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Soft skills are important and overlooked qualities that are usually ignored at the workplace. Soft skills help people perform in a cohesive and harmonious manner when part of a group at their workplace. These skills are important for a person to grow and progress in the organization or company that they are employed with.
An organisation can use their learning management system (LMS) to help improve their employees soft skills to tackle obstacles, people, and changing work conditions.
Definition of Soft Skills
When a person applies for a job, they usually review the job criteria to understand what skills are needed for this position. For example, a teacher needs teaching credentials, a manager needs business skills etc. This kind of criteria is termed as hard skills and are directly related to the job the person is applying for. Hard skills are given importance in employment recruitment ads, as they are an essential requirement for job positions. To acquire hard skills a person can take classes, learn from books and be an apprentice in a workplace.
Soft skills on the other hand aren’t specialized in the truest sense, but are equally essential to acquire. Soft skills are also termed as professional or transferable skills, and are more generic in nature. They focus on an individual’s attitude and intuitive skills. Some examples of soft skills are listed below:
- Communication skills
- Leadership skills
- Teamwork skills
- Problem solving skills
- Creative skills
- Adaptability skills
- Critical observation skills
- Critical thinking skills
Soft skills are also known as emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence alludes to an individual’s awareness, how they can constrain their emotions and express it in situations. Soft skills plays a big role in how individuals manage and handle their personal relationships.
Benefits of Soft Skill Training
The benefits of soft skills training are as follows:
Good and Effective Communication:
Any form of miscommunication directly impact a company’s profits. An employee who speaks and writes effectively and well helps improve the company’s image and so that their message is understood and can be quickly acted upon.
Time Management Skills
Efficient employees are usually better at time management , end up accomplishing more at the workplace. Improving scheduling habits has a positive impact on the overall work culture in the organisation.
The more organized employees are, the more efficient they are on a daily basis. Improved efficiency ratios also leads to better customer satisfaction rates.
Learning how to set goals are very essential for a company to move in the right direction. Realistic goal setting skills allow employees to successfully follow through on their plans for the future. This also increases the likeliness of meeting company-wide goals.
There may be times when an employee needs to share information with a group. If an employee is a good and effective presenter, he or she will be able to convey their message without confusion so that their audience can act on it.
Ability to Adapt
Employees that are resistant to change can have a negative effect in an organisation. Thus it is very essential that employees learn to be adaptable so they can thrive in the organisation, while creating a positive effect,/span>
Problem Solving Skills
Many employees face problems on a daily basis. If a company has staff that can deal with such problems effectively, it helps to lower and decrease any negative effects that arise from such situations.
Less Job-Related Stress
Employees that bond well together usually experience lower stress levels at the workplace. This helps in preventing employee burnout, depression etc.
5 Ways to Develop Soft Skills with Your LMS
Teaching an employee to create a report or dispatch a shipment is extremely easy. There’s are a series of fixed protocols the employee has to follow to complete that task. Soft skills on the other hand are not as predefined and tangible. An organization can use its LMS to improve and strengthen the soft skills of its employees by using the different features present within. The following five ways in which a company can use their LMS to develop soft skills are stated below.
The Creation of Collaborative Tools to Infuse Teamwork
All LMS platforms nowadays offer collaborative tools such as file sharing, virtual meets, etc. Such interactive features offer options to a company’s employees to discuss and collaborate on their ongoing projects, schedule their meetings. LMS systems offer employees the option to work as part of a group even when they aren’t based in one location. This kind of teamwork helps to build trust wherein each employee within the group learns how to accomplish their goals individually as well as collectively to complete the project.
Inspiring Creativity Through Whiteboards and Forums
Creativity is one of the attributes that separates the movers & shakers from the fence-sitters in the corporate world. Most learning management systems always incorporate features such as whiteboards, which allow trainees to collectively work with their team members to discuss ideas by sharing notes, slides, sheets, and drawings. The LMS gives them the option of taking their conversation beyond just the verbal or written. The trainees discover new methods and ideas of letting their creativity flow and improve by using these features.
Simulations & On-the-Job Training Situations
A modern day learning management systems come equipped with features like simulations that mimic on-the-job training processes. Simulations allow a company to create real word situations that test an employee’s training and thinking without putting customers, resources, or other employees at risk. This teaches the employees how to assess the pros and cons of different work situations they will face. The more decisive and sharper an employee’s critical thinking skills get, the better they become at making good decisions for the benefit of their organization
Learning Communication Skills with Social Learning
Communication skills are essential in every industry vertical. An LMS platform helps improve and hone a trainee’s communication skills by using social learning. Social learning comes with features such as news feeds, user-generated content, Q&As, chats, ratings, reviews, etc. It teaches employees different ways to engage, practice, and improve their communication skills in a safe and contained environment.
Setting up Goals Based on Soft Skills
The setting up of goals is considered an important aspect to run a successful business. Every organization must find a way to monitor their employee’s progress to ensure that their business goals are achieved. An LMS comes equipped with performance-related features that allow L&D managers to monitor the progress of the employees and assign milestones to them. These goals encourage employees to improve their performance. For example, measuring customer satisfaction will help an organization assess an employee’s communication skills. An increase in productivity indicates how an employee has learned better time management.
An organization’s LMS helps them measure soft skill success by studying and assessing changes in sales trends and figures, the turnover and attrition rates, the customer feedback being received, and safety and security statistics.