Skyrocket Your ROI With Soft Skills Training

“An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.” – Benjamin Franklin

Have you ever considered using soft skills training to boost your company’s ROI?

The strength of your ROI is directly related to how you manage company assets. And your employees are the most critical assets you’ve got. When you train and empower them, employees can take your business profits to new heights.

Soft skills contribute to building a corporate culture that encourages staff to fully engage in team projects.

Employees who possess soft skills will show appreciation for coworkers and solicit collaboration on their projects.

Here are some of the benefits of soft skills training:

  • Employee retention
  • Better teamwork
  • Higher employee engagement
  • Reduced cases of absenteeism
  • Enhanced customer service
  • Improved workplace communication
  • The emergence of new skill sets

Soft skills training prepares employees for leadership roles by honing interpersonal skills, time management, and effective communication. So you know they’ll be qualified for leadership when a promotion arises.

How Do Soft Skills Differ From Hard Skills?

While hard skills are acquired through education and enhanced through practice, soft skills carry a more humane touch. The two skill sets complement each other to expand an employee’s effectiveness, both personally and professionally. Soft skills are attributes that enhance an employee’s interactions and enable them to navigate their social environment.

The Collins Dictionary lists common sense and a flexible attitude as examples of soft skills. Don’t these attributes form a huge part of day-to-day operations?

Yet soft skills are often overlooked.

Your business is only as good as the people working within it. To increase your ROI, you must ensure that your team possesses a wide range of soft skills to complement their hard skills.

Here’s a list of the soft skills that every marketer must have, according to Larry Kim, CEO of Mobile Monkey:

The 4 Essential Soft Skills for Your Employees

As we move toward a digital-human workforce, employees will need to make up for the soft skills that robots (currently) lack.

For instance, a chatbot may respond to customer queries with lightning speed and with minimal mistakes.

However, only a human can demonstrate genuine empathy or conflict resolution skills when dealing with a client.

According to the Future of Jobs Report published by the World Economic Forum, employees will need these 10 skills to thrive in the fourth industrial revolution:

Top 10 skills in the fourth industrial revolution

These are the 4 main soft skills your employees need to acquire right now:

  • Teamwork
  • Leadership
  • Time management
  • Problem-solving

Each of these soft skills can increase your ROI if acquired by your employees. Here’s how:

How Soft Skills Training Maximizes Your ROI

1. Teamwork

If you want your team to innovate, train your employees to be effective team members.

Good teamwork fosters creativity. Ideas cascade more freely when members brainstorm together as opposed to flying solo.

The trick with teamwork is getting everyone in the zone and attaining what researcher R. Keith Sawyer termed group flow.

“Group flow happens when many tensions are in perfect balance: between convention and novelty, between structure and improvisation, between the critical, analytic mind and the freewheeling, outside-the-box mind, between listening to the rest of the group and speaking out with your own individual voice.” – R. Keith Sawyer, What Mel Brooks Can Teach Us about “Group Flow”

Group-inspired innovation is all about “finding just the right amount of structure to support improvisation, but not so much structure that it smothers creativity.”

When you teach people how to work well in teams, “groups find flow—and with it, studies show, comes more effective team performance, greater innovation, and higher workplace satisfaction.”

Team members show greater enthusiasm when they work together towards a common goal.

Plus the sense of belonging and camaraderie lowers employee turnover. Employees tend to stick with companies where they feel connected to their colleagues and the organization.

How to develop teamwork within your team:

  • Give incentives to the entire team instead of an individual
  • Use team-building exercises to foster bonding
  • Have weekly team meetings where employees share work-related challenges and find solutions among themselves
  • Train employees on interpersonal communication

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2. Problem-Solving

Employees with a can-do attitude are a huge asset.

They can prevent the business from grinding to a halt when unexpected problems arise.

Equipping your team with problem-solving skills will prepare them to assess complex business challenges. They will then be able to calmly identify and implement solutions to benefit the team.

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You’ll have a more engaged workforce who proactively identify and improve bottlenecks in the business.

Problem-solving isn’t all about the immediate solution. For instance, an employee with problem-solving skills will recognize the underlying issue in a customer complaint before offering a quick fix.

This requires active listening, research, team spirit, and risk management; all of which your staff can learn from effective soft skills training.

How to develop problem-solving within your team:

  • Encourage employees to examine the steps a coworker took to solve a problem
  • Give employees role-specific refresher courses to build their expertise

3. Time Management

Employees who manage their time effectively are good for business; they have higher productivity and less burnout.

Employees today contend with social media, email, meetings, and other disruptions that encourage reactivity.

To build a proactive team, you need to teach them how to maximize their workday.

Stephen Covey’s time management matrix is a great way to show your team how to prioritize.

Stephen Covey’s 4 quadrants time management matrix

How to develop time management within your team:

4. Leadership

The National Board of Economic Research in the US carried out a study on 1,940 managers and over 23,878 employees over a 5-year period.

The study revealed that great managers boost employee productivity by an average of 11% per employee. They also registered a lower turnover within their teams.

That’s because employees don’t leave bad companies, they leave bad managers.

Leadership skills are not just for employees in leadership roles.

Self-motivation, empathy, effective communication, assertiveness, and taking initiative are important leadership skills that foster teamwork.

Employees with leadership skills can motivate teams toward higher productivity, customer satisfaction, and innovation.

How to develop leadership within your team:

  • Model leadership skills to your employees
  • Have one-on-one meetings with your managers to provide additional coaching
  • Encourage your managers to empower teammates by delegating some of their tasks

How to Execute Soft Skills Training in Your Workplace

Assess Your Team’s Training Needs

Does your staff possess a wide range of hard skills but minimal soft skills?

If you notice these signs, your company has a soft skills gap:

  • High customer acquisition, low customer retention
  • Managers are in plenty, real leaders are scarce
  • High staff turnover
  • Multiple customer complaints about frontline employees

Before implementing soft skills training, assess the needs within your company; let your business objectives guide you.

For instance, if you want to increase your customer retention rate for the next year, your soft skills training should include active listening and conflict resolution.

Don’t forget your company culture. Consider training your employees on soft skills that enhance your company vision, mission, and culture.

Find the Perfect LMS to Teach Soft Skills

A learning management system (LMS) enables employees to take in small chunks of information in a short time.

This technique is referred to as microlearning. It uses small pieces of digital content such as video clips, FAQs, and checklists to deliver courses.

World Manager is an award-winning online training platform and LMS that can help you seamlessly implement your soft skills training.

With its user-friendly authoring tools, you can create and deliver content through interactive presentations.

You can track employees’ progress through checklist sign-offs and real-time reports. You’ll be notified by the Achievement Awards tool when an employee accomplishes a training milestone.

Since World Manager is mobile-first, employees can access their soft skills training anywhere and anytime.

Even key personnel can participate without interrupting your business operations.

Hire the Right People

Start by hiring candidates who possess soft skills. Employ analytics, testing, and thorough screening during the hiring process to determine a candidate’s attributes.

If you fail to develop an employee’s soft skills, you’ll have no choice but to accommodate them.

“You can’t change the way someone is at their core but you can teach them to manage their approach.” – Dwight Crain, Profiles International.

Candidates don’t have to tick all the boxes; they just need to have development potential.

Look for employees you can train up.

As you execute soft skills training, don’t abandon hard skills entirely. Apply them both in your training for a well-rounded workforce.

Get Started

Are you ready to bridge the soft skills gap in your company?

Find out how easy it really is to create interactive training tests without previous experience using World Manager’s training templates. Request a demo today.

Disclaimer: This information is meant to provide general guidelines and should be used as a reference. It may not take into account all relevant local, state or federal laws and is not a legal document. Neither the author nor World Manager will assume any legal liability that may arise from the use of this information.

The best companies use World Manager to train staff, maintain standards, and set the company up on the road to success.