Hard skills versus soft skills
There is a maybe not so popular quote, ‘you hire for hard skills and fire for soft skills.’ As one of my lecturers would rightly say your ability to deliver efficiently and effectively, the knowledge you’ve gained during your university days is what will keep your job for you in the long run. The world today is systematically shifting from paper certificate to what you actually have in your head and able to deliver. When it comes to work skills it can be broken down to two types, which is hard skills versus soft skills.
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It is imperative to note one does not supersede the other in the contemporary world employers. However often times focus is being made on the hard skills rather than on both as the combination of the two would form a well-rounded job applicant. To say hard skills prevail over the soft skills or vice versa wouldn’t be right as they are both needed in the work environment. The focus on hard skills is due to the fact that these ones are measurable and quantifiable compared to soft skills.
Hard skills are concrete skills that are specific to your job. They are teachable and measurable. They are easy to define and more practical. They are learned from school gotten from an academic degree, course or training we managed to finish and the knowledge we gain, other practical skills verified by test and certificates. For example, if you are a chef, cooking will be your hard skill or as a lawyer, getting your degree. They are more objective.
Soft skills are sometimes referred to as people’s skills. They are interpersonal knowledge. They are most times related to emotional intelligence and how we perceive the world and other people. They are hard to measure. They are the ones which people pay less attention to as we are not able to learn them at school or go through a course on how to gain them. To develop your soft skills is to stay around positive minded people, read books, exposure and the likes. They are developed over time through experience and exposure. Examples of soft skills are empathy, time and project management, leadership, communication skills, creativity, people management, and the likes.
The importance of these two cannot be over-emphasized either an entrepreneur or as an employee. whichever you eventually settle with, there will always be the need to relate with people as much as you will also need to know your job. `