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by Jessica Holbrook on September 7, 2009 Do you know the difference between hard skills and soft skills on your resume? Well you better get acquainted real quick because it can be the difference between 10 interviews and no interviews, between a new job and no job. Think I’m kidding? Keep reading. I talk about this every day… probably a hundred times a day. Okay well not that many but every client I speak with I explain the difference between hard skills and soft skills and how they relate to your resume.
Hard skills describe processes, procedures, industry specific jargon and are easy to measure and quantify. They are terms such as; account management, talent acquisition and development, client retention, data management, project management, accounts receivable and payable, product support, and new business development. Soft skills are personality descriptors and people skills and not easily measured or quantifiable. They include terms such as; excellent communicator, great verbal and written skills, problem solving, providing support, listening, teamwork and more. The next time you’re sitting in a staffing agency ask your recruiter what terms they use when searching for a candidate for a specific position. I guarantee you they’re not looking for an excellent communicator. They can gather that from your phone interview. What they are looking for is someone with the necessary skills, expertise, and experience in the right areas – those hard skills we talked about. If your resume isn’t chock full of hard skills and industry specific keywords you are doing yourself a great disservice and costing yourself weeks if not months in your job search. Soft skills have a place too, but the best place is when the job description for the position you are seeking specifically asks for and requires those skills as a necessary and vitally important function of the job. I had one client about two weeks ago that was seeking a position in social services. This position had no hard skill requirements. Basically, they were looking for someone with GREAT people skills. This is the perfect time to flaunt those amazing people skills. These types of positions or job descriptions are few and far between. Most job descriptions are looking for hard skills and real world industry expertise. Pay attention to what the job description is looking for and tailor your resume accordingly. I can’t repeat myself enough, customization is key! Now that you know the difference think about how each relates to your resume and your job search and implement appropriately.
Hard Skills Vs. Soft Skills This article explains the difference between hard skills and soft skills. Do you know soft skills ? Never mind of your answer, if it is yes or no. As I will explain it a little . Soft Skills is about a lot of courses which talk about communication skills , presentation skills , body language...etc. Yes it means how to communicate, how to talk and how to express your self. But all of these ideas are mentally generated and then physically expressed. So they are converted.We need phyically generated ideas . And that is the first step of the new issue "The Hard Skills". Hard Skills are physically generated and then it will be physically expressed . So it is not converted . It is native . So until now you have only little information of Hard Skills . And Here is more information . Hard Skills have three phases . First step is to notice the physical action like walking , playing football , playing basketball , acting...etc. Second to get the idea of this physical action and list its components . List it in your mind or in paper. So after the completion of these two phases , You will be able to move to the third and the last phase in which you will do the "Ologization" . So what is Ologization ? I will answer it after the completion of the explanation of the third phase . The third phase is to use the ideas you get in the second phase in another physical field . It may be clear to some people .And it may be not clear to other people . As it need many article to completely explain Hard Skills and sure there will be a lot of examples . So now "What is Ologization ?" Ologization simply means " make it a science " yes MAKE it . Do you know the principle DIY? Do It Yourself . You will make a science . Or say a branch of science. Ologization is a noun consists of two parts "Ologi" which is the end part of many terms like Geology , Biology, Psychology...etc. And the second part is "zation" which is used to generate the noun from verbs or adjectives. Anyway the word is not so important . The important thing is " What does it mean ?" And the answer was explained at the beginning of this paragraph . and will be more and more explained in coming articles.
Hard skills represent the experience and education you have gained and will be very significant criteria to hiring managers but equally important are your soft skills. A candidate with the right soft skills has the potential to acquire the hard skills an employer may be seeking.
Soft skills represent personality traits, social graces, communication and include dependability, concientiousness and optimism. Here are a few examples:
DEFINITION Hard skills are specific, teachable abilities that may be required in a given context, such as a job or university application. Examples of hard skills include: facility with spreadsheets typing proficiency with software applications operating machinery software development speaking a foreign language calculus Other attributes, such as the ability to empathize with others or to remain calm under pressure, are sometimes known as soft skills.
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Soft skills is a sociological term relating to a person's "EQ" (Emotional Intelligence Quotient), the cluster of personality traits, social graces, communication, language, personal habits, friendliness, and optimism that characterize relationships with other people. Soft skills complement hard skills (part of a person's IQ), which are the occupational requirements of a job and many other activities. A person's soft skill EQ is an important part of their individual contribution to the success of an organization. Particularly those organizations dealing with customers face-to-face are generally more successful, if they train their staff to use these skills. Screening or training for personal habits or traits such as dependability and conscientiousness can yield significant return on investment for an organization. For this reason, soft skills are increasingly sought out by employers in addition to standard qualifications. It has been suggested that in a number of professions soft skills may be more important over the long term than occupational skills. The legal profession is one example where the ability to deal with people effectively and politely, more than their mere occupational skills, can determine the professional success of a lawyer.
Increasingly, over the last two decades, it has been recognized that when IT Professionals acquire soft skills, better relationships are built between IT and the other business units within the enterprise, fostering alignment. Soft Skills are behavioral competencies. Also known as Interpersonal Skills, or people skills, they include proficiencies such as communication skills, conflict resolution and negotiation, personal effectiveness, creative problem solving, strategic thinking, team building, influencing skills and selling skills, to name a few.
Hard skills vs soft skills. In the world of work, “hard skills” are technical or administrative procedures related to an organization’s core business. Examples include machine operation, computer protocols, safety standards, ﬁnancial procedures and sales administration. These skills are typically easy to observe, quantify and measure. They’re also easy to train, because most of the time the skill sets are brand new to the learner and no unlearning is involved. By contrast, “soft skills” (also called “people skills”) are typically hard to observe, quantify and measure. People skills are needed for everyday life as much as they’re needed for work. They have to do with how people relate to each other: communicating, listening, engaging in dialogue, giving feedback, cooperating as a team member, solving problems, contributing in meetings and resolving conﬂict. Leaders at all levels rely heavily on people skills, too: setting an example, teambuilding, facilitating meetings, encouraging innovation, solving problems, making decisions, planning, delegating, observing, instructing, coaching, encouraging and motivating. Obviously, people come to organizations with interpersonal behavior patterns already thoroughly ingrained, and they weren’t learned in a classroom. Instead, individuals learn how to deal with relationships and other life challenges “on the street” at a very early age. They observe how the people around them do things, they experiment, and they stick with what works for them. So everyone ends up with a unique portfolio of people skills; some behaviors may be effective, but others cause problems. By the time employees get to a training room, they’ve already worked hard for decades to reinforce the way they deal with people. Like all behavior patterns, interpersonal skills are “hard-wired” in the neuronal pathways of the cerebral cortex. This means that at some point a behavior was repeated often enough that neurons grew dendrites that reached out to other neurons to make the connections needed to make behavior pattern automatic. A myelin sheath coated the cells like electric wire insulation, making the connection extremely efﬁcient. The end result: these ways of behaving now feel natural, easy and comfortable.
The bottom line. Introducing a new interpersonal skill is extremely difﬁcult, because it means replacing the old skill. The brain may be an information processor, but it doesn’t work like a digital computer. There is no “delete” key for unwanted programs. Behavior patterns are physically established at the brain cell level. Any new pattern, even one that makes sense, even one that is desired and expected, will seem extremely awkward. The only way to replace an old pattern will be to establish a new one that gets better results. If this new pattern proves to be more satisfying than the old pattern, and if there’s an adequate period of reinforcement, there’s a chance that new connections will establish themselves. If the new pathway is a superhighway, it can become the preferred conduit, and over time even a familiar path associated with lots of memories will eventually fall into disuse, just like old Route 66. Ensuring success. Without this reinforcement, however, the pathways will not establish themselves, and most people will predictably fall back on the old, comfortable patterns they grew up with. Unfortunately, this disappointing scenario happens more often than not. An organization invests heavily in a people skills training program, no plan for reinforcement is in place, and the intervention fails to have the hoped-for result. There is virtually no return on the investment. The money is mostly wasted. This is why a program of lectures, group exercises and handouts—even a week-long course personally conducted by a world-famous celebrity author—cannot by itself provide enough reinforcement to establish the new pathways needed to change ingrained behavior patterns. Without reinforcement, even people who want to change are likely to return to their comfortable patterns, and so dysfunctional behaviors remain the same. If this happens too often, employees may come to feel cynical about people skills programs.
Frequent reinforcement. What an understanding of the brain teaches us about learning is that the only thing that can create permanent behavioral change is frequent reinforcement over the long term. If someone who truly desires to change an interpersonal behavior is supported by a knowledgeable coach’s ongoing encouragement, new patterns can be established. The most useful perspective on people skills training is that it’s an essential ﬁrst step—a necessary “introduction” to the right way of doing things. After that, ongoing reinforcement of desired behaviors has to be there. When a newly trained individual returns to a workplace, he or she needs knowledgeable coworkers to give ongoing feedback, guidance and encouragement. A proven solution is the top-down approach. If executives start by working on their own people skills, then they can establish the right expectations and coach their managers. An organization can employ executive coaches to ensure frequent feedback, encouragement and reinforcement. Managers can then coach their supervisors, who can coach their team members. To provide the desired motivation and accountability, it’s a good idea to assess people skills in advance of the training. By far, the easiest, most practical and effective way to do this is 360degree feedback, which was designed to provide a reasonably objective assessment of skills that are otherwise hard to observe, quantify and measure. Identifying the weak skill areas has two huge beneﬁts. For one thing, training programs can be focused on the areas of highest need, making the best use of limited training funds. Second, attendees will have a powerful motivation to change: the weak areas have been spotlighted, and a repeat assessment can be administered in the future to evaluate improvement. People can learn how to work well together. With an environment of support, encouragement and reinforcement, an organization can achieve the desired return on a considerable investment in people skills training. But executives really have to want it to make the right kind of investment. There’s no magic pill—no short cut. It’s like losing weight. If you really want to keep the pounds off, you have to establish
new eating and exercise habits. If you want lasting changes in your organization, you have to be willing to pay the price.