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The Hard Truth About Soft Skills

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Today our organizations have to move faster than ever before. Getting our organizations to move fast, means the systems in our organizations have to function smoothly, without friction. And when it comes to creating value, there’s no more important system than our people systems. Because businesses don’t create value, people do.

But how do you remove friction from our people systems? How do you get our people systems to function more smoothly to produce more value. It all comes down to learning how to optimize around soft skills. If hard skills are like the cogs in the machine, then soft skills are like the oil that makes those cogs work together smoothly. If you have all of one, but none of the other, than the system will break down.

Join us in this practical webinar where we break down the difference between hard skills and soft skills. You’ll walk away with a solid understanding of not just what soft skills are, but why they’re so important today, and what’s more, a practical checklist for how to start making soft-skills optimization a part of your HR processes.

Published in: Recruiting & HR
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The Hard Truth About Soft Skills

  1. 1. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com The Hard Truth And why they’re critical in today’s organization. About Soft Skills
  2. 2. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Rusty Lindquist Vice President, Thought Leadership BambooHR Michelle Reed Chief Marketing Officer SkillSurvey
  3. 3. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Hard Skills Skills that are learned to perform a specific job function and are more easily identifiable and quantifiable. Mostly about “what you know” VS Soft Skills Skills that are less tangible, and more associated with one’s traits or personality, that determine how we interact. Mostly about “how you act”.
  4. 4. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com EQ Emotional intelligence (EQ) is the “something” in each of us that is a bit intangible. It affects how we manage behavior, navigate social complexities, and make personal decisions that achieve positive results. Emotional intelligence is your ability to recognize and understand emotions in yourself and others, and your ability to use this awareness to manage your behavior and relationships. Travis Bradberry Author, Emotional Intelligence 2.0
  5. 5. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Soft Skills: What are they?
  6. 6. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Where hard skills are about the what, soft skills are about the how.
  7. 7. The Rise of Soft Skills & Why They Matter Now
  8. 8. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Hiring Managers Want More * Source: CareerBuilder Flexible 51% Self Motivated 66% Strong Work Ethic 73%Dependable 73% Positive Attitude 72% Team-Oriented 60% Organized 57% Works Well Under Pressure 57% Effective Communicator 56% Confident 46%
  9. 9. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com 77% of employers believe that soft skills are just as important as hard skills. Almost 20% said they were more important than hard skills. According to CareerBuilder
  10. 10. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Resign yourself to this reality: 46% of newly hired employees will ultimately fail within 18 months * Source: “Hire for Attitude” Forbes, January 23, 2012 † Source: “Hiring for attitude: Research & tools to skyrocket your success rate” Mark Murphy, Leadership IQ, 2012 89% for lack of soft skills – such as professionalism or ability to get along with others
  11. 11. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Innovation: The keystone of differentiation
  12. 12. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Competitive Abundance GLOBALIZATION has shrunk the world TECHNOLOGY has leveled the playing field LOW ENTRY BARRIER has increased startups @Rusty Lindquist
  13. 13. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Differentiation decay
  14. 14. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com
  15. 15. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Focus on Who You Are PEOPLE Relentlessly attracting, inspiring, and empowering great people. CULTURE Creating a great place to work, so great work can take place. @Rusty Lindquist
  16. 16. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com | @RustyLindquist
  17. 17. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Ram Charan Best-selling Author, Business Advisor
  18. 18. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com
  19. 19. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Soft Skills are the truest predictors of success. Professionalism Interpersonal Skills Problem Solving and Adaptability Personal Value Commitment Managing Others Leadership Proficiency in a short list of competency areas, which focus on soft skills, are the true predictors of success in almost every job
  20. 20. Hiring for Soft Skills
  21. 21. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Step 1: Use job descriptions to communicate required soft skills
  22. 22. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Identify the soft skills that matter to the position you’re hiring for • Talk to your hiring managers about what they look for when they’re building a team • Discover what behaviors make those teams work—and fail • Take a look at competitor’s job descriptions to see how jobs are being positioned • Rely on experts who’ve already done the legwork of researching job-specific behaviors • Use job descriptions to communicate the required soft skills and detail what you’re looking for 67% of HR managers say they’d hire a candidate with strong soft skills even if hard skills lacking.
  23. 23. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Step 2: Source talent from places known for cultivating soft skills
  24. 24. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com • Look to your competition or even across industries to companies with similar organizational cultures • Source creatively • Employ popular channels already used by candidates to help increase job advertising reach and applicant volume • Encourage your current employees to share job posts to their social networks • Good people know other good people: leverage your current employee’s networks – including their references and referrals – to find top talent Source talent from places known for cultivating soft skills
  25. 25. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Step 3: Include high priority soft skills in recruitment campaign messages
  26. 26. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Recruiting Campaigns
  27. 27. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Recruiting Campaigns
  28. 28. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com “Nice work. Well done. Mazel tov. You’ve made it to Google Labs and we’re glad you’re here. One thing we learned while building Google is that it’s easier to find what you’re looking for if it comes looking for you. What we’re looking for are the best engineers in the world. And here you are.” Recruiting Campaigns
  29. 29. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Step 4: Pay attention to red flags
  30. 30. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com • Hiring the wrong person can cost a company time and money • Watch for red flags which might indicate a candidate lacks the traits or behaviors you identified as essential for the role Pay attention to red flags!
  31. 31. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Step 5: Prioritize soft skills in the selection process
  32. 32. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Prioritize soft skills in the selection process. • Review job letters, resumes, and CVs for examples of soft skills in action • Practice behavior-based interviewing to uncover a candidate’s past performance and behaviors • Update the rubrics you use to evaluate candidates
  33. 33. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Traditional Interviewing Poses theoretical questions Examples: • Describe your strengths and weaknesses. • Describe what you liked about your last job. VS Behavioral Interviewing Explores a candidate’s past performance and behavior Examples: • Describe a situation where others you were working with on a project disagreed with your ideas. • What was the most challenging customer problem you had to solve and how did you solve it?
  34. 34. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Rubric/Matrix
  35. 35. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Culture First Following a national survey of job seekers and HR professionals, 43% said that “cultural fit” was the single most important determining factor when making a new hire. -Millennial Branding & Beyond.com
  36. 36. VALUE VALUE VALUE CHANNEL CHANNEL CHANNEL
  37. 37. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com 18th Century 19th Century 20th Century 21st Century Agricultural Age (farmers) Industrial Age (factory workers) Information Age (knowledge workers) Conceptual Age (creators and empathizers) Affluence Technology Globalization High Low Abundance Automation Asia Dan Pink A Whole New Mind
  38. 38. THANKYOU BambooHR You’re invited to Elevate Virtual We will contact everyone within the next few days to set this up. Receive a free trial of our software SkillSurvey The largest online HR conference, totally free, totally amazing.
  39. 39. The Hard TruthAbout Soft Skills bamboohr.com skillsurvey.com Rusty Lindquist Vice President, Thought Leadership BambooHR Michelle Reed Chief Marketing Officer SkillSurvey Questions

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