Top 4 Soft Skills
Due to the written element, communication can be considered both a hard and soft skill. Communication, at its core, is the lifeblood of your business. While communication is not your business plan, it is absolutely paramount to have team members who not only effectively understand the business plan, but can verbally replicate it to clients and coworkers. Communication seems like a no-brainer. After all, we all talk and write to one another throughout the entire day. Yet communication has varied facets and several nuances that require study and practice to hone. Thus, communication—especially negotiation—is more than just opening our mouths and saying words, it is a skill and a skill be taught, learned, and improved.
The delegation of duties is often a delicate spot for business owners, especially small business startups. Trusting someone with your brain child isn’t easy, but the truth of the matter is simple: extra hands make for less work. The more minds you have working on various tasks, the more time you will free up for yourself and for collaboration with your partners to take your brainstorm from inception to completion. Choosing when, who, and how to give certain projects to can be a challenge. For some tips on how to wisely delegate as a leader,
The saying goes, “You can’t know where you’re going if you don’t know where you’ve been”. One of the chief aspects of goal-setting is taking into account how you got to where you’re sitting right now. Are you in a good place financially? Have you followed the business plan? Where have you, or one of your employees, dropped the ball? What steps were taken to remedy that situation?
Once you have a solid footing on where you are standing, you can then begin to look ahead at your projects and determine where you want your business to be financially, socially, and branded by next quarter, next year, in the next five years, etc… You can also begin to look at your company’s core values and see how to implement them in new innovative ways to lead your team to new heights.
Company morale is a distinctly important aspect to business success. Knowing how to be a good disciplinarian is necessary, but 90% of the time, employees need positive reinforcement and incentive in order to keep them going. Think of this from a Pavlovian perspective. In this experiment, dogs were conditioned to associate a bell with the reception of dinner. Your team should learn to associate your presence with praise, inspiration, and a call to personal growth. Get to know your team members as people first and employees second. Learn what drives them and makes them valuable assets to your team. Instead of threatening them with disciplinary action, engage their passions to help them see the benefit in the work they do. Even when they are delegated a small, mundane task, in time, they will begin to see the benefit they offer the company by receiving your sincere, positive attitude toward the work they produce. As they begin to improve themselves, you can also offer them projects and promotions which best suit their personal ambitions.
Mastery of soft-skills is a mastery of life skills. Every business owner or employee wishing to make a difference must be well-versed in their people skills. Remember, the business world is more than just clients, negotiations, spreadsheets, and 9-5. It is a world filled with people, some ambitious, some shy, some happy just where they are. The key is to get to know these people for who they are both inside and outside of the office. This will give you the ability to work with them in the fullest capacity and motivate them to be the best they can be. The greater your team, whether you’re the boss or a team member, the stronger your business will thrive.