4 must-have workplace skills for professionals

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2025 is just six years away. If you think about, the past decade literally flew past in a jiffy. And, so will the years to come.

If you are a professional who wants to climb to the higher ranks of the corporate ladder, I have some news for you. The knowledge and skills that your school and college imparted is no longer sufficient to be a sought-after professional.

In fact, some top employers of the world like Google, Apple, Starbucks, IBM, etc. no longer require employees to have a college degree. Today, it is skills that is worth their weight in gold than a college degree.

You need to have skills that go beyond the cliches of a team player, disciplined, hard-working and the likes. The future workforce needs skills that will make them an asset for the entire company, not just for a team or a function.

Here are some such skills you might want to add to your profile and resume.

Critical thinking

In life as well in a workplace, every professional need to take decisions, in fact, more decisions will have to be taken impromptu at a workplace. But, decision-making is not something that can be taught. It is more of a skill that requires one to be capable of critical thinking. Critical thinking enables you to think of a problem/scenario from multiple perspectives.

It involves analyzing, applying standards, seeking information, logical reasoning, predicting outcomes and transform such knowledge to others when required. In other words, critical thinking is a skill that lets you take a bird’s eye view of a ground-level detail.

Soft skills

Soft skills, also referred to as interpersonal skills are what enables an individual to interact and communicate with others easily. It teaches you the social rules and etiquette that one must follow during verbal and nonverbal communication in public settings. Interpersonal skills development is something that every professional must place high on their priorities, at par with professional education.

Why is this skill important today and will also remain important in the future? The future workplaces want their team to be proactive individuals who can ideate, express communication. You will also have to work alongside professionals from diverse cultural and social backgrounds. Enough said you need ample interpersonal skills to feel comfortable in a diverse social setting. You must know how to behave with a diverse range of people without saying or doing anything that leaves your foot in your mouth.

Collaboration

Corporations are increasingly inching towards a remote work culture. Telecommuting is fast on the rise as more and more employees find it convenient to work from the comfort of their homes. As a result, the future of workplaces will have less physical interaction and more of remote collaboration.

Professionals will have to connect and communicate with each other through collaboration tools to achieve the same goal. But, collaboration is not any skill to master. It requires one to proactively reach out and interact with people. It goes beyond just sending an email or editing a shared document online. A 21st-century professional must have collaboration as an essential skill in his/her toolkit.

Creativity

If there is one skill which has helped mankind find solutions to the most difficult problems, it is creativity. From inventing the wheel to the latest artificial intelligence, every single thing that we use today is a result of creativity. Professionals of 2025 and beyond will need more of it to find solutions to the toughest problems.

They cannot bank solely on textbook theories and solutions. There will be a time when one will have to think not just out of the box, but literally like there is no box at all. For that, creativity is essential. Creativity helps you approach a problem from a different perspective and think of solutions that are not already found. Marketing, designing, customer service, product design – almost every major business function will require professionals to have creativity.

What lies ahead

Five years from now workplaces and professionals will evolve to take new forms. The evolutionary process has already started. If you are a professional who has already begun a career or is in the process of kickstarting on, here are some skills to add to your profile. They will help you stay relevant in your workplace as well as facilitate a healthy career progression in the long-run.

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