In this article
What is the professional skill?
Professional skills are those career skills that are not often taught (or you acquired) as part of coursework requirements when obtaining your Masters or professional degree. This type of skills are leadership, mentoring, project management and conflict resolution are valuable skills, which are common requirements for any career. Professional skill consists of two types of skills, which are hard skill and soft skill.
Soft skills – Soft skills on the other hand are usually self-taught and self-developed, are becoming increasingly valuable to all employers, regardless of the type of industry they operate in. Unlike hard skills, these are not specific to any industry or work. Soft skills can come naturally or be strengthened over time. Examples of soft skills are adaptability, creativity, leadership, and the ability to work under pressure.
Hard skills – Hard skills are those skills that you need to perform a particular job efficiently. These skills often vary depending on the type of role you will be performing or you will be working in the industry. These can usually be developed through study and training. Examples of hard skills include a diploma in accounting, multilingual or bilingual, computer skills or experience in a specific industry.
For instance, if you apply for a Chinese-English translation job, you must be fluent in both languages – otherwise, you simply are not eligible for the position.
Difference between hard and soft skills –
|Soft skills||Hard skills|
Useful across all industries
Learned through training
Related to emotional intelligence
Based on technical knowledge
Top 21 Professional Skills to Learn in 2021
Nowadays, the job market is extremely competing. You may require more than a few professional skills to land your dream job. The following 21 are the trending skills of 2021, you may need to learn and most of the skills below are important and required for any job.
1. Communication skills
Communication skills are the most common and frequently used professional skills in our life. You use communication skills to give and receive different kinds of information, and it helps you to understand and be understood by others while communicating. These skills may include sharing ideas with others, actively listening to conversations, responding, and public speaking, but keep in mind that communication skill is not limited to the aforementioned.
Types of communication
The four main types of communication medium are:
How to improve your communication skills
You can learn and improve your communication skills, with experience and practice. Identify your strengths and weaknesses. Then practice and develop in those areas where you are not good. You can –
2. Teamwork skills
Teamwork skills are the qualities and abilities that allow you to work with a group of people during conversations, projects, meetings or other collaborations to achieve a common goal. Your teamwork skills are dependent on your ability to communicate well, actively listen and be responsible and honest.
In a job, you will be required to work alongside others in every industry at every level in your career. It can help you build relationships with others. Building rapport in office often leads to deeper work relationships, new connections and possibly new opportunities for your career.
How to improve your teamwork skills
Teamwork can take time and work to improve, but building these qualities is certainly possible.
Here are some steps you can take to improve your teamwork skills:
3. Time management
Time management is the process of organising, planning, and dividing your time between specific activities. Good time management skills enable you to work smarter, not harder. If you work smartly, you will get more done in less time, even when time is tight and pressures are high. Failing to manage your time while performing a task will damage your effectiveness and cause stress.
Some of the most important time management skills include:
Time management skills are extremely important in any job. Because, they help you structure your work in a way that allows you to achieve goals. If you have a specific time set aside to complete your tasks, you can also have extra time to think about the big picture for yourself and your company.
4. Problem-solving skills
Problem-solving skills help you determine the source of the problem and find effective solutions and will advance your professional skills. Companies rely on people who can assess both types of situations and quietly identify solutions. Problem-solving skills are valued by employers in any job and are extremely useful in other areas of life such as relationship building and day-to-day decision-making.
Some key problem-solving skills include:
Creative thinking means your ability to use the imagination to generate new ideas or ability to think about a task or a problem in a new or different way. Creative thinkers look at things from a unique perspective which is invisible to others. They can find patterns and make connections to find opportunities in complex systems. If you are a creative thinker, it will assist you to solve complex problems or find interesting ways to approach tasks.
There are a variety of creative skills that you can practice to make yourself more creative in the workplace.
Creativity skills include:
If these aforementioned skills are used together, they can be effective in helping you think differently about a problem or a task. Take a creativity skill course with Training Express to learn more about it and be successful in your career.
6. Work Ethic
Work is a valuable quality that employers look for in that industry. Showing the qualities related to a good work ethic can boost your employment and help you position yourself for better job opportunities. The employer often gives opportunities only to the employees with excellent work ethics to work on special projects because of their reliability, dedication and disciplinary characteristics.
An employee with a strong work ethic exhibits a particular set of values and behaviours. These values and behaviours make him/her stand out as highly coveted team members and praise-worthy employees.
These characteristics are-
7. Interpersonal skills
Interpersonal skills are the traits you rely on when you are interacting and communicating with others. These skills often indicate your ability to communicate and build relationships with others. Interpersonal skills are often called people skills. Because they combine both your innate personality characteristics and how you’ve learned to handle certain social situations. If you use interpersonal skills effectively, these skills can help you during the job interview process and can also have a positive impact on your career advancement.
Here are few examples of interpersonal skills include:
In every work environment, strong interpersonal skills are a resource that can help you navigate complexities, changes and everyday tasks.
Jobs that require interpersonal skills –
8. Leadership skills
Leadership skills are those skills you often use when organizing other people to reach a shared goal or complete a task. It doesn’t matter if you are in a management position or leading a project, leadership skills require you to motivate others to complete a series of tasks before the deadline. Leadership is a combination of several skills working together.
Some examples of leadership skills that make you a strong leader are-
9. Stress Management
We have experienced work-related stress at some point in our careers. There could be stressful elements in any job, even if you love what you do. You may experience pressure to meet a deadline or to fulfil a challenging task. But when work stress becomes chronic, and it can be overwhelming and harmful, both to your physical and emotional health.
Some common workplace stressors are:
The stress associated with work does not simply disappear when you head home for the day. A stressful work environment can cause many problems. For instance, headache, stomach ache, sleep disturbances, short temper, and difficulty concentrating.
10. Organisational skills
Organisational skills are the abilities that allow you to use your resources efficiently and effectively on different tasks. Being organised means that you can manage your own time, energy and workspace well and also be able to accomplish all your assigned tasks successfully. Organisational skills can take different forms depending on specific workplace and job title. However, organisational skills typically involve maintaining an orderly workspace, meeting deadlines and communicating well with your team.
Being organised in the workplace involves using a variety of important skills, including:
How to improve your organizational skills –
11. Analytical skills
Analytical skills are the abilities which allow you to collect, organize, visualize, and assemble information and to thoroughly analyse that information. Analytical skill allows you to see the patterns, draw conclusions, and find solutions. As a result, it can boost your employee productivity and company’s performance.
The five types of skills that are crucial to success in many jobs and industries are:
How to improve your analytical thinking skills –
12. Information technology Skills
IT skills are also known as information technology skills. IT skills are technical skills necessary to work within technical support, maintenance, and development IT is a comprehensive skill set that ranges from hardware installation and software development to problem-solving and data analysis.
We live in the modern world, where we can’t live a day without the help of modern technology. Technology related skills are always in demand among employers. More and more companies are going online from offline based and making their operation cloud-based. That is why tech skills are more in demand nowadays more than ever.
Some of the most demandable skills to learn in the Information Technology field are –
How to improve IT skills –
No one is born with IT skills in their head – they need to learn and like everything else, you can learn them in different ways.
13. Basic computer skills
Nowadays, being familiar with everyday technology is no longer enough. In today’s technology-centric world, it’s vital for everyone to have basic computing skills. It helps people to perform well in the workplace and keep up with the fast-paced changes facing modern businesses.
Basic computer skills mean your ability to perform basic tasks on a computer. This may include understanding specific software, applications, programs, tools, and more. There are two types of computer skills which are software skills and hardware skills. Hardware refers to the computer’s operation, on the other hand software refers to the programs and applications.
The computer skills you need to know depends on your industry. Most jobs require fundamental computer skills to perform well in your industry. Well, basic computer skills include:
14. Customer service skills
Customer service skills refers to these sets of behaviours you rely on when interacting with a customer (online or in person). These skills can also be useful when following up after an initial conversation. For instance, if you work as a virtual assistant for a tech company, you may need to help customers troubleshoot problems with their devices. To help customers, you need to use several skills:
15. Presentation skills
If you want to deliver effective and engaging presentations to a variety of audiences, you need to have a good presentation skill.
This skill gives an individual to –
These skills help you find the best way you want to put forward your messages and enhance your persuasive powers. The current era emphasises good presentation skills. This is because presentation skills play an important role in understanding clients and customers.
How to Improve Presentation Skills –
Developing good presentation skills requires a lot of effort and hard work. To improve your presentation skills, you need to:
16. Marketing skills
Marketing skills are qualities and skills that apply directly to marketing. According to The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), ‘Marketing is the management process for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably’. These skills are the tools that enable a professional to excel in the field of marketing.
When an organization is committed to finding an applicant, who is able to handle job responsibilities and can meet or exceed expectations. The best way to show a potential employer that you are the right candidate for the job is to highlight the right skills on your resume.
A marketing professional needs a combination of both hard and soft skills to be successful in succeeding and thriving in their field.
The following skills are the most important skills for marketing that you should try to incorporate into your resume –
17. Team management
Team management is your ability to lead a group of people or workers in achieving a task or common goal. Effective team management means you are able to give support, communicate with and uplift team members, so they would perform to the best of their abilities and continue to grow as professionals.
The formation of effective team management can certainly vary depending on the work environment and people. Some managers prefer to work and do well with an authoritative approach, while other managers like to manage their teams in their own way. Sometimes the productivity of team members may also respond differently to certain management styles. The important part of team management is to understand your own leadership style and what works best with your team.
The best way to develop your team management skills is to know your ability, set goals, take feedback from the team, practice and continue learning.
18. Project management
Managing a project requires a variety of skills, such as initiation, planning, collecting and executing a task or project, ensures that everything is on track and everyone involved is working to their full potential. The project manager is the person to work with the client or company to review and fix issues, if there are any issues, delays, or problems in the project. They do not directly work on the projects, instead they make sure progress is being made and keep everyone on task.
Project managers play a crucial role, when a company launches new products, the construction of new sites, and the development of new programs.
Skills required for managing a project are the following-
19. Foreign Language skill
The world becomes increasingly interconnected and interdependent with the emergence of globalization. Proficiency in other languages is an essential skill which allows you to engage with the world in a more immediate and meaningful way. However, communication becomes a barrier in international business dealing because not everyone speaks English.
A translator helps to remove that communication barrier and make business transactions smooth between two international companies. With the expansion of international business, the demand for translators has also increased. The following are some areas that you can work in as a translator.
Mastering a foreign language can open many doors for your career. The most useful and profitable languages to learn are – Chinese, Italian, French, German, Spanish. You can learn as many languages as you want. The more you learn, the more capable you will become. As a result, the chances of getting the job you want are increased.
20. Design Skill
Design industry is always evolving. As a designer, you can bring out your creative side with interesting visuals and graphics. There is no limit to what a designer can illustrate with their unique skill. If you want to be self-employed and work as a freelancer, you should learn how to design, and it is an excellent skill to have.
Here are the few design skills good to have –
21. Data Analysis Skills
Data analysis is the process of retrieving, organising and analysing information to help a company to improve production, efficiency or another valuable aspect of the business’s operations. Data analysts generally work in all industries, from retail to academia. They have to collect their own data. From the collected data they create reports that summarise patterns and offer solutions to their customers in the form of updated systems, procedures or protocols.
Work details of data analyst:
– Gathering data
– Finding patterns
– Writing reports
– Collaborating with stakeholders
– Presenting their findings
– Creating systems
We are not certain about the job market after the COVID-19 pandemic. What will our life be like and do we get our dream job? You can diversify your income source, with the help of our list ‘Top 21 Professional Skills’. You can also start or change up your career by mastering these skills. So, don’t waste your time and acquire professional skills to land your dream job.