Many companies focus their recruiting and advancement policies on hard skills – accounting, sales, manufacturing piece work, construction trades, and so on. It’s easy to focus on these skills because their output is measurable. Training courses and certifications also help to mark quantifiable progress in these employee’s careers. However, recent studies have shown that the following seven “soft skills” are a better marker of success for an employee:

Communication, Leadership, Negotiation, Integrity, Teamwork, Adaptability, Listening
(some employers add an 8th -- Punctuality!)

Most hard skills training are only put into practice 25% of the time in daily work, whereas soft skills are used every day in every interaction within a company. Furthermore, according to the Harvard Business Review, emotional intelligence – the ability to learn and apply empathy, organization, and leadership – is malleable. The development of emotional intelligence is nearly limitless.

As a company approaches hiring and advancement criteria-setting, adding in the consideration of soft skills may help build a better-functioning place to work.

DII is a partner to employers in attracting and retaining excellent employees through robust, customizable benefits programs. We are here to help you keep your best employees happy and engaged with their place of work.

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