7 Soft Skills You Need to Be Successful

updated on 06 August 2021

According to research, employees who are successful have strong soft skills. With the rise of AI/automation changing the job market, 92% of talent professionals and hiring managers agree that candidates with strong soft skills are increasingly important. In fact, it could make or break hiring the perfect candidate as 89% feel that “bad hires” typically have poor soft skills. This was published in LinkedIn's 2019 Global Talent Trends report, an annual survey of hiring professionals which helps to inform how HR, talent acquisition and business leaders should approach their recruiting strategies for the coming year.

This suggests that you may be limiting your career development if you do not develop your soft skills.

Communication, collaboration, and conflict resolution skills are all soft skills. Soft skills are characterised by a combination of personality traits, behaviours, and social attitudes. It is not uncommon for individuals with powerful soft skills to possess strong situational awareness and emotional intelligence that helps them deal with difficult situations and still be productive. For leadership positions, this is especially important since good leadership often requires managing people and guiding them towards their goals.

Soft skills serve another purpose within the workplace in that they facilitate adaptability to changing conditions. Communication at times of uncertainty or collaboration with others when solutions aren't immediately obvious are essential skills for anyone, whether or not they have a leadership position. Since organisations receive a wide range of job applications, it isn't surprising that more effort is being put into assessing soft skills during interviews.

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Here, we explore a few key soft skills that you might need to learn in order to succeed in the workplace.

Problem-Solving Skills

The ability to solve problems can be defined as understanding a situation thoroughly, identifying the underlying issue, and finding a solution. All jobs are full of obstacles and stumbling blocks and that provides learning opportunities. It is your ability to formulate workable solutions and find answers to pressing problems that will demonstrate your ability to handle your job — and excel at it.

An important part of building a soft skills resume is discussing your mistakes and what you learned from them.

Emotional Intelligence

A person with emotional intelligence can perceive, evaluate, and respond to their own and other people's emotions. This means you are able to understand the world around you and the interpersonal relationships that occur in the workplace.

For the year 2021, this also takes on new significance. In the midst of the pandemic, there is a lot of stress, grief, and frustration. It is important that you are able to read your coworkers' emotions so that you can respond in a compassionate manner when faced with new work-from-home challenges or lost loved ones.

Leadership Skills

Almost all companies seek workers who can supervise other workers and direct them. Organisations need employees who can cultivate relationships at all levels throughout the company. Leadership involves assessing, motivating, encouraging, enforcing accountability, building a team, resolving conflict, and cultivating the desired culture of the organisation. Effective leadership can often be defined as the ability to influence people and address their needs.

Leadership training often involves developing soft skills.

Strong Work Ethic

Effort, loyalty, dedication — these are all attributes that constitute good work ethics. To excel in a role, you must be committed, enjoy the successes, be motivated by the challenges, and be great ambassadors for your organisation, both internally and externally.

A person with these qualities arrives at work on time, completes tasks on schedule, and stays focused and organised. Work is done efficiently and in a thorough manner. People with strong work ethics can work independently, but also follow instructions.


It is highly likely that most employees are part of a team, department, or division. Even those not officially part of a team often need to collaborate with their co-workers. Even if you prefer to work alone, it is crucial that you appreciate and understand the value of working together and collaborating to accomplish the company's objectives.

By doing so, you demonstrate the soft skills required for productive collaborations.

Communication Skills

There are five components to effective communication.

  1. Communicating verbally involves your ability to express yourself clearly and concisely.
  2. Body language and facial expressions are nonverbal forms of communication.
  3. Written communication refers to your ability to compose texts, reports, and other types of documents.
  4. Your ability to relay information through pictures and other visual aids is part of visual communication.
  5. Lastly, the ability to actually listen and understand others — active listening. Communicating effectively requires the ability to listen. If you lack strong listening skills, all communication will be one-way and unlikely to be successful.


It is impossible to ignore the fact that change is a major part of the modern workplace, even without the challenges of 2021. We constantly change our practices as technology advances.

Consider the recent changes we've witnessed. A large number of offices began doing part of their work remotely or completely. The trend of video conferencing has now become commonplace, as has the practice of working online and collaborating. To adapt to these things, workers have been forced to learn new methods, new technologies, and new thinking methods.

Because corporations have become increasingly decentralised and agile over the past decade, employees must possess various skills and demonstrate a willingness to take on responsibilities outside their comfort zone.

Many people underestimate the value of soft skills compared to hard skills. It is much more challenging to master them than technical skills.

Success requires both hard skills and soft skills. Unfortunately, formal education does not place as much emphasis on teaching and learning soft skills. With the help of professional coaches, you can work and develop these essential skills for success.

An Innade Coach can help you develop the soft skills you need to get ahead in your career. Try a free chemistry session with one of our Coaches today.

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