Soft Skills Training Tips For L&D – Employees are worried about machines replacing their jobs. As computers get better at thinking, they are starting to do lots of jobs that people used to do, like helping customers and working in warehouses.
According to a study by McKinsey Global Institute, by the year 2055, up to half of the tasks people do at work could be done by machines. This might sound scary, but in the future, AI could do jobs like stocking shelves, making websites, or diagnosing diseases. However, there are some things machines can’t do, like soft skills.
So, L&D and HR managers should learn some soft skills training tips to use them in employee training.
Soft Skills: What are they?
For instance, LinkedIn found the 5 most needed soft skills for this year, they include: Creativity, persuasion, collaboration, adaptability and emotional intelligence.
Even if a boss doesn’t know what “soft skills” means, they can still recognize when an employee is not good at things like being on time, following directions, and talking to coworkers. This employee might be good at their job, but they struggle with these important skills.
Before, the manager might have thought the employee was hard to work with, and then fired them. Then they would have hired someone with the right skills like planning, following directions, and talking well. You don’t need to choose between having strong technical abilities and strong interpersonal abilities, because interpersonal abilities are not just a natural part of someone’s personality.
Training the Skills
Just like you can teach your employees practical skills, you can also train them in people skills. Training people to work together requires a different method than informing them about new company rules.
But it can be done by understanding that your employees aren’t naturally good at communication or coming up with new ideas.
Someone, like a family member or teacher, taught your most creative employee to be creative. Someone showed a tough employee how to keep going even when things get tough. Someone showed your best communicator how to effectively communicate with their colleagues.
Things like talking nicely, good listening, convincing others, and being on time make your workers easy to work with. It can be hard to tell if these are just part of their personality or skills they have learned.
However, even though they can be taught, it is often better to teach soft skills by showing them through your own behavior.This can also happen at work, when you receive coaching or mentoring.
They work closely with their team to help them improve, which means they talk to each employee individually, show them how to improve their social skills, and give them personal feedback.
Workers often trust their direct boss’s opinions about their people skills more than anyone else’s. If someone from HR gave feedback about emotional intelligence or communication, it might be taken as an insult. Managers can show their employees how to improve their soft skills through coaching and leading by example.
Chance to Practice
You can’t just teach a lesson or a seminar on communication or creativity and think that the team will become fully creative and communicative. Soft skills are like a muscle that you have to work on to make them stronger.
Allow them to practice during work and create a safe environment for them to make mistakes while practicing.If you’re teaching people to work together, it might mean getting small groups of employees to work on projects often. If you’re teaching employees how to be adaptable, tell them to try new things even if they might not succeed.
The article suggests that employees should be encouraged to share new ideas and try different approaches when starting a big project.
Add Soft Skills in the Course
When talking about the importance of soft skills, it’s not very effective to just lecture people about it. But it’s important for employees to understand that soft skills can be learned and improved, instead of thinking they are just a part of who they are as a person.
Luckily, this type of learning material is easy to find and doesn’t have to be made by your L&D department.
Taking courses to learn about soft skills can be really useful if you’re practicing and getting guidance, because they support the things you’re learning at work about soft skills with more information about those skills.
As more jobs are done by machines, it’s important for people to focus on improving their social and communication skills. This is important for both workers and companies.
Although machines are good at some things, soft skills like creativity, working well with others, being able to change, and understanding emotions are still really important.