“Research conducted by Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation and Stanford Research Center has concluded that 85% of job success comes from having well-developed soft and people skills, and only 15% of job success comes from technical skills and knowledge (hard skills).” – National Soft Skills Association
Candidates seeking new positions that haven’t had much work experience need to familiarize themselves with the mantra: People like to do business with people they like and trust. At the end of the day, employers may have two candidates with equally sound resumes. The interview is an opportunity to understand which candidate fits the culture of the company. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou
Harry Beckwith and Christine Clifford Beckwith wrote a book titled, “You Inc. The Art of Selling Yourself.” They elaborate on the notion that people buy feelings. Employers select a candidate emotionally and justify logically with their portfolio. The idea is that it would behoove you to brush up on your soft skills before entering your next job interview.
What are soft skills? Webster defines them as, “personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people.” Essentially, soft skills are the ability to connect with another person through communication.
It’s important to note that communication is 93% how you say it and only 7% what you say.
We can break that down further to mean 55% is body language, 38% tone, and 7% the words you say. It’s important to be self-aware of the non-verbal cues you give off.
Soft skills are the ability to have personal accountability. Will you take the initiative? Soft skills are the ability to work in a team, communicate effectively, and problem solve. They are competencies around being coachable and flexible. Work is about relationships; hence, we hope your next interview reflects examples of times when you took the initiative to complete a task or handle an urgent issue.
Ultimately, employers want to feel your excitement for the company. They want to feel your confidence to do the job well and most importantly they want to feel comfortable bringing you on to the team.