Skills are the backbone of the corporate world- they are the very tool that builds a company. And thus, it isn’t a surprise that a person’s skill set separates one individual from another. It is this skill-set that makes a person an asset to any company. Even though we constantly focus on upgrading our skills, we often forget two particular types of skills – hard skills and soft skills- both of which are elemental for every individual striving to grow as an MBA graduate.
What are Hard skills and soft skills?
Before developing both these skills, we need to understand the basic distinction between hard and soft skills. Hard skills are skills that are acquired through education and experience. These skills are specific to the job and are technical. For instance, the hard skill required by a software engineer would be the knowledge of computer languages. The hard skill required by a PR executive would be the knowledge of Search Engine Optimisation.
On the other hand, soft skills are the ones that constitute the personality of an individual. This includes social skills, communication skills, adaptability, flexibility and many more. This forms the behaviour and traits of a candidate. With respect to the corporate world, you need to develop problem-solving abilities, empathy, integrity and creativity.
Importance of Hard skills and Soft skills:
Hard skills and soft skills are essential for your resume to help you get a job, but it is elemental for your growth in the company. Frequently it is observed that job requirements have a mixture of both soft and hard skills. We can often see companies asking for 2-3 years of experience in technical writing or knowledge in data mining. We can see that companies also mention skills such as ‘creativity or ‘good communication skills. Conclusion this is why cultivating both hard and soft skills is extremely important and profitable in the long run. It will help you land in a good company and enable you to climb the corporate ladder.
Methods to Develop Hard skills
There are several ways by which you can develop hard skills over some time-
- Online course and certification – The easiest way to gain knowledge in the digital age is through online courses, thousands of which are available on various skill development apps & portals. The benefit of doing an online course is that you can finish at your own pace by managing your work and get certified without any hassle. The most popular websites for skill development are Coursera, Udemy, Skillshare etc.
- Seminars and webinars are also a great way to learn about your field, as professionals often conduct seminars to disseminate information. These seminars give you a chance to learn the technicalities while creating networks with fellow participants.
- Practice- Like every other work in life, proficiency in any complex skill comes after years of practice. It is only after a repeated effort that you can finesse at a task, be it Python, C++, or data interpretation and branding strategies; the best outcome comes from regular practice.
Methods to Develop Soft Skills
- Build a positive relationship- Consciously creating positive relations with co-workers is very important for a healthy office. This does not only make you a positive addition to the company, but it also helps you know people and grow your connections more.
- Try to take up leadership roles- It is only after practising leadership that one can ace it. Thus, the more chances you get to be in a leadership position, the better to hone your communication and managerial skills.
- Take the initiative- Taking initiative is extremely necessary as it gives you a chance to improve your social skills and work on your confidence. Taking the initiative shows a driven nature that companies value all across the globe.
Thus, we can say that hard skills and soft skills are equally important in the workplace. You cannot thrive by merely holding the hand of only one side; you have to practice both, hone both and excel in both types of skills to make the most of every opportunity!
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