Flexible skills – the ability to communicate, think outside the box, make decisions, and work in a team – are needed today in any industry to be in demand in the labor market as a professional. We tell you what competencies are included in the list of flexible skills and where you can acquire them.
What skills are there?
Hard skills are professional or technical skills. We learn them through training and hone them by applying them on the job.
Hard skills are quite measurable: you can identify and indicate your level of English, your degree of proficiency in a particular program, your driving experience. Such skills tend to show your knowledge and skills to a certain extent, and of course allow you to monetize them. So, for example, a tutor earns from working for write essay for me service or helping students online.
Soft skills or flexible skills are universal skills not related to a certain profession or specialty. They reflect the personal qualities of a person: his ability to communicate with people, effectively organize his time, think creatively, make decisions, and take responsibility.
Who needs flexible skills
In today’s world, flexible skills are essential to professional and personal success. They are considered critical in employment and provide fast career building and high earnings.
Top 10 Agile Skills
In 2016, the World Economic Forum in Davos formulated ten flexible skills of the future that professionals in any profession will need:
- Complex problem-solving skills.
- Critical thinking.
- Creative thinking.
- The ability to manage people.
- Ability to work in a team.
- Ability to recognize and manage own and others’ emotions.
- Ability to form a judgment and make decisions.
- Client orientation.
- Switching from one task to another.
The “4С” model
The ten flexible skills of the future have been transformed into a simpler and clearer “4С” model. These are four key competencies whose names begin with the letter K. Every schoolchild needs to develop them to be in demand in the labor market in the future.
These competencies are:
- Critical thinking – the ability to critically evaluate information coming from the outside, analyze it and check its validity, see cause-and-effect connections, discard the unnecessary and highlight the main thing, and draw conclusions;
- Creativity – the ability to think out of the box, to find unexpected solutions to problems, to react flexibly to changes
- Communicative skills – ability to communicate, convey your message, listen to the interlocutor, negotiate;
- Coordination – the ability to work in a team, to take on both leadership and executive functions, to distribute roles, and to supervise the execution of tasks.
What Flexibility Skills Offer
Agile skills are not only necessary for building a career. They help you learn successfully and interact with people close to you – parents, relatives, and friends. The ability to communicate and articulate your thoughts helps, for example, to quickly capture the attention of the audience during a report or course defense, and to make a good impression at an oral exam. The ability to manage your emotions saves you from bad moods that prevent you from being productive. The ability to manage time and prioritize helps you save energy when preparing for exams, and planning skills help you achieve your goals faster.
How to develop flexible skills
Sports, board, intellectual games
- Quests. Teaches out-of-the-box thinking, quickly identifying a problem and finding a solution, distributing roles in a team, listening to the opinion of others, and arguing your point of view.
- Sports Orienteering. Practices the ability to think quickly, make decisions, lead and obey, help other team members, and sense and time correctly.
- Board games. Not all board games are suitable for the development of flexible skills, but only those that require constant interaction with other players, the ability to recognize emotions, quickly make decisions, negotiate, and predict the actions of the players: “Munchkin”, “Mafia”, “Monopoly”.
- Sports games. relay races, and team games (soccer, volleyball, basketball) train leadership, discipline, and the ability to perceive criticism and accept defeat with dignity.
Project work at school
School projects develop the ability to distribute roles, lead and obey, discuss topics, argue, analyze information and draw conclusions, and develop planning skills and public speaking skills.
Extracurricular activities at school
To develop flexible skills it is useful to take part in the preparation of holidays, performances, contests, and quizzes. A drama club or any other club will teach how to find common ground with different people and how to be confident on stage. The school newspaper will teach us to understand people and their needs, to work with information, and to offer different solutions to problems. The more varied the extracurricular activities, the more flexible skills you can learn.
Educational camp is one of the new modern forms of learning that allows you to practice both rigorous and flexible skills at the same time. In any educational camp there are necessarily two areas:
- Skills training in the professional field the camp is dedicated to physics, math, programming, graphic design, and journalism. It takes the form of lessons, lectures, seminars, and workshops where teachers share their professional secrets.
- Training in communication and teamwork skills. To this end, special training sessions, quizzes, table-game tournaments, and sports competitions are organized at the educational camp.
Courses and Training
Many flexible skills can be learned at special training courses or courses held in person or online. Online courses are suitable for learning time management and creativity, but communication and team skills are better taught in person. There are special courses for teenagers that develop communication and teamwork skills. Vocational orientation and self-determination training are also useful for the development of flexible skills – they will help to determine the strong and weak qualities and understand which flexible skills have already been mastered at a sufficient level, and which need to be developed.