What are soft skills and how they contribute to professional development

What are soft skills and how they contribute to professional development

In an increasingly complex and competitive job market, technical skills alone are not enough for those who want to stand out. Soft skills have been appreciated so much – if not more – by companies and recruiters.

This does not mean that they no longer assess the technical skills of professionals, but it is not possible to focus only on that.

You still have doubts about what these so-called soft skills are and how you can develop and demonstrate them during Looking for a job? Read on and learn more!

What are soft skills?

Soft skills are the behavioral skills that we develop throughout life, so they are very subjective and personal.

In general, these skills are drawn from our personal and professional experiences and relate to the way we interact with people, communicate and deal with conflict and difficult situations.

What is the difference between technical skills and soft skills?

Technical skills are technical skills, such as fluency in languages, mastery of tools, and knowledge of specific areas or topics.

These skills can be acquired and proven by diplomas, certificates and experience records, for example.

Soft skills, on the other hand, because they are personal characteristics, are more difficult to acquire in courses and training. But that doesn’t mean it can’t happen!

Usually it is our own experience that helps us develop and strengthen our soft skills, but there are ways to develop or improve the ones that, for some reason, we have not developed so well all along. throughout our life.

The difference is, it takes even more dedication and time, after all, we’re not talking about learning to work with software. In this case, we would have access to a practical and detailed step by step. In the case of soft skills, it is necessary to:

  • do a self-assessment;
  • recognize your strengths and weaknesses;
  • observe people who have developed the skill you are looking for;
  • analyze how you communicate and what your interpersonal relationships look like and many other aspects.

Why are soft skills so important in the job market?

The market is undergoing transformations that are dramatically changing the way people work.

According to the estimates of World Economic Forum, in 2025, 85 million jobs could be replaced, while 97 million new roles, more suited to the division of labor between man and technology, could emerge.

Innovations such as artificial intelligence, big data and many other technologies and automations take on more technical and mechanical tasks.

But that does not mean that people will no longer have jobs, but that they will have to reinvent themselves and develop their soft skills to take on increasingly strategic functions, focused on management and problem solving.

It will be necessary (and already is) to live and work with machines and robots, in increasingly diverse, technological and even remote environments. And you can’t do this with quality without developing socio-emotional skills.

In other words, everyone will have to adapt: ​​who is looking for their first job, who is after professional replacement, in career transition or simply wanting to progress professionally.

The market has already noticed this and professionals must now demonstrate that they are prepared for these new functions.

Discover 9 foundational soft skills below and stand out in your career!

9 soft skills you need to develop

1. Creativity

Coping with a constantly changing environment and dividing the workspace with so many technological resources requires creativity offer innovative solutions.

In addition, it is often more difficult (if not impossible) for jobs in creative fields to be taken over by technology.

After all, creativity feeds on our experiences and knowledge accumulated over the years.

For this reason, recruiters look for highly qualified people with personal and professional backgrounds that will help companies keep up with technological developments and stand out in the market.

2. Persuasion

Being a persuasive person is interesting not only for sales people, but also for positions related to people management, marketing, and customer relations in general.

Knowing how to persuade people to understand the importance and value of products, services and ideas is not something everyone can do, let alone anyway.

Therefore, the persuasion it is a valuable skill for those looking to stand out professionally and take on new challenges.

3. Collaborative work

Work environments are becoming more and more diverse, which is extremely beneficial not only for companies, but also for professionals.

However, bringing together such different people in the same team is a challenge that companies face.

It is not for nothing that the team work it is one of the soft skills more and more valued by companies.

Knowing how to work together involves maintaining good relationships with colleagues, respecting differences, contributing to the growth of others and also being willing to learn from other people and points of view.

4. Adaptation

Remember the World Economic Forum estimate we presented earlier? Forecasts indicate that in less than 5 years, the way we work will change profoundly!

But that’s not new, right? These changes have been underway for some time, and the Covid-19 pandemic has only accelerated some processes.

Given this scenario, professionals need to develop their coping skills and also proactivity.

After all, it will be increasingly important to be able to adapt to new routines, processes and technologies, in addition to coming up with new strategies and solutions.

Society’s demands are becoming more fluid and to meet them companies need people who can manage change well and fit into different roles and environments as needed.

5. Good time management

To be more productive and efficient, you must also develop your time management.

It does not mean to do everything quickly, but to know prioritize tasks, optimize activities and organize the agenda to deliver everything you need with quality and on time.

Professionals who do not know how to manage their time well may find it difficult to manage several projects at the same time, which is an increasingly common requirement in the market.

6. Flexibility

Flexible professionals better manage changes in the working environment, processes and even the world and the market in general.

Companies are restructuring their operating methods, adopting more fluid rules, remote working, more autonomy in schedules and working methods, and more humanized and horizontal leadership.

Very rigid and unadaptable professionals may find it more difficult to fit in and stand out in such environments.

As companies that follow traditional processes are increasingly rare, develop your flexibility and ability to adapt to constant changes to advance your career.

7. Resilience

Especially in times of transformation and upheaval, it is difficult to achieve good results without a team that knows how to face adversity and move forward even in adverse conditions.

Resilience is exactly that: being able to cope with and overcome crises.

Resilient people are able to face difficult situations with more confidence, devise strategies to minimize damage, and reinvent themselves whenever necessary.

It is a skill highly sought after by recruiters and it is not always easy to find it among professionals.

8. Leadership

The trend is towards the increasing automation of more operational positions and leadership and the direction increases and becomes even more strategic for the companies.

Therefore, one of the most popular soft skills in recent times is the ability to lead people.

In this case, we’re not just talking about having a team, defining processes and giving orders.

Being a leader means, among other things:

  • act with empathy;
  • know how to communicate;
  • contribute to motivation of people;
  • ensure that they have the necessary tools, resources and knowledge to perform their duties;
  • serve as an example;
  • involve them in the activities and culture of the company, etc.

9. Negotiation

Think about how many negotiations it takes to complete a single task. Deadlines, values, delivery format, resources …

Whether you want to lead a team, work with colleagues, chat with clients, run your own business, or hire services and suppliers, you’ll need to negotiate.

The integration of technology in the most diverse working environments, despite many advantages, also contributes to what, already urgent, becomes “for yesterday”.

Neither you nor your company will be able to meet so many demands without assessing the possibilities, making the terms more flexible and having good negotiations.

Therefore, being a negotiator can open the door to more strategic and important opportunities in companies or even guarantee a more successful future entrepreneur!

Develop your soft skills and prepare for the future!

General skills are essential for professionals to be able to integrate into this almost rebuilding labor market.

Technical skills are still very important, but in technological and accelerated scenarios, they can quickly become obsolete.

Therefore, people must be prepared to retrain knowledge, adapt to new processes and manage crises. In addition, of course, to dividing space productively with machines, technologies and people – each with their differences and contributions.

Do you want to know more about labor market trends and forecasts? So find out what are the jobs of the future and get ready!

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