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Let’s talk #QVT: Why do companies have to invest in soft skills?

20 Dec 2018

  • Feelings
  • Management
  • Quality Of Work Life

Let’s talk #QVT: Why do companies have to invest in soft skills?

Soft skills refer to emotional intelligence. A real “buzz” term of recent years in the field of HR, they are in addition to technical skills and in the face of work transformation (automation, robotization, artificial intelligence,…) constitute, or even will constitute, a differential. What are the main behavioural competencies? What interest do companies have in taking an interest and investing in these new skills?

Some examples of soft skills

Lei Han lists 28 behavioural competencies critical to career success, which she divides into three domains:

  • Self-management: concerns the way of perceiving oneself and others, managing emotions and reacting to conflict situations (self-confidence, resilience, patience, etc.)
  • Interactive: refers to the way of interacting with others (communication, teamwork, interpersonal relationships, etc.)
  • Tribal: refers to inner knowledge from mentors or from professional experience (negotiation, influence, ability to deal with complex personalities,…)

For the company, it is important to identify the useful soft skills according to:

  • the mission entrusted to the candidate or employee
  • the employees already present
  • the identity of the company

In 2018 according to LinkedIn, the 5 main soft skills are:

  • Flexibility
  • Ability to adapt to the company’s culture
  • Collaboration
  • Growth potential
  • Prioritization

A lever of well-being for companies

According to an Oxford study on the future of employment, 42% of current jobs will disappear within 20 years. As a result, individuals and companies must rely more on the ability to acquire new skills than on skills that have already been acquired because they are potentially obsolete.

“Unlike technical skills, it is not possible to delegate behavioural skills to robots.”

Thus, developing soft skills in companies means investing in skills that the company will always need tomorrow, unlike technical skills that evolve over time and require a significant investment when it comes to maintaining control.

According to the Malakoff-Médéric 2017 study, 53% of managers and 49% of employees place the atmosphere and quality of relationships between colleagues at the top of the list of criteria for workplace happiness. Thus, promoting the personal development of its employees is a challenge for companies.

Fostering relationships with others in the company has led to the emergence of a new form of management: benevolent management. The latter involves paying more attention to others and building solidarity among employees.

Improving the Quality of Life at Work requires the use of these behavioural skills in order to vary them, to value them and to give them meaning in relation to the company’s mission and identity.

Sources :

Faut-il développer les « soft skills » des salariés ?, https://revolution-rh.com/faut-developper-soft-skills-salaries/

Bouret (J), Hoarau (J), Mauléon (F), 2014, Le Réflexe Soft Skills : Les compétences des leaders de demain, Dunod

Frey (C.B), Osborne (M), 2013, The future of employment: how susceptible are jobs to computerisation?, https://www.oxfordmartin.ox.ac.uk/downloads/academic/The_Future_of_Employment.pdf

Les métiers, talents et soft-skills de 2018 selon Linkedin, HROne, http://www.hrone.lu/actualites/les-metiers-talents-et-soft-skills-de-2018-selon-linkedin

Lei Han, Soft skills List – 28 skills to working smarter: a list of soft skills you needf, https://www.psoda.com/global/blog/28-skills-to-working-smarter-a-list-of-soft-skills-you-need-by-lei-han/

Étude 2017 Malakoff Médéric sur  la Qualité de Vie au Travail, http://www.malakoffmederic.com/groupe/media/presse-actualites/espace-presse/Malakoff-Mederic-etude-QVT-2017.htm

Bien-être au travail : les soft skills au coeur des facteurs qui le déterminent, https://www.docendi.com/blog/bien-etre-au-travail-soft-skills-au-coeur-facteurs-qui-le-determinent/

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