IT Best Practices

12 Soft Skills Every Tech Worker Needs

Maybe people have talked a little too much lately about the importance of soft skills in IT. But then again, as long as the stereotype persists that IT workers are a bunch of anti-social gremlins, maybe we should keep talking about soft skills anyway. In an article for IT Business Edge, Sue Marquette Poremba outlines all of the domains where tech workers should develop soft skills:

  • Empathy
  • Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Listening
  • Reading and writing
  • Customer service
  • Curiosity
  • Humility
  • Leadership
  • People skills
  • Time management
  • Sense of humor

The Tender Touch

Frankly, these are the sorts of skills that would be of benefit to anyone in any line of work. There are opportunities to practice and push these skills every day. And some of them, like “curiosity,” are something you should just have by default:

“Curiosity and fearlessness are essential qualities that I look for in every candidate,” said Christopher Ensey, COO of Dunbar Security Solutions. “When I interview people, I always ask what their hobbies are. If they have interesting hobbies – those that involve lots of little tiny parts and opportunities to break things and they always end up with a screw left over, or those that require a certain level of challenge and instill a little fear — those are good hobbies that expose or train a certain type of mindset. In a field like technology that’s always changing, that mindset is invaluable.”

For other skills, you can take more pointed steps toward improvement. For instance, consider reading and writing. Every time you send an email, or every time you are describing some feature you have built, stop at the end and ask yourself: Does this make sense? Could I have said this in fewer words? Am I abiding by grammar rules that reasonably resemble the English language? People often take competent writing for granted, but they instantly notice when something is written badly—because they do not understand what they are reading.

For a full explanation on the rest of these skills, you can view the original article here:

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