Soft talents are often regarded as being insignificant. It was more important for professionals to master the hard skills – the technical skills required to get their job done. How they interacted with their peers, communicated along the hierarchy or collaborated to get the job done wasn’t considered essential at all. Most employers hired for academic qualifications, and expertise without paying any attention to the soft skills. Even for entrepreneurs, soft skills can be difficult to evaluate in terms of their impact and level, which, unfortunately, camouflages their genuine significance. Today, soft skills are even more crucial than hard skills (technical abilities) especially for business owners and start ups.
In fact HR professionals, business owners and researchers world over, have found that soft skills, such as emotional intelligence and communication, are just as crucial as technical abilities, if not more so. We’ve all intuitively known that soft skills are a valuable tool that can assist professionals and company owners, now, through many scientific studies, there’s statistical evidence and proof of the same.
Importance of communication skills for founders and CEO
Founders of startups must frequently have discussions with their fellow founders, investors, staff members, or clients. Sometimes, these are difficult or uncomfortable discussions. It will take a variety of talents to manage these interactions. The ability to communicate is perhaps the most crucial of these talents. In the long run, as a founder, spending time honing your communication, coaching, and conflict resolution abilities will be critical to your success.
As an entrepreneur, here are 4 reasons why you must master your communication skills
To hire the best talent even though you may not be pay as much as the big multinationals
To convince employees to stay and be a part of your success story and make it their success story
To negotiate better deals for your company – sales, and other support services
To market your product or service to your employees and potential buyers
7 Soft skills For Entrepreneurs To Master On
All business owners need to be effective leaders. It is not sufficient to have the best idea or the most effective business plan – these are hard talents. To reach a predetermined objective, an entrepreneur needs the ability to sway other people’s judgments. This is where hard skills and soft skills differ. To be successful in business, you should be able to combine your hard skills with your soft skills.
An entrepreneur should encourage and inspire others, mostly through leading by example and not just with words. Demanding and issuing instructions are simple, but setting an example as a leader is more difficult. You must understand your team, and they will be relying on you to uplift morale and help them succeed.
2. Collaborative Skills
Working well with others is a crucial component of being an entrepreneur.
According to company leaders, educators, and scholars who study entrepreneurship, collaboration, teamwork and information sharing are vital, often even more so than the ability to spot an opportunity or good deal, software development, or hardware design.
The entrepreneurial mindset is made up of a “critical mix of success-oriented attitudes of initiative, intelligent risk-taking, teamwork, and opportunity recognition,” among other things.
In many programmes across higher education, notably in engineering education, entrepreneurship education has grown in importance. Creating an entrepreneurial mindset in students is an objective of entrepreneurship education. Furthermore, the capacity for empathy is a crucial trait of an entrepreneurial mindset.
The ability to comprehend and value the thoughts, feelings, and experiences of others is fostered by empathy, a cognitive and affective process. An essential entrepreneurial skill is insight and respect for the wants and desires of community members because entrepreneurship is about introducing innovations into a community.
4. Being Authentic and Trustworthy
One of the buzzwords that are used frequently at management and leadership seminars is “authenticity.” While this overuse may consign it to the realm of “blue sky thinking” (also known as management-meeting-related fluff), the reality is that authenticity is crucial for entrepreneurs to build trust among their team as well as being trusted in the marketplace.
“Consistency over time builds trust.”
Building trust with our staff, our investors, our bankers, our customers, and our potential customers is one of our major challenges as entrepreneurs. Without faith, we will bumble around without ever getting far. Additionally, trust is a fragile concept. Trust must be earned over time, but it can be lost in an instant.
One of the most important skills a business owner must master is negotiation, which may not be their favorite subject. To agree with someone whose interests do not exactly coincide with yours, negotiation is a conversation.
Any conversation can be advanced past the deadlock of an initial “no” with the use of negotiation skills.
You shouldn’t undervalue the value of negotiation. It all comes down to learning how to speak clearly so that everyone is satisfied. You need to comprehend someone else’s perspective to negotiate very successfully – which means you must be an excellent listener before you even start speaking.
Being adept at business networking is essential for entrepreneurs. Business networking is all about establishing connections between people whose businesses can mutually benefit. The advantages you anticipate from effective networking are the reason why networking is done. The entrepreneur must be certain of the goals he or she has for networking. You should add some influential people to your network so that your impact will increase.
Building strong relationships with other entrepreneurs in the entrepreneurial ecosystem can be facilitated by communication and a strong presence. They could be of various ages, nationalities, and interest areas.
Conferences for business and networking offer specific chances to expand your network. Because many participants meet up after the session, regardless of their professional backgrounds and interpersonal relationships, to exchange knowledge, advice, inspiration, and other motivating factors. A rule of thumb is, refrain from pitching your company immediately. Instead, pause and make an effort to understand the circumstances before you do any marketing or networking.
Every entrepreneur should be a strong communicator. Regardless of whether a person owns a small business or manages a Fortune 500 corporation, they must be able to communicate successfully with all current and potential customers.
An entrepreneur must have the ability to interact with colleagues, mentors, consumers, creditors, and investors. It is doubtful that a business will succeed if the owner cannot articulate the value of their enterprise.
Is there a soft skill course entrepreneurs can do?
Nowadays, you can learn just about anything online, from technical skills like Photoshop and network engineering to soft ones like project management and negotiation.
At The Confident Communicator, we can help you achieve your goals by helping you hone your soft skills. Our courses are structured in a way to help you identify your weaknesses and improve upon them. Simple activities and consistent practice will have you mastered all these skills in no time.
Deepma is a co-founder and trainer at The Confident Communicator, and is having the time of her life empowering children, teenagers, women, corporate executives, friends and family live their best life. She helps people become effective in the art and science of communication, build their self esteem, and conquer their deepest fears. She conducts training programs in Communication Skills, Leadership and Assertiveness for young adults and corporates, and has co-developed several products in line with the Company’s mission of Empowerment.
"Our kids are grappling with the pressures of social media, stalking and seeking instant gratification, and it is our duty to help them rise above these influences and empower them to build positive self worth, and resilience."