The big companies in Kenya put their eyes on professionals who have been able to develop their soft skills in parallel with their studies. But what are they really and what can you do to put them into practice?
There is a lot of talk about the importance of continuing with higher education, even if you already have a degree.
The offer of master’s programs, MBA’s, doctorates and supplementary courses is everywhere, and often a minor detail is left out in terms of the current labour market.
The big companies have stopped giving a lot of importance to the number of diplomas that a candidate has to move to focus on the development of their soft or transversal skills.
But what is this all about?
Unlike the hard skills, which are identified with all the curricular academic knowledge obtained during the formal training process, the soft skills have to do with the integrated implementation of skills, personality traits, knowledge and values acquired.
Among the most sought after are communicative and relationship skills, creativity, the ability to work as a team, responsibility, honesty, commitment and proactive attitudes when solving problems and generating innovative ideas that help boost growth of the organization.
What measures do universities take?
The academic field has been increasingly aware of the importance of training students to develop transversal skills and not only to become empirical knowledge.
For instance, a Commercial Engineering course should combine courses such as finance, economics and marketing, with a series of courses such as critical reading, argumentation , leadership and expression. All this in order to encourage critical thinking and train professionals in all plans.
Students should also seek participate in holiday activities such as sports, cultural events, in order to generate in them feel a sense of community, belonging, teamwork and solidarity.