Employment through Education: Soft Skills for Better Employees

Many think learning the specific skills for a chooses profession is all you need to be successful in your workplace. If you want to become a chef you go to culinary school. If you want to become a welder, you go to welding school. While there are precise instructions, or hard skills, deemed necessary in order to be considered in either of these professions, there are other skills employers feel are just important.

These skills are called “soft skills” and many employers today agree new professionals are lacking them. This past October, with the help of the Crawford County READ program and the Crawford County Roundtable committee, PMI introduced students to the Employment Through Education course (ETE) to learn what soft skills are and why they are vital in the workplace.

What are Soft Skills?

While hard skills are skills that can be taught, soft skills are what many call “people skills”. They are defined as ways you relate or interact with management, coworkers, customers, and beyond. Here are few examples,

  • Time management
  • Accountability
  • Positive attitude
  • Good communications
  • Being a team player
  • Ability to accept and learn from criticism
  • Problem solving
  • Ability to multi-task

In the real world, a basic hard skill a chef-in-training will learn is how to sear a steak mid-rare for a customer without burning it. A soft-skill they’ll need to adopt is learning how to multi-task by making five other customs their food at the same time. As a beginner welder, you and your fellow welders will learn that one of the first things you do before starting a job is suiting up in protective gear for safety purposes. As you enter the welding profession, you’ll soon realize that simply showing up for work is just as vital. Being accountable, managing your time effectively and leaving your personal issues and preferences at home are all soft skills imperative to reaching your team’s target. Every welder is like a spoke in a wheel and each one has his or her own welding responsibly that makes the wheel turn. If you don’t show up for work or you can’t leave your personal issues or preferences out of the workplace, your whole team will falter.

Research indicates employers are in agreement that soft skills are lacking in today’s employees. For reasons such as safety purposes and reaching a target goal, the fabrications industry cannot run smoothly when employees lack soft skills.

To break down this barrier, PMI is adopting this special course to teach the following:

  • Ways of Thinking: Creativity, critical thinking, problem solving, learning, decision making
  • Ways of Working: Communication, collaboration, awareness, social networking, digital environment
  • Ways to Live in the World: Citizenship, life career, financial planning, personal and social responsibility

At PMI, through proper education we believe we will not only create job-ready welders, machinist and electro-mechanical technicians, but individuals whom are passionate about their job. If you’re interested in learning more about the ETE course or any of our courses, please call us 814-333-2415 or visit us online at http://www.pmionline.edu.

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