The most valuable freelancer soft skills you can learn

As the coronavirus pandemic rages on and many of us are isolated from the wider world, if possible, you should consider sharpening up your soft skills.

In the digital age, the professional landscape is ever-evolving. As such, the hard skills that are relevant today could become obsolete tomorrow—meaning that as a freelance expert, upskilling your formal competencies is a lifelong journey.

But, if you have the right portfolio of soft skills, not only will you appear more attractive to prospective clients or employers, but you will become more adaptable to change while gaining the ability to better manage your professional studies.

At present, 94% of organisations across industries believe that soft skills are essential to success. Moreover, 67% of HR managers would hire a person with solid soft skills even if their hard skills are limited.

The acquisition of soft skills is essential to your growth as a freelance expert as these competencies will always be valuable, and relevant—even in a landscape which is always on the move.

If you’re pondering brushing up on your soft skill set but you’re not sure where to place your efforts, never fear, because here is a rundown of five key areas you should focus on in the coming months.

Persuasion

Right now, businesses need professionals that can jump on a project and persuade both internal and external stakeholders to buy-in to a particular strategy or initiative.

If you have strong, persuasive communication skills, you will become invaluable to a broad range of clients as one of the most important factors of a successful campaign is to make sure that everyone is working towards one common goal.

Collaboration

A high-functioning team will usually achieve greater success than even the most talented of individuals.

Collaboration is one of the cornerstones of commercial growth in 2020 (and beyond). If you are able to play an active role in the collaborative process and learn how to work with a variety of teams cohesively, you are likely to be in demand for years to come.

Creativity

Studies show that creativity is related to nine of the top 10 skills that global executives state is vital for 2020 and beyond.

Creativity comes in many forms and if you’re able to think outside the box and develop innovative solutions to the toughest of challenges consistently, you will accelerate your success in the expert economy, exponentially.

If you have spare time at the moment, filling it with artistic studies, reading, and problem-solving exercises will help you unleash your inner creativity.

Time Management

Managers waste an average of three hours a day on interruptions. In business, time is indeed money—and if you are able to manage your time effectively, you will prove indispensable to most potential clients.

Armed with a proven track record of time management, you will be incredibly desirable because people will be able to trust you to get the job done to stringent deadlines, despite roadblocks or distractions.

An essential soft skill for 2020, and long into the future.

Emotional intelligence

A soft skill that is in hot demand at the moment, emotional intelligence is the ability process, perceive, and respond effectively to your thoughts or feelings, often in pressured situations.

If you’re able to enhance your emotional intelligence and respond effectively to those you’re working with, you will work more effectively in a variety of circumstances while approaching challenges with a balanced, productive mindset.

In the current climate, we are all getting a lesson in emotional intelligence. Build on these foundations and you will catalyse your success as a freelance expert.

“It is not the strongest or most intelligent who will survive, but those who can best manage change.”—Charles Darwin

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