Soft skills are individual attributes that enhance and influence how one works. Soft skills reveal who someone really is and how they operate in the workplace. Hard skills are technical skills and test your knowledge, while soft skills are personal qualities and behaviors that show how you utilize your hard skills. Soft skills develop and evolve over time, making them relevant and highly sought-after by hiring managers. Continue reading for a list of the top soft skills employers value and the importance of these skills so you can excel in your job search or career.
Top soft skills for job seekers
According to LinkedIn the top in-demand soft skills of 2022 include but are not limited to:
- Adaptability: Flexible to changing environments like learning something new or change
- Communication: Ability to quickly share ideas
- Critical Thinking: Ability to think critically
- Digital Literacy: Someone’s ability to quickly adapt to new technology
- Time Management: Skills in a fast-paced environment
- Taking Initiative: Meeting expectations and going beyond them
- Teamwork: Essential to prove you can effectively collaborate with others
- Leadership: Shown in many ways even if that means stepping up in a team project
- Being proactive: Quick to solve problems before they occur
Other soft skills that continue to develop over time include networking, lifelong learning, self-care, emotional intelligence, confidence, and resilience. These skills are constantly changing and expanding.
Importance of soft skills
Soft skills enable an individual’s ability to work with others and navigate their environment. Employers closely pay attention to these skills as they are just as important as the job itself. Soft skills come from experience and are learned over time. Everyone is constantly building their soft skills inventory through new findings and experiences which is why these skills are so increasingly important to an organization’s success. In LinkedIn’s Global Talent Trends report 92% of talent acquisition professionals reported that soft skills are equally or more important to hire for than hard skills. And, 89% said that when a new hire doesn’t work out, it’s because they lack critical soft skills.
Disadvantage of soft skills
The one drawback to soft skills is that they are unquantifiable. You can find them listed on a resume but can’t see how an employee truly performs these skills until put into effect in an interview or work environment. In the past, hard skills were desired over soft skills until time showed the importance of both. LinkedIn’s Workplace Learning Report cited soft skills as the top training priority and 59% of U.S. hiring managers believe it’s difficult to find candidates with the right soft skills. Soft skills are essential but an ambiguous set of skills to hire for.
Soft skills should be highlighted in a resume to show employers what you are capable of beyond just your knowledge. Include these soft skills listed above when updating your resume!