Main image of article The Power of Soft Skills: Proving You’re More Than Your Techstack

While having a diversified set of tech skills is a must-have, so-called soft skills are increasingly necessary for both businesses and employees to grow and thrive. As our world continues to evolve, innovate, and rely on optimized technology, many individuals fear they will be rendered useless or replaced by robots or advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools. While that may be a genuine concern, it overlooks and underestimates the critical nature of human skills. Often referred to as soft skills, embracing and refining these five key characteristics will set you apart in all that you do -- but especially within your organization.

Emotional Intelligence

Perhaps the greatest of these soft skills is emotional intelligence, or empathy. The ability to understand emotion on a deep level is not only a crucial component to our own self-awareness, but also to interacting with individuals around us. Emotional intelligence has multiple domains, but competency implies that one is able to achieve self-awareness, social awareness, and recognize the emotions of others. Mastering emotional intelligence helps us to be true and authentic leaders, and improves our interpersonal relationships, both inside and outside of the workforce.

Complex decision-making & critical thinking

Critical thinking and complex decision-making go hand in hand. While advanced technology allows for data-driven decision-making, humans have the ability to think critically to analyze and weigh complex scenarios with far more than just surface-level details. We can consider the larger context of a situation. When it comes to business practices, that can mean understanding the significance of a world or political event, recognizing the importance of pursuing DEI initiatives, navigating a difficult economic period, and so much more. The best leaders are those who are thoughtful, deliberate, and considerate of all circumstances before making a decision.


Despite how valuable it can be, curiosity is a soft skill that too often gets overlooked or is under appreciated. The impulse to explore and seek out information and experiences, and question just about everything should be highly coveted, especially amongst organizations. Curiosity indicates an openness and willingness to learn. When one is driven to seek out new skills, information, and insights, not only does it communicate initiative and interest, but it leads to knowledge expansion. Leaning into and displaying your curiosity will show those around you that you are open-minded and committed to your work, as well as your own growth and self-evolution.


No matter how one interprets creativity – as innovation, problem-solving, experimentation, or otherwise – its power is innate. Some people naturally identify as creative thinkers, while others feel that creativity is less inherent within them. Either way, fully embracing your ability to think outside of the box, and using your uninhibited imagination, can lead to novel ideas. And, because your creative thinking and solutions are unique to you, identifying with and owning your creativity can quickly set you apart in your organization as a leader – not a rebel.


Lastly, an incredibly meaningful soft skill to hone is the essence of teamwork. Many of the skills we’ve discussed are interpersonal in nature, and teamwork is the ultimate among them. Especially in an organizational setting, strengthening one’s workplace relationships and embracing a team dynamic is crucial. A commitment to teamwork relays the message that one is dynamic, flexible, and a capable communicator and effective collaborator. While it can be tempting to take on lofty solo projects in an effort to prove yourself, in reality it speaks volumes to embody a team player mindset.

Despite the ways that technology continues to evolve, soft skills will remain irreplaceable and very necessary human strengths. While this list is not comprehensive (there are a lot of other valuable soft skills to be had!), embodying these five characteristics is certain to make you stand out within your organization. Remember to find ways to refine and expand your soft skills as eagerly as you upskill in the tech arena as they are vital to your career success.