Have you ever considered the strength of your soft skills?
They’re critical to future-proofing your career, particularly if you’re aged 30 or under.
And the 2016 Australian Census has revealed just how critical they are, highlighting the huge transformation in the job market over the past few generations that has left a record number of young people unable to find work.
That’s because a year 12 certificate is no longer enough to secure employment, university courses are failing to keep students abreast of technological changes, and the widespread advance of automation means many entry-level jobs are being swallowed by robots.
And that’s why soft skills are emerging as a new must-have for young people looking for employment.
So what exactly are soft skills? How can they protect you from the disruptions caused by changing technologies and, most importantly, how can you gain them?
Also known as transferrable skills, soft skills generally cover the things machines can’t do – like collaboration, teamwork and creativity – and they’re becoming more and more in demand.
At TrainSmart Australia, many of our courses incorporate units that focus on developing soft skills – ones that are highly transferrable between different roles in various industry sectors.
Here’s five of the most important soft skills you’ll need to get a job in the future, and how to gain them:
Why it’s important: Leadership is one of the most sought-after skills among employees in a workplace.
Why? Strong leadership skills show confidence, the ability to take responsibility and take charge of a situation, and excellent interpersonal skills. On top of that, good leaders can motivate staff and boost morale almost more than anything else – even a pay rise – which means they’re extremely valuable to a business.
How to gain it: Our Diploma of Leadership and Management is the perfect way to develop your leadership skills. From managing teams to leading projects and beyond, you’ll learn the essentials of how to manage relationships, build influence and develop emotional intelligence.
Why it’s important: The value of strong written and verbal communication skills in the workplace cannot be overstated. They allow you to build relationships with co-workers, actively listen to others, project professionalism and clarify expectations – all of which ultimately means you’re in a stronger position to deliver high-quality work and therefore be a high value employee.
How to gain it: At its core, the Diploma of Community Services is all about learning the most effective communication strategies to help people improve their lives – ones you can easily transfer to any job.
3. Collaboration and teamwork
Why it’s important: The success of a business hinges on how well employees work together to achieve its objective – no matter how well each person works on their own. Good teamwork skills also make you a more desirable job candidate because it means you’ll help contribute more positively to the work culture.
How to gain it: Our Diploma of Business Administration teaches a broad range of skills that allow you to flourish as a team member in any business.
Why it’s important: No matter what you do or where you work, you’re guaranteed to run into problems at some point. That’s why strong problem-solving skills are highly valued: they mean you’re ready to competently handle anything that comes your way, which could save your future company a lot of hassle – and money.
How to gain it: The Diploma of IT (Networking) teaches you how to troubleshoot complex problems – both specific to the IT industry and beyond.
5. Time management
Why it’s important: Good time management skills are key to managing your workload and meeting deadlines. With these skills, you’ll accomplish more with less effort, make better decisions and control stress better.
How to gain it: Because projects are always bound by schedules and deadlines, the Diploma of Project Management will help pick up the critical skills that will allow you manage your time better – no matter the situation.