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News article10 August 2022European Labour Authority, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion

Strengthening your soft skills doesn’t need to be hard

Working effectively with others involves various soft skills, including communication, time management and problem solving. While it might feel like these skills come naturally for some people, you can boost them in a number of simple ways.

Strengthening your soft skills doesn’t need to be hard

1. Seek feedback

It can be difficult to be objective about your own work. Ask trusted colleagues who you collaborate with regularly to provide short feedback. For example, three strengths and three areas for improvement. An appropriate time to do this could be at the conclusion of an important project, or in the run up to a performance review. This can help you to pinpoint the soft skills you need to develop further.

2. Learn from others

Try and model the behaviour of those who you enjoy working with the most. Think about what it is about a particular colleague or client that makes them so great to work with. Perhaps they are great at remaining calm under pressure, or maybe they give really useful constructive feedback? Whatever it is, aim to introduce it into your own approach to work.

3. Take part in training

Use any spare time you may have in your workday to take part in online training and build your soft skills. LinkedIn Learning, for example, offers a Learning Pathway on ‘In-Demand Professional Soft Skills’, while Udemy provides a course on ‘11 Essential Career Soft Skills’.

4. Practice in your free time

Take part in a person-facing activity to practice your soft skills outside of work. For example, join a sports team, or volunteer for a local charity. Practice makes perfect, after all, and this can provide a great opportunity to put your skills to the test in a less pressured environment.

5. View ‘mistakes’ as opportunities for reflection and development

Use moments when things don’t go to plan as a chance to reflect on how you can avoid or minimise the same issues in the future, and adjust your behaviour accordingly. This will help to ensure that you continually develop and improve your soft skills.

In partnership with EURES, the European Job Mobility Portal.

 

Related links:

LinkedIn Learning Pathway – ‘In-Demand Professional Soft Skills’

Udemy – ‘11 Essential Career Soft Skills’

 

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Articles are intended to provide users of the EURES portal with information on current topics and trends and to stimulate discussion and debate. Their content does not necessarily reflect the view of the European Labour Authority (ELA) or the European Commission. Furthermore, EURES and ELA do not endorse third party websites mentioned above.