Jul 25, 2017

Why do people need soft skills in an era of high technology?

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Soft-skills and hard-skills (HRUnitI-1 of 2)


Describe soft-skills and hard-skills. Give an example of each. Why do people need soft skills in an era of high technology? APA Guidelines are to be used for your in-text citations and sources.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this unit, students should be able to:

1.    Explain how interpersonal skills are learned.

2.    Explain the model for interpersonal skills improvement.

3.    Pinpoint your needs for improvement in interpersonal relations.

4.    Describe potential opportunities for developing interpersonal skills on the job.

5.    Examine adjustments for the individual differences among people in dealing with them on the job.

6.    Develop insight into how your personality, mental ability, emotional intelligence, and values differ from others.

7.    Evaluate personality differences among people.

8.    Distinguish between the mental ability differences among people, and differences in values among people.

Written Lecture

Unit I begins with setting the stage for improving interpersonal relations in organizations by presenting a framework for interpersonal skill development and training. Effective interpersonal relations must be combined with technical knowledge and good work habits to achieve success in any job involving interaction with people. Many people are held back from promotions and pay raises, and even lose their jobs, because of poor relationships with people.

A five-part model is presented for acquiring and improving interpersonal skills to include, goal or desired state of affairs, assessing reality, an action plan, feedback on actions, and frequent practice. The unit continues with an explanation that certain workplace experiences are particularly suited to interpersonal skill development. These experiences are (1) unfamiliar responsibilities, (2) proving yourself, (3) problems with employees, (4) influencing others without authority, and (5) having a difficult manager.

People are the most likely to develop new skills when they feel the need for change. A specific area in which a person needs to change is referred to as a developmental need. Self-analysis, thinking through past feedback, and soliciting new feedback are helpful in identifying developmental needs. Feedback from performance evaluations is useful also. This unit addresses universal needs for improving interpersonal relations. Some areas for skill improvement in interpersonal relations are found among managerial, professional, technical, and sales personnel. A universal training need is an area for improvement common to most people.

Developing interpersonal skills on the job is discussed in this unit. Opportunities exist in the workplace for developing interpersonal skills that can be a valuable supplement to more formal training. Informal learning and specific developmental experiences are explained.


The unit explains a key contributor to developing effective interpersonal relationships in organizations understands individual differences, the variations in how people respond to the same situation based on personal characteristics. Individual differences in personality greatly influence interpersonal relationships. Personality refers to those persistent and enduring behavior patterns that tend to be expressed in a wide variety of situations.

Eight personality factors, traits and job performance are discussed. Depending on the job, any one of the preceding personality factors can be important for success. Conscientiousness relates to job performance for many different occupations, yet conscientiousness can interfere with spontaneity and imagination. Extraversion is associated with success for managers and salespersons. High self-monitors tend to receive higher performance evaluations, and they tend to engage in organizational citizenship behavior, a willingness to go beyond one`s job description. A study with customer service employees demonstrated that having low standing on the Big Five personality factions is associated with counterproductive work behavior such as taking company property.

A combination of personality factors will sometimes be more closely associated with job success than one factor alone, such as being conscientious and agreeable. Optimism and pessimism can enhance job performance depending on the job.

Personality also influences a person`s cognitive style, or modes of problem solving.

Jung`s analysis of cognitive style became the basis for the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MB Tl). Four separate dichotomies direct the typical use of perception and judgment by an individual: (1) extraversion-introversion, (2) sensing-intuition, (3) thinking-feeling, and (4) judging-perceiving.

The unit explains mental ability is one of the major sources of individual differences that affect job performance and behavior. Intelligence is the capacity to acquire and apply knowledge. Abstract problems can best be solved by intelligent workers. Understanding the intelligence of others can improve one`s ability to relate to them. The components of traditional intelligence are covered in this unit.

Multiple intelligences and emotional intelligence are explained. To overcome the limited idea that intelligence mostly involves the ability to solve abstract problems, the concept of the triarchic theory of intelligence has been proposed. The analytical subtype is the traditional intelligence needed for solving difficult problems. The creative subtype is the type of intelligence required for imagination and combining things in novel ways. The practical subtype is the type of intelligence required for adapting to your environment to suit your needs. Included in practical intelligence is intuition, and experience-based way of knowing or reasoning in which the weighing and balancing of evidence are done automatically. Experience usually improves practical intelligence. According to the theory of multiple intelligences, people know and understand the world in distinctly different ways, and learn in different ways. The eight intelligences, or faculties, are as follows: (1) linguistic, (2) logical-mathematical, (3) musical, (4) spatial, (5) bodily/kinesthetic, (6) intrapersonal, (7) interpersonal, and (8) naturalist. How effectively people use their emotions has a major impact on their success. Emotional intelligence refers to qualities such as understanding one`s feelings, empathy for others, and the regulation of emotion to enhance living.

The four key factors of emotional intelligence are identified in this unit. Several suggestions are given for relating differently to people of different types and levels of intelligence. For example, when people are brighter, present ideas in more technical depth, use more difficult words, and ask challenging questions; do the opposite with a mentally slow question.

The unit concludes with a discussion of values as a source of individual differences. A value refers to the importance a personal attaches to something, and values are another source of individual differences. Values are closely tied in with ethics, the moral choices a person makes. Differences in values among people often stem from age, or generational differences. Table 2-1 presents stereotypes about Baby Boomers versus members of Generation X and Generation Y.

Values are an important driver of interpersonal effectiveness. One approach would be to establish the values a person will use in relationships with others on the job, and then use those values as a firm guideline in working with others. Also, express your concern to employers when you believe that your values are being compromised.

Learning Activities (Non-Graded)

For a review of the Key Terms of the unit, click here to access the interactive Unit I Flashcards in PowerPoint form. (Click here to access a PDF version.)

To further develop your understanding of the concepts presented in Unit I, it is suggested that you complete the Case Studies for Chapters 1 and 2, located on pages 17-18 and 42-43 of your textbook.

To further explore the interpersonal skills discussed in Unit I, it is suggested that you practice the Self-Assessment Quizzes on pages 10, 24-25, and 37 of your textbook.

These are non-graded activities, so you do not need to submit them.
and Development

Soft-skills and hard-skillsNameProfessorDateSoft-skills and hard-skillsSoft skills are attributes, unique to an individual that enhance a person`s interactions, career prospects, and job performance. Soft skills are interpersonal in nature and applicable in many aspects of life. Soft skills are the traits that characterize one`s relationship with other people. “EQ” or Emotional Intelligence Quotient is a term sometimes used by sociologists to refer to soft skills. Soft skills are difficult to acquire as they are not learned skills. They define who a person is and not necessarily what that person knows CITATION Dip09 l 1033 (Biswas...

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