Wednesday, September 13, 2017

How You Can Use Your Soft Skills to Grow Your Career

IT professionals need more than technical ability to advance their careers. Sure, you might be happy hiding in the server room, but if you want your career to evolve, soft skills will help. Here are some ways soft skills can help you expand your potential:
Writing skills can be used in many ways. You can write content for IT books, Web sites, magazines and more. And when you want to move into higher positions, like management or even CIO, your writing abilities will help the leadership of the organization understand its own IT needs.
Verbal skills come in handy when you move into a position that requires you to present your thoughts before a group of people. Management positions often require presentation abilities. And if you ever decide to take advantage of the big money a sales position can provide, your verbal skills will serve you well. In addition, your verbal skills will help you deal with customers and colleagues, in any job role.
Don’t underestimate the value of sales skills. You may never want to move into a sales position, but those skills can come in handy in other ways. When you’re interviewing for a new job, those sales skills might help you convince the hiring manager you’re the one for the job. And in management positions, you will often need to “sell” your proposals to others.
Being a good team player will not only help you in your current position, but will also help you move up. If you are interested in managing others, you will need to demonstrate your ability to cooperate with groups of people early on. If you can also lead your team to success, that’s even better.
You don’t always need to understand the subtle workings of the business when you’re low on the IT ladder, but as you move up, you’ll find you need more and more business knowledge.
Being able to motivate others may not be that important where you are now, but it becomes helpful when the CEO is relying on you to ensure the success of the organization’s IT initiatives. Start by learning to motivate yourself, then use those techniques to get everyone around you motivated. Increasing your department’s productivity can set you up for a promotion.
By Emily Hollis
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