List of Skills and Abilities Important For Success


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There are three main categories of skills. They are life skills, soft skills, and hard skills. All of these skills contribute to our overall success in the workplace. 

Life skills are abilities we need for us to survive each day such as cooking and washing. 


Soft skills refer to the different ways we interact with others at work. 


Hard skills are the certified abilities we have such as Accounting, Teaching and Nursing.



What Is A Skill And Why We Need Them


A skill is the capacity to do a particular task well repeatedly. Therefore skills are gained by putting into practice what one has learnt. 


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Reading alone is not enough, we need to do practical tasks to reinforce what we learn.



The Greatest Fundamental Skill: Life Skills


Life skills are the most important skills you need. Such as the ability to cook, wash, iron, clean, groom yourself, and work, to ensure your daily survival.


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The less fundamental life skills we have, the harder it will be for us in life.


How To Develop And Maintain Important Core Soft Skills 


Soft Skills refers to our abilities to interact with others and starts first within our home as children. At home, we first learnt how to talk with our parents, and siblings in various ways.


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This interaction continues throughout our lifetime with additional persons. Such as extended family members, neighbours, and friends. Therefore we end up having conversational skills without realising them as such.


Soft skills include our ability to speak properly and listen carefully to others. Our facial expressions while interacting with others, also reflects our thoughts and emotions.


When being interviewed for a job, applicants soft skills such as greeting interviewers, and answering questions clearly and accurately, is assessed.



How To Effectively Use Soft Skills At Work


Soft skills are extremely crucial to the workplace. If an employee works well and lacks social abilities, they may not be able to advance in their career.


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Employees need to know how to interact with co-workers, customers, and senior workers, in a friendly respectable way.


Being considerate of others, being courteous, is just as important as having the ability to do a job task well. 



Fundamental Hard Skills


Hard Skills refers to abilities that you have learnt in a formal setting such as preschools, high schools, universities, and certificate course. If staff members working do not have the necessary hard skills required, the business will eventually collapse.


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The most important hard skills that are learnt early on includes the ability to read, write, do simple basic mathematics.


When older, other important subject areas are taught including Information Technology, Accounting, Business, History, Foreign Languages, Biology, Social Studies, Geography, and Art.



Hard Skills For Specific Careers


It is important to have hard skills, designed for a particular job that you want to pursue. Additionally, if you already have a career and want to advance much further, learning additional hard skills are important.


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Choosing where you learn specific skills is crucial. Ensure classes that you attend have the proper certifications. If not this will cause serious problems for you in the future.



General Job Skills For The Office


Life Skills


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  • Grooming ourselves and dressing according to specific guidelines for work.


  • Being able to take care of ourselves at work when necessary. 



Soft Skills


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  • Greeting co-workers pleasantly when we arrive at work.


  • Asking questions when necessary.


  • Speaking to customers and staff respectfully.


  • Listening to instructions and following them.


  • The ability to handle constructive criticism.


  • Interacting with staff and clients at social gatherings.


  • Speaking to co-workers pleasantly.


Hard Skills


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  • Keeping office records organised.


  • Writing memos, letters, reports.


  • Learning how to use office technology well such as computers, printers, fax machines, phone systems.


  • Having the ability to use computer software. 


  • Sending and responding to emails.


  • Managing financial transactions.


  • Participating in projects.


  • Managing travel arrangements.



10 Ways To Improve Your Life, Soft and Hard Skills 


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  • Go to classes at an institution that is accredited. It is important that the classes you attend have enough practical lessons to reinforce what you have learnt


  • You can watch free videos online teaching you ways to improve specific skills or abilities that you have


  • Buy books that focus on teaching specific skills. It is best to buy books that also illustrate by images how to use your abilities


  • Purchase magazines that focus on a particular skill


  • Read newspapers to keep updated about topics related to your skills 


  • Subscribe to online newsletters or email subscriptions, from experts in your field


  • Join online community discussion forums that focus on improving specific skills 


  • Use the skills you have to create items and then sell them. It is important to learn how to make money from abilities you have


  • Enter competitions to master your skills. You will learn the importance of time management and what specific areas of your profession that needs the most attention


  • Join clubs or associations, that focus on the abilities you need to and want to improve


According to Georgetown University, the following are top skills that employers need.



Top 15 Job Skills In Demand


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  • Communication Skills – Kent University lists the following communication skills. These are Telephone Skills, Presentation, Giving and Receiving Criticism, Motivating and Support, Spoken Communication, Persuading and Negotiating, Gathering Information, Listening, and Body Language.


  • Organisational Skills – TheBalance lists the following organisational skills. These are Physical Organization, Physical Organisation, Planning, Teamwork


  • Writing – Kenyon College lists the following basic writing skills. These are Content, Organisation, Research, Style, Research


  • Customer Service – TheBalance lists the top 10 customer service skills. These are Communication, Listening, Self Control, Positivity, Assertiveness, Conflict Revolution, Empathy, Depersonalization, Taking Responsibility, Humour


  • Microsoft Excel – Loyola Marymount University lists the following Microsoft Excel Skills. These are Creating a List, Formatting Cells, Formatting a Worksheet for Printing, Managing Worksheets, Presenting Data, Visually Inserting Illustrations, Adding Basic Formula’s and Functions, Adding Advanced Functions, Sharing a Workbook, Sorting and Filtering Data


  • Problem Solving – Kent University lists the following ways to resolve a problem. These are (1) Evaluating the Problem (2) Managing the Problem (3) Decision Making (4) Resolving the Problem. 


  • Planning – Counselling Center Village list the following planning skills. These are Brainstorming, Generalising, Strategizing, Applying, Making Specific Plans


  • Microsoft Office – The following list is from Microsoft Office, showing Microsoft Office Applications. These are Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Powerpoint, Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft OneNote, Microsoft Access, Microsoft Project, Microsoft Publisher, Microsoft Visio, Microsoft Sway, Microsoft Teams.


  • Research – According to the Middlesex Community College English Department, the following skills are essential to research. These are Accessing Information, Evaluating Information, Managing Information, Using Information, Documentation.


  • Detail – Oriented – The BusinessZone UK lists the following skills necessary for a detail oriented work. These are Organisational Skills, Time Management Skills, Analytical Thinking, Active Listening Skills, Observation Skills


  • Building Effective Relationships – North Central Weed Science Society states the three components of a healthy work relationship. These are Conditions, Connection, Communication


  • Project Management – American Intercontinental University lists the following Project Management skills as being critical. These are Scheduling, Contract Management, Collaboration, Business Process, Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC), Scrum, Procurement, Microsoft Sharepoint, Mentoring, Process Improvement.


  • Computer Skills – The following are computer skills Kent University has listed. These are Basic Concepts of Information Technology, Using the Computer and Managing Files (Windows and File Management), Word Processing (Microsoft Word), Spreadsheets (Microsoft Excel), Database, Presentation (Microsoft Access), Information and Communication (Microsoft PowerPoint)


  • Quality Assurance and Control – The following skills are required to be a Quality Inspector according to National Career Services UK. These are Negotiating skills, planning and project management skills, Information Technology, Mathematics, Relevant Technical Skills (engineering or manufacturing).


  • Troubleshooting – TheBalance shows the following skills necessary for troubleshooting effectively. These are Analysing the factors or causes contributing to the unwanted situation, Generating a set of alternative interventions to achieve your end goal, Evaluating the best solutions, Implementing a plan, Assessing the effectiveness of your interventions



What skills do you think are essential to your future career plans? Leave comments below in the area provided.



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