People that hire purely based on skill-set and nothing else exist, but the numbers are so few. Perhaps the industry is too niche that these employers can do without the need for soft-skills in their employees. However, chances are the next time you venture out looking for a job or seeking the next potential client, you might need to have an arsenal of soft skills to further enhance your portfolio.
In a knowledge-based economy like Singapore, it is wise to have certain certifications in the industry you are looking to be in. For instance, if you wish to be in the finance industry, having the required accredited faculties back may give you a tremendous amount of advantage. However, that aside, it is also very important, yet oddly overlooked, to have a decent amount of soft-skills to aid you. The spectrum of soft skills range from Leadership to Communication – tools that are evermore important in differentiating yourself from the rest.
I sometimes think of job-hunting as a form of dating. You need to have a certain commonality with the person that is hiring you to be able to somehow get your foot in the door. Many dating veterans know that it is good to have the gift of the gab. Being able to carry yourself well in conversation not only demonstrates your skills, but also other subtle traits like wit and understanding the person you are talking with. Let me expand more on the latter. An understanding in this case is simply just knowing the needs (and wants) of the other person. For instance, if the person you are talking to has a tendency to beat around the bush, it would be beneficial for you to move in the same flow as they would, and not rush them. People tend to form cliques with those who are like them. Don’t believe me? Just look at your close-friend circles. They resemble you more than you know. To put it simply, it is knowing what the other person needs and to give it to them.
What should you do?
Well, working with various people over a long period of time would sensitise you to various behaviours. You would know better after some time what to say and what not to say in front of certain people. This is practice, and forms the bedrock of what you need to move up in the communication skill set ladder. Essentially, sometimes take a backseat view and look at why some people get along very well – it gives you a deeper understanding than you would think.
Constant practice gives you a suite of communicative skills that can be tapered on-the-go as you meet new people. It takes some time, but the effects can be seen almost immediately into the interaction.
Next, having an understanding of how you are like would go a long way. As a career specialist, I have found that if you go into a meeting without knowing how you behave (and operate), it would backfire on you. Knowing which facets of oneself to tweak, playdown or amplify would allow you to work the environment and situation to your advantage. That is also why we have several tools here to better allow our clients to know they are. These metrics are more than brief, but provide us more information and explanations on how to improve the careers of our clients.
Socialising to get a job or a client can be a difficult thing to do if we do it aimlessly, but that shouldn’t be the case anymore.
Drop us a message to find out if we can break the glass ceiling and get you further in your sales or into a new career!