another? Well, a lot of times, it’s the soft skills the candidate demonstrates, the ability to learn, be flexible, etc. Since we are no longer in a manufacturing-oriented environment, this makes much more sense. Everything can be Googled at the tips of our fingers, and we have advanced tools to do all the math, the only differentiating factor is how we deal with people, situations and realize the true potential of our respective organizations.
Now some might argue here that there are tools for collaboration as well, like Basecamp, Google Docs, etc. but the critical point to note here is that these tools only facilitate our collaboration efforts. They aren’t a replacement for missing our kindergarten lessons and holistic development.
Soft skills will not only help in getting our desired jobs but also help sustain them. Being flexible is one such skill that comes into the picture as organizations and their business models are rapidly changing. We have heard of the phrase that Change is the only constant, but the next generation is going to experience it.
Even other career fields, e.g., sports, require soft skills and mental strength to deal with their teams and the pressure of others. Resilience, stress management, and leadership are the most crucial soft skills any sportsperson needs to have. Remember what happened with David Warner and Steve Smith, the top Australian cricketers in 2018? No one has ever doubted their cricketing abilities. Still, with the ball-tampering, they failed to demonstrated leadership and hence led to one of the darkest days in the history of Australian cricket.
No matters what path our kids take in the future, from corporate, to media to sports to medicine, all aspects require them to have the right mix of hard skills and soft skills. These skills are not god gifted but get developed during the early stages of child growth and development. It is thus extremely crucial that we provide a healthy environment for children, which gives them room for developing these soft skills.