Today’s global marketplace is complex, unpredictable and ever evolving. Change is occurring more drastically and at a faster pace than in recent history, and according to research from the World Economic Forum, 35 percent of skills required for workplace success today will be different by 2020.
Unfortunately, most leaders are not developing fast enough or in the right ways to be effective in this new environment. Technical aptitude and business savvy are no longer enough to meet the demands of the role, and top-performing organizations are quickly recognizing the need to develop a strong pipeline of up-and-comers capable of leading people to deliver business results amidst change and uncertainty. To face the challenges of the coming decades head-on, leaders must become more adept at collaborating, driving accountability, inspiring employee commitment and moving organizations forward.
There is nothing “soft” about the skills needed to connect well enough with employees to lead them effectively through both periods of stability and transformation. Soft skills—such as listening, coaching, influencing, problem solving and communicating effectively—are proving to be as important, if not more important, than technical competence as managers advance through the ranks. What’s more, “The Hard Science Behind Soft Skills” (Chief Learning Officer magazine) cites research by Development Dimensions International revealing an average return on investment of $4,000 for every $1,100 spent developing soft skills.
What soft skills gaps are you recognizing in yourself and/or your team? How would closing these gaps drive improved business results? What can your company do to better align leadership development objectives with the needs of the business?
Our team partners with companies to identify soft skills gaps and build the capabilities required to achieve the highest levels of individual and team performance. Click to explore our soft skills development programs and how we can help your organization cultivate these critical skills in your leaders over time.
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