Candidates who have ‘soft skills’ – otherwise known as people skills – are a valuable addition to the workplace and can be invaluable to the success of a company.

Soft skills are generally seen as personal attributes, like negotiation, networking, conflict resolution, and teamwork that represent a high degree of emotional intelligence and can dramatically alter business relationships and general communication.

They’re different from so-called hard skills, which are seen as more technical or quantifiable attributes that directly correlate to the type of job. For example, typing speed would be considered a hard skill for a secretary.

Here’s a brief list of some of the most important soft skills you should be looking for in potential hires to help set yourself up for success.

  • Communication: Smart employers always want staffers who understand how to communicate with others in the office and outside clients. Good communication skills mean people can speak clearly and succinctly in-person, over the phone, and in writing. As an employer, be on the lookout for those who have good listening skills, as that’s often a tell they are also a strong communicator.

  • Positive Attitude: Attitude can sometimes be ignored in the workplace at the expense of other ‘harder’ technical skills. Employees with a positive disposition are a joy to be around and will become especially beloved during times of high-stress or in a fast-paced working environment. Be on the lookout for prospective employees who demonstrate a high degree of energy, enthusiasm, cooperation, and respect.

  • Critical Thinking: Any job is going to require some critical thinking skills, and employers always want candidates who can come to an informed decision about a situation or issue after thinking about it. Creativity, observation skills, and adaptability are powerful soft skills that will continue to be vitally important in the upcoming years.

Are you interested in cultivating your soft skills or the ones of your employees? Some of the best ways to do so include collaboration with a mentor who can model soft skills, joining courses like Toastmasters that emphasize communication, or even hiring a coach that can teach important skills quickly.

Curious about how you can find and hire employees who have strong, soft skills? Our team here at FirstOption Workforce Solutions is more than happy to help you recruit candidates who have the people skills and emotional intelligence needed, along with ‘harder skills,’ to serve as real assets to your company.

To learn more, speak with FirstOption Workforce Solutions today at 210-733-3700 or contact us online.