The Need for ‘Human Skills’
By Liz Kruse, Director of the Institute for Professional Excellence
Most people value job security. But the reality is that the jobs we have now will look vastly different in five to ten years. As more work becomes automated, there are ‘human skills’ that will always be in demand.
Human skills, often referred to as “soft skills,” are far from soft. These skills are often hard – they are difficult to put into practice. Many people believe themselves to be skilled at communication, leadership, problem-solving, adaptability, and interpersonal skills – but the thing about these skills is that you’re never done learning and improving. We encounter countless opportunities to put these skills into practice, but it’s likely that if we sat down to reflect on whether we could have approached a situation differently or said something in a different way, we think of something we could have done better.
What often gets in our way of enhancing our “human skills” is that these skills have been reduced to mere buzz words that people sprinkle on their resume, discuss in job interviews, and add to their LinkedIn profiles. People start to assume they know everything there is to know about communication or interpersonal skills. Yet these aren’t skills you “gain” and then maintain for the rest of your life. Human skills must constantly be practiced, applied in various circumstances with a variety of people, and put under the microscope of self-reflection. We must unlearn bad habits, re-learn and refine best practices, and seek new opportunities to enhance our skillset.
Clarke University’s CareerPlus programming has many sessions dedicated to these human skills, giving you the time and opportunity for that reflection. Our affordable micro courses offer 15 hours of self-paced instruction that you can complete over the course of four weeks. By completing a course under the guidance of our dedicated facilitators, you’ll receive honest feedback and practical steps for improvement. Upcoming micro courses include:
CareerPlus offers a $25 discount to alumni who use the code 2021CLARKE at checkout.
MAY MICRO COURSES:
- Influence and Persuasion in the Workplace
- Data Visualization: Making Sense of All that Data
- The Effective Employee’s Toolbox
JUNE MICRO COURSES: (June 1-28)
- Be Seen: Developing Your Personal Brand
- Developing the Leader Within
- Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit
JULY MICRO COURSES: (July 1-28)
- Emotional and Social Intelligence
- Entering the Workforce: Basic Professional Skills
- Inclusive Workplace Strategies
- Navigating Change
Give yourself the gift of reflection this spring and develop your human skills. By committing to lifelong learning, you’ll be better prepared to adapt to the professional landscape no matter what changes lie ahead.