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Where can I Find Good Soft Skills Training?

Where can I find good soft skills training?

You may be looking for some soft skills training.

Why?
Because you work with other people and other people can be difficult.

Face facts; some people are difficult!

If everyone thought the same thoughts, then conflict and strife would not exist.

Fortunately, we all have our own thoughts and beliefs. We all have our own thoughts and beliefs, about what is true; what is good; and what is right.

Unfortunately, we have to live and work with other people who disagree with us.

They disagree with us about what is true; good; and right.

Which causes problems.

These problems necessitate that we develop our soft skills.

Soft skills are our people skills. Soft skills are those skills that allow us to function well, in spite of the fact that you have to handle people who seem to have the wrong idea! Your Soft skills are those skills that allow you to get on with others who may be different to you; and they allow you to do even more: your soft skills will allow you to get on well with others who may be different to you and even to benefit from such differences!

What are the soft skills and how can you develop them?

The soft skills are of two types:

  1. Mental skills and attitudes.
  2. Communication skills derived from the application of the mental skills and attitudes.

But, as thought precedes all action; the soft skills start with developing the right attitudes towards others. What are the attitudes to develop in oneself and in the management team?

A recognition that variation is good and that conflict can be beneficial.

Evolutionary progress depends on variation. If everyone was identical then evolution would have nothing to work on. If your organisation is to evolve and grow it must tolerate a certain degree of variation from the norm. If the organisation is too intolerant of ideas that a deviate from the main trend, then it becomes intellectually incapacitated. In the middle ages, there was no deviation from the accepted biblical view of the world. Free thinkers like Galileo, Copernicus and Bruno where threatened with death if they continued to propagate unorthodox views. As a result, in Western Europe, between 650 A.D. to 1650 A.D., there was 1000 years of no (slow) intellectual development. No progress. We call that time the dark ages. Where orthodoxy ruled and progressive (heretical) thinking was punishable by death.

The truth is that we need to allow variation and different ideas to be expressed and judged.

So let the other person have his say. Don't be too quick to argue. Listen to what he has to say first.

Then ask yourself:

  1. Is what this person says plausible?
  2. Is there any logic to his view?

If the answer to either question is yes, then you may have learned something from difference.

Progress is only made when someone asks a new question.

Here are two great questions:

  1. Why are we still doing it this way?
  2. There must be a better way to do this: What is it?

So our advice is this:

In order to develop your soft skills you must first develop your attitude of mind.

The attitude of mind you should cultivate is one of acceptance and toleration of some difference.
The attitude of mind you should try to avoid is one of intolerance and a rejection of any idea or person that is not similar to you.
This attitude of mind will then lead to certain communication skills.

What communication skills?

Here are three to work on:

1. Listening Listen with intent to understand.

Listening with intent to understand is to be contrasted to "listening with intent to reply" and "not really listening".

Many people don't really listen when they are in conversation. They are instead merely waiting their turn to speak again. Isaac Asimov once said "I freely admit that I am too self-absorbed; I would rather talk about myself than about anything else. And I am, in that regard, very normal."

Many people don't really listen because they are in effect thinking of something else. As you are explaining your point they are thinking about what they will have for dinner.

Listening with intent to understand is the primary soft skill. It means listening with your mind fully engaged on the message, not your dinner, nor your response to the message. Listen with intent to understand.

2. Ask questions Rather than argue with others, ask them questions.

  • Avoid directly accusing the other of being wrong.
  • Avoid directly accusing the other of being stupid!

Instead ask probing questions that will uncover the fallacy or falsehood that you wish to expose.

A frontal attack on the other person rarely works because, your direct action triggers an equal, and opposite, re-action.

Instead use the Socratic Method and ask intelligent questions.

If you want to challenge someone's point, then be like a lawyer; ask questions and cross examine the evidence.

Never attack the man himself.

Let him save face.

3. If the other person has a convincing argument, then be prepared to change your mind

Be prepared to learn from others.
Don't be too rigid and orthodox.
Be free from prejudice.
Be a progressive and evolutionary thinker.
If the better way is found, then drop your old ways.
Don't fall in love with the past ways of doing things, and don't refuse to change your views.

Some people are too egotistical. They claim that they are never wrong.

Your attitude should be:
"I believe it, because the evidence suggests that it is true".

Your attitude should not be:
"I believe it to be true, now let's select the evidence that confirms my belief (and disregard any evidence that contradicts my belief)."

Your soft skills require that you are willing to:

  1. Accept opinions and people that don't look nor sound like you.
  2. Listen with intent to understand.
  3. Rather than argue, ask intelligent questions.
  4. Rather than be rigid, learn to listen to the evidence and, over time, evolve.

For more information about soft skills training visit Corporate Coach Group website

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