How Social Skills Boost Career Growth

Jun 11, 2024 | Business

Hard skills are competencies and knowledge that are job-related. They are invaluable in your career and should be expanded on throughout your tenure; however, soft skills are equally important and may outweigh the benefits of hard skills when it comes to advancing in your career. Here’s why-

Hard skills focus on what you do in your job and are specific to the work you do. Soft skills are personal qualities that influence how you do your job and are transferable to every type of job as well your off-duty success.

Social skills often become the deciding factor for career advancement or major success as a small business owner or entrepreneur.

Social Development is Different from Personal Development

At first, it may seem like social development is the same as personal development but they are uniquely different. Personal development is the inward focus on oneself to better understand who we are, and how we think and operate.

Personal development emphasizes a better understanding of what motivates us, how we manage ourselves and our time, and ways to improve our thinking and behavior.

Social development is an outward focus and considers how we understand ourselves in relationship to others, especially in the workplace. Social development includes improving competence in areas such as:

  • Teamwork and Teambuilding
  • Social Engagement and Awareness
  • Giving and Receiving Criticism
  • Leadership Skills
  • Open-mindedness and Inclusion
  • Written, Verbal, and Non-Verbal Communication
  • Assessment Skills

and more

The higher your social competency, the more likely you’ll be perceived as highly effective in the workplace.

Social competence has six important aspects:

  1. Effective Communication Style
  2. Community Building/Teamwork
  3. Conflict Resolution Skills
  4. Self-Control and Self-Esteem
  5. Curiosity and Open-mindedness
  6. High Threshold for Discomfort or the unknown

In the same way we are naturally more capable in certain personal and professional aspects, each of us is usually more competent socially in one area than another. This creates the opportunity to dive deeper and expand our competency socially.

Closing any gaps or learning new skills socially can be one of the easiest ways to experience success on and off duty. Great social skills not only benefit the workplace but nearly every other aspect of community.

Be Mindful About Social Competency

Emphasizing social competency is a fast track to success. Be mindful of areas you could benefit from more education or experience and incorporate them into your career goals. Examples could be: Lead a team project two times per year, practice active listening during client meetings, take a class on conflict resolution.

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