Developing Your Soft Skills

Being able to type 80 words per minute or knowing how to put
together a PowerPoint presentation are valuable skills to have, but technical
abilities arent the only ones you need to be
concerned about. Interpersonal, orsoft, skills are equally valuable in todays workplace. Demonstrating qualities such as empathy,
humor and tact are critical whether youre
meeting with a potential client or explaining to your manager why the company
should consider having a blog on its website. Here are some tips for developing
the less-technical aspects of your skill set:

Be appreciative. Always be
willing to provide praise or words of encouragement to others. Thank coworkers
who help you complete a project or who simply do something thoughtful for you.
And avoid taking sole credit: For instance, did you work on a high-profile
project in which a coworker frequently pitched in? Acknowledge his or her
contributions to your manager and colleagues.

Be enthusiastic. Which type of
person would you most like to work with: someone who clearly loves her job and
encourages others to excel or an individual who constantly complains about his
responsibilities? Keep this in mind when evaluating your own work style. An
upbeat attitude will not only improve your relationships with other team
members, but it also can help as you pursue future opportunities.

Be a team player. Is a colleague
working on two major initiatives that must be completed by next week? Offer to
help out if youre not overloaded yourself.
Assisting overwhelmed coworkers builds camaraderie – and also makes it more
likely they will help you the next time youre
buried in work.

Heard in
the LunchroomSM is provided by Robert Half, the
worlds largest specialized
staffing firm and a leading authority on workplace and management trends.  For
more information, visit

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