Years ago I worked for a SAN software (and hardware) Engineering company. I taught SAN software engineers how to rack and stack the equipment, how to configure a switch and other equipment such as storage arrays and blade servers during a 5 day class. I also taught a 2 day class called “Consulting 101”. In this class the engineers would learn how to talk to the client, how to escalate a situation that they could not handle and practice various situations through role plays. One of the engineers stated in a very frustrated voice, “I’d rather take a month of technical classes than a day of this people stuff!” All of the other engineers agreed with him. WOW!!! I had no idea that these “soft skills” were so difficult to learn.
I ran across an article by Lei Han Soft Skills List – 28 Skills to Working Smart that defined and listed soft skills that we all need in the work environment. He grouped these skills into four groups that we all need in our work life. These skills and attitudes mirrored Daniel Goleman’s emotional intelligence model and the 15 factors in EQ-i Bar-On model. The 15 factors of the Bar-On model – – Reuven Bar-On . I added the last group – gratitude attitude because I think this is lacking in most organizations. It is a skill/attitude that we can learn and develop; it can make a true difference in our lives and the lives of our colleagues.
- The ability for Self-Management. We all know those people who “lose it” in the workplace. Sure, all of us have our breaking points but usually we can manage our anger, behavior and emotions. Being aware of and able to identify feelings is the first step to perceive and accept ourselves. Knowing our strengths, personality and preferences helps us to get along with others in the workplace.
- People Skills include Communication Skills and the ability to get along with a team. This is critical in any work environment but tech environments seem to be more team oriented these days. Gone are the days when one person was in charge of all of the IT in a company. Now there are customer service support teams, help-desk teams, server teams and teams to trouble shoot. Leadership is also included in this area of people skills.
- Work Attitude is the willingness to learn and loyalty to the organization. We all know people with great attitudes at work. We want to work with them, to talk to them when we are having a rough day and wish we had their attitude. These are the people who are not Polly-Ana and dream of rainbows and unicorns but realistically optimistic and helpful.
- Professional Attitude includes what we expect from people in the workforce each day. Dressing professionally (for the work environment), getting to work and meetings on time, common courtesy. Not, people who think that the workplace is an extension of their (dysfunctional) family where they are the “boss” and can do whatever they desire.
- Gratitude Attitude is the ability to appreciate all people in your workplace. To appreciate your job, team, boss and organization. This is not the rewards and formal recognition program that many organizations boast about but the ability of each person to sincerely look out for the other. To help, support, encourage, uplift and inspire others.
This is a great list for technical professional who wish to advance in their careers. Having the proper soft skills and attitudes can lead to leadership opportunities, leading a team or department. It can also work for non-techs as well. I try to develop these skills and attitudes as I work with different groups and teams. Not only for them but for myself. So, instead of learning the next new tech app today, try on a new attitude or soft skill!
Originally published at https://wordpress.com/post/largblog.wordpress.com/529
#softskills #tech #Peopleskills #emotionalintelligence