When we apply for jobs, it’s common for us to highlight our technical skills: coding and development skills, experience with certain software, or statistical analysis. But where technical skills might help you meet the basic requirements of a job, soft skills are the ones that help you actually clinch a job or advance in your career.
Soft skills are often defined as interpersonal skills, communication skills, problem-solving skills, and other abilities of this nature. Companies often invest in technical training, but studies show that investing in soft skills training might have an even bigger impact on the success of a company.
Let’s take a look at three reasons why your company should invest in soft skills training for its employees:
- Soft skills training increases workplace productivity.
In a recent study from Boston College, Harvard University, and the University of Michigan, researchers found that a group of workers that was given soft skills training was 12% more productive than the group that did not receive the training. The training also improved the retention of employees. Nine months after the study ended, the training helped generate an almost 260% return on investment.
Soft skills training can help you increase your own workplace productivity and employee retention by empowering employees in their work life.
2. Soft skills training will help prepare your employees for leadership positions.
While employees in entry-level positions might not have the need for intense soft skills training, individuals preparing for management or leadership positions definitely do. A report by iCMS Hiring Insights which surveyed 400 HR and recruiting professionals found that 58% of recruiting professionals believe soft skills are more important for leadership positions than entry-level positions.
From this same survey, 94% of HR professionals also believe that workers with strong soft skills have a better chance of being promoted at a company than an employee with more experience but weaker soft skills.
Skills like communication, problem-solving, emotional intelligence, and active listening are crucial to developing employees that are managing people at your company. In fact, 50% of employees leave their job because of a bad manager. Investing in soft skills training for your rising leaders can not only have a huge effect on their success in managerial positions but also on the job satisfaction of employees who work under them.
3. Automation is taking over a lot of industries.
In response to the increasing automation in many industries, 95% of people believe they need new skills to stay relevant in their jobs. According to Accenture Strategy’s Harnessing Revolution: Creating the Future Workforce report, 86% of American workers would invest free time to learn new skills to stay relevant. Top skills articulated to stay relevant included the ability to change and learn, and judgment and decision-making skills.
The report details a need for employers to really invest in “re-skilling” their employees. This includes investing in soft skills training. Arming employees with these soft skills – skills that cannot necessarily be mastered by robots or computers – is crucial to empowering employees with the skills they need to be successful.
Are you ready to invest in soft skills training for your employees? Verb specializes in soft skills development with collections and activities centered around topics like giving and receiving feedback, non-verbal communication, and accountability. Verb is a low-cost monthly subscription that delivers on-demand soft skills training to your employees.