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“Soft skills are overlooked too often. Anyone or any company looking to grow and/or find their place in their respective market is wise to make developing these skills their main growth strategy”, shared a leader on LinkedIn.
“I absolutely agree with the statement,” chimed in Watchen Nyanue, CEO of I Choose the Ladder. “Soft skills allow you to connect with your colleagues and employees as humans first,” she said.
“Once someone feels seen and [that] you care about them as a person, they will work harder for you — and ultimately, for the company.”
“There is no point in being the smartest person in the room if no one wants to listen to you,” said David Bach, vice president of talent acquisition with DroneUp, adding that companies are looking for “persuasive influencers” who are also “understanding and empathetic.”
This includes the ability to be an active listener and the patience to take the time to understand the bigger picture — while at the same time being able to clearly outline expectations and responsibilities, he said.
Just ask Warren Buffet who once stated, “You can have all the brainpower in the world, but you’ve got to be able to transmit it. And the transmission is communication.”
Leaders across the board agree, kindness is the real foundation to a good soft skillset — and is important both in business and in life.
As a business leader, Bach offered this advice: “Always be kind, professional and empathetic. People generally don’t leave jobs because of money, schedule, commute, etc. Lead people the right way and they stay with you and will follow you.”
Tamiko Cuellar, International Business Strategist and Speaker, says love is the most important component of a successful business, and believes it’s possible to have genuine love for those you lead without sacrificing the goals of your business. Here she shares:
8 Ways To Lead With Love
1. Show appreciation. Private and sometimes public acknowledgments of your team’s accomplishments and efforts can go a long way.
2. Offer encouragement. If you notice someone is struggling, offering a kind word can be just the boost they need to keep going despite the challenges.
3. Be understanding and flexible when possible, but have firm boundaries. Set the expectation of excellence, but be sensitive when your team members communicate being overwhelmed.
4. Have a listening ear. There is nothing worse than a leader who barks orders and has no regard for hearing the concerns facing their team. Listening also promotes idea-sharing and innovation. It demonstrates that your team is valued.
5. Keep the lines of communication open. Create a safe space for open communication. Having a team that feels too intimidated to share the challenges that affect their work performance will not serve you or the organization well.
6. Train rather than criticize. Your staff will fall short of your expectations at times. If you notice they are struggling to meet the demands of their roles, offer support in the form of training. Approach the discussion from a “help me to help you” position rather than only telling them how they failed.
7. Offer support in times of overwhelm. When there is open communication and trust, a team member will not hide when they are stressed. In a faith-based environment, pray for and with your staff. Ask what you can do to help them better manage their workload.
8. Ask how they are doing, and really mean it. Even when your team is doing well, they want to know that you actually care about them as people. They know when you only care about work performance.
If you’re serious about advancing your communication skills and making an investment in yourself, we invite you to our Excellence in Speaking Institute. Classes in 2023 are already filling up quickly! We look forward to helping you power up this power skill!
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