In today’s world of competitive markets and ever-evolving industries, solid tactical skills alone won’t cut it anymore. What will turn the heads of recruiters, bosses, and coworkers isn’t just a bullet point on a resume, it’s the feeling they get when they connect with you, it’s the follow ups and follow throughs, and it’s the clear line of communication that eliminates any gray area. It’s soft skills that are becoming the real differentiator.
We’ve all been there; a project has been assigned for a while and the due date is quickly approaching. Do we need a follow up? Has the responsible party started the project? Confirming receipt on projects, notes, and emails can give yourself accountability and the receiving end knowledge that the project is moving.
You Against You; Don’t Compare
Remember that your greatest competition is yourself. By using that as your measurement, you will continuously find success.
With so many communication channels: chats, emails, calls, zooms, and social media, try to communicate through the most efficient and effective approach. Is a conversation or meeting needed for clarification? Should it be virtual or in-person? Taking the time to match the ask with the corresponding team member and understanding their individual communication style can help work move along most efficiently.
In today’s ever-evolving digital age, we must differentiate not only ourselves from others, but ourselves from technology. It’s important to gain skills that can’t be replaced by machines like personability, understanding, empathy, and relatability.
Ask for Feedback, Relentlessly
We all could improve in some aspect of our lives, don’t be afraid to ask for things to work on. Not only does it help your growth, but taking initiative proves that you care about learning and improving.
Know Your ‘Sponsors’ and Show Up for Them
One of the best measurements of success is what people will say about you when you are not in the room. There are always those ‘sponsors’ that will be there for you, even when you are not physically there. Show up for those people, they are special and will aid in your long-term success.
Building relationships with people takes thoughtful listening and caring for the whole person. Connect deeper and take the time to really get to know your people. Not only will it help you perform better, but it also helps differentiate you in the eyes of your sponsors.
Regardless of the situation, maintain a positive attitude, approach, and interactions. Associate yourself with always being positive and people will naturally be drawn to your energy.
Honing in on your soft skills will distinguish you from the competition. Period. Being responsive, communicating, radiating positivity, and fearlessly showing up for those that show up for you are all ways to build meaningful connections, get the right kind of attention, and build your personal reputation for now and later.