Mastering Communication: A Guide to Soft Skills Training 

The past few years have signaled a paradigm shift in the employment landscape.  

man wearing headphones while sitting on chair in front of MacBook

Unlike before, many recruiting firms today place a significant amount of premium on soft skills rather than only hard skills. Excellent communication and emotional intelligence are among the top soft skills that recruiters look for in prospective job candidates.  

Conducting robust screening during job interviews is the traditional way to ensure your employees possess the requisite soft skills. However, you can also impart these skills by conducting regular staff training.  

Here’s a guide to soft skills training at the workplace. 

What Is Soft Skill Training? 

Soft skills training is exactly what the term implies – training programs designed to teach soft skills. Commonly targeted skills include communication, problem-solving, adaptability, emotional intelligence, teamwork, and analysis.  

Soft skills are skills that relate to an individual’s behavior and personality. They differ from hard skills like data analysis and programming, which are industry- and role-specific.  

Soft skills training can impart to your employees the expertise required to optimize efficiency at the workplace. Such training is necessary for staffers in customer-facing departments like support and public relations. 

Why Do You Need Soft Skill Training? 

The benefits of soft skills training may vary depending on the targeted expertise. Notable perks include: 

1. Fostering Teamwork 

Soft skills training can foster teamwork in the workplace by helping to build a rapport among employees. These programs challenge coworkers to crawl out of their individualistic cocoons and participate more freely in collaborative projects. 

If properly conducted, soft skills training can strengthen interpersonal relationships among your staffers, improving overall workplace productivity. 

2. Improving Client Retention 

Poorly-trained support is a leading cause of low client retention rate. Many customers will happily switch brands at the slightest hint of unprofessionalism on the part of the support staff.  

Not only does your company deserve knowledgeable customer care representatives. It also needs personnel who can keenly listen to queries before responding confidently and empathetically.  

That’s another area where soft skills training can make a difference.  

3. Better Employee Retention 

Implementing robust soft skills training at your workplace can reduce employee turnover significantly.  

Most people prefer to work in environments where they feel appreciated. One way to demonstrate that you care about your staffers’ personal development is by providing them with valuable life skills.  

The employees will repay the favor by pledging unwavering loyalty to your company. 

4. Enhanced Problem Solving 

There are always problems to solve at the workplace. Whether arbitrating conflicts or brainstorming new ideas, these scenarios require maximum diligence and discretion.  

Taking your employees through rigorous soft skills training makes them better equipped to handle different office scenarios. They’ll be able to learn various problem-solving skills, such as empathic communication and perspective-taking.  

Soft skills training reduces the need to always rely on departmental leaders to have complex issues addressed.  

How Do You Conduct Soft Skills Training At Work? 

1. Identify a need for soft skills training. 

Virtually every employee requires soft skills training, regardless of whether they joined the company already possessing those talents.  

However, certain signs indicate a dire need for soft skills development. Examples include a demotivated workforce, incessant employee conflicts, and low client retention. 

2. Convene staff open forums. 

Open forums can help you uncover skill gaps that would normally go undetected. These events offer a platform for employees to ventilate freely. To make each session successful, urge every participant to suggest potential areas for improvement.  

If open forums are difficult to come by, you might consider approaching employees individually.  

Also, have a candid discussion with the human resource (HR) department to learn what soft skills are currently recommended in your industry.  

3. Pick a delivery method. 

There are three primary ways to undertake soft skills training. You could choose the traditional method of conducting face-to-face training, use a digital learning management system (LMS), or opt for a blended learning approach.  

Each option can be ideal under certain circumstances.  

Face-to-face training is suitable for small workforces. It provides a realistic learning experience where trainers can easily customize the lessons for each trainee.  

On the other hand, LMS is perfect for larger companies, especially those with overseas branches. Most LMS software utilizes video-based training models, allowing trainees to observe soft skills in real-life environments.  

Lastly, a blended approach provides the best of both worlds. 

4. Choose a suitable software. 

If you prefer the LMS approach to soft skills training, the next step is to choose the right training software.  

There are numerous options to explore. However, insist on a platform that provides many e-learning tools, including pre-build templates and video illustrations.  

You should also consider your budget and the project’s complexity before choosing the right LMS software. 

5. Make it a routine 

Soft skills training shouldn’t be a one-time or occasional event. Rather, it should be a regular or ongoing process. Remember that there will always be employees who need soft skills development.  

It’s also prudent to exercise patience, dispensing each lesson in bite-sized chunks. Don’t expect your employees to master soft skills overnight as that may adversely impact their day-to-day productivity. 

Final Word 

Soft and hard skills should be complementary rather than mutually exclusive.  

Employees’ soft skills determine how they apply their technical know-how and experience. It also helps to foster healthy staff relationships for optimal workplace productivity. Therefore, it’s imperative to schedule regular training that seeks to impart to  your employees the requisite soft skills. 

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button