Careers within the Information Technology (IT) sector may seem to rely on some of the hardest of hard skills. IT is an insular field, dependent on very specific knowledge. However, like any industry, you won’t get ahead with just the baseline knowledge required to do your day-to-day job. You’ll need to cultivate soft skills in order to take your career to the next level.
Of course, the IT industry is a highly technical one. Success relies on a strong grasp of technology and the development of a very specific set of skills. However, you can’t rely on those talents alone. You need to supplement your IT-specific knowledge with additional competencies.
Here’s where the soft skills come in. These are the broader abilities that can be applied across disciplines. Soft skills act as multipliers. Apply them to your already existent IT competency, and you will fast-track your career advancement.
Here are six soft skills that every IT pro needs to reach the highest levels of success in the field:
Things change over time, especially in a fast-moving field like IT. You must be ready for anything that develops. That means not getting set in your ways and being willing to learn new skills on the fly.
Employers don’t want paycheck players. They want people who can put in the extra effort and excel. Developing a strong work ethic gives you the added edge to impress your manager(s) and push your career to the next level.
Here is the most basic career advice you’ll receive: establish and maintain a healthy professional network. Making contacts with other people in the IT field opens the door to additional opportunities. It also provides you with important information about ongoing changes within the industry, as well as insider intelligence about the companies you might apply to one day.
IT can be a jargon-ladened sector. It’s often hard to express important concepts in ways that people outside the industry (such as clients or potential clients) will understand. If you can develop strong communication skills, including the ability to describe complicated issues in simple terms, it will boost your value immensely.
You not only need to communicate with your network or with the public, you also need to work well with co-workers and managers. Most IT roles require collaboration with co-workers. The better you are at operating in a team environment, the more in demand you will be.
Advancement in any field often means moving into managerial roles. To get higher-level positions and increased compensation, it will be desirable for you to develop leadership skills. Look for ways to take charge and develop management competencies. It will set you up for potential promotions in the future.
Get Further With Soft Skills
Developing soft skills often requires the right environment. A high-performance recruiting firm, like Recruiting in Motion, can steer you to IT assignments that let you nurture the abilities you need to succeed long term. Contact Recruiting in Motion today to find out how we can help jump-start your career.