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Why Soft Skills are Essential in Your Technology Career

Why Soft Skills are Essential in Your Technology Career

In today’s rapidly evolving tech industry, the importance of soft skills in the field cannot be overstated. While the obvious technical expertise and knowledge are required and essential, those who also possess strong soft skills are being increasingly sought after and valued.


“Hard skills can help you get a recruiter’s attention, but soft skills can help you land the job.” 


And the numbers agree.

89% of recruiters say that when a hire doesn’t work out, it usually comes down to a lack of soft skills. Initi8 deals with clients from all over the globe, and we see this common trend daily. Clients are not just looking for the obvious hard skills of the role, they want a candidate who will collaborate with the team.

Let’s explore the importance of 5 essential soft skills and how they will contribute to your career success:

1. Effective communication

Clear and concise communication lies at the heart of successful tech projects. You are still collaborating with other teams to ensure you are all on the same page, whilst demonstrating understanding and helping to prevent conflict.

This also benefits greatly if you are looking to move into a team lead role, as you are comfortable encouraging team members to work together. According to a McKinsey survey, between 2019 and 2020, social and emotional skills like leadership and management became a bigger priority for most companies.

Consider this when communicating:

- Explain how and why. Sharing how something works and why it matters is essential. Translate a person’s needs and explain why they need a certain solution. 

- Know your audience. Understand that not all audiences “speak tech.” You should be able to adjust your tone and understanding based on who you are talking to. Consider using graphs, analogies and staying away from tech jargon to allow for clear conversations.


2. Collaboration and teamwork

Companies from all over the world are looking at their hiring more strategically to ensure they are developing more inclusive workplace policies. Because of this, teams involve individuals from diverse backgrounds, cultures and areas of expertise.

Having the ability to listen actively, share ideas and provide (and take) constructive feedback fosters an environment that encourages creativity, innovation and problem-solving.


3. Adaptability and flexibility

Technology is constantly evolving, and more so than ever evolving at a rapid speed. Being able to adapt to emerging trends and embrace change is critical within this field.

Being open to new ideas and approaches allows technology professionals to navigate uncertainty and stay relevant in an ever-changing industry.


4. Problem-solving and critical thinking

It’s soft skills like problem-solving and critical thinking that help professionals identify and address complex challenges. The ability to analyse situations, evaluate options and devise innovative solutions is invaluable in technology-related roles.

Effective problem-solving often requires a holistic approach, combining technical expertise with creativity, logical reasoning and the ability to think outside the box.


5. Emotional intelligence and empathy

It’s really easy to overlook the human element when it comes to technology. Having the ability to put yourself in the user’s shoes and understanding their needs is critical to delivering technology solutions that resonate.

Christopher McCann, CEO of AI-enabled company Current Health, said the worst products are created when it's clear designers/engineers haven't developed a solid understanding of their users. Being able to empathise with your users and understand their problems will make your work stand out even more and skyrocket your abilities and career trajectory.

Final thoughts.

These skills also help us build strong professional relationships with clients and colleagues. Asking for, and being open to, constructive feedback is essential to the development of soft skills. While asking for feedback may make you feel vulnerable, it’s one of the fastest ways to learn where and how to grow. Supervisors, managers and co-workers can all provide valuable viewpoints.

Whilst the technical side remains important, the ability to hone in on these soft skills and unlock full potential will allow you to have a more successful career where you can thrive in the industry and progress.



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29 June 2023