Employment Resources

Soft Skills Needed to Succeed on the Job

Soft skills are everyday interpersonal skills that job seekers need to succeed on the job. They include communicating clearly and appropriately, remembering work directions, working well with others, and knowing how to solve problems. These skills will help youth succeed in life no matter what they are doing. They are necessary for youth to succeed in education, job training, independent living, community participation, and, ultimately, in the workplace.

Six Key Skill Areas


Learning when and how to communicate in a business setting is an important soft skill. Some only experience communication as it is at home, or with their friends and peers. However, communicating in the workplace is very different. You must learn how to communicate with supervisors, co-workers, and customers and /or clients. In addition, listening is a big component of communicating effectively.


It is important for all to be enthusiastic and have a positive attitude in the workplace. Turn negative thinking into positive thinking and display and discuss enthusiasm during an interview and on the job.


Successful businesses rely on team players and teaching youth the elements of teamwork is another essential soft skill. In the workplace, knowing how and when to lead and follow takes practice, as does knowing how to avoid unnecessary conflict. Further, knowing how to resolve conflicts, negotiate and compromise are all important skills for everyone to develop.


Networking is essential to career growth and advancement. Networking is the process or practice of building and maintaining informal relationships or exchanges of information that are supportive of professional or career goals. Learning the skill of making those connections about employment goals, interests, and desires through contacts from friends, family members, and acquaintances is an important soft skill.


Problem solving and critical thinking refers to the ability to use knowledge, facts, and data to effectively solve workplace problems, as well as knowing how to use these skills in a variety of settings, including working with teams and working with disgruntled clients or customers. Learn to solve problems in a variety of ways and settings.


Professionalism contains many elements, including: resume creation, how to dress properly for work, attendance and timeliness, and appropriate use cell phones and computers. Further, being professional is also knowing how to communicate with supervisors, peers, customers, and / or clients.