Can you recognize “Soft Skills”?
My client orientation is probably more thorough than most. I want to learn as much about the practice dynamics as possible. I ask about the practice culture, the history of the practice, where this new client sees him/herself in the coming years.
Do they have a mission statement? How much experience do they feel the candidates I present require to effectively fill the position they are offering? And when it comes to the “skills” required I will often pause and ask them “What about “soft skills”?” It’s surprising to me how many either don’t know about soft skills or don’t appreciate their importance.
So, before we discuss the skill sets that will either make or break the candidates offered, I first discuss how critically important that I feel soft skills are to the hiring process. I believe that soft skills should supersede skill sets first and foremost. Behavior is something that is ingrained within our psyche. These are the characteristics that cannot be taught. If soft skills are strong and in place, then “skill sets” will follow organically.
What are Soft Skills?
- The ability to successfully oversee Conflict, Stress and Time Management.
- Fine-tuned Communication Skills
- Healthy Emotional Balance
For those professionals that have been able to address their soft skills and further build and cultivate them successfully is “the gift that keeps on giving”. These are the people that could pick up and learn what is expected of them and naturally grow and enhance the new skills that they master. These are the people that don’t necessarily multitask but prioritize, which is a valuable and manageable skill. These are the people that give more effort to maintaining an even keel rather than making waves. These are the people that take their job seriously, are loyal and respect others’ feelings.
So, I recommend that we make the evaluation of skill sets a segment of the interview process. I’d be lost without my SELF Profile when it comes to vetting team members. Although I understand that this is a small snapshot of our behavior, it can still deliver additional information that can prove very beneficial when it comes to making your final hiring choice.
For those of you that administer and are trained in facilitating DiSC, I strongly suggest you incorporate this in your hiring protocols. This assessment evaluates behavior and not “personality” as many think it does. It will require some training to be savvy in the interpretation of this assessment, for it isn’t always cut and dry. Consider incorporating the gathering of soft skills during your interview process. It really will deliver additional information that will prove invaluable.
For those of you that are interested in my own dental-specific SELF Profile Assessment, I’d be happy to discuss the possibility of administering it to candidates that you might be considering (or even for existing team members). This is accomplished remotely and is coordinated with a ½ hour phone call with the candidates in question to be sure that the results generated by the profile align with how they present.