A special teacher can make a student feel inspired, as if they could do anything in the world, if they get involved. Unfortunately, that student may enter another teacher’s class with a sense of overarching fear. One teacher can raise one mind while the other seems destined to destroy. The difference between the two teachers lies in the soft skills.
Depending on who you ask, soft skills are roughly defined as social skills. Kate Lorenz, editor at CareerBuilder.com, says that soft skills “refer to a collection of personal qualities, habits, attitudes, and social grace that make someone a good employee and to work with.” The most important of these skills are professionalism / work ethics, oral and written communication, teamwork / collaboration and critical thinking / problem solving. It is precisely these skills that educators want to impart to their students.
On an average day, teachers work with a large number of people. Soft skills mean the ability to successfully master the needs of these people. A teacher must use their oral and written communication skills on a daily basis to effectively convey information to their students. A teacher uses teamwork and collaboration in every school-wide function, including faculty meetings. Without critical thinking and problem-solving skills, the teacher cannot effectively control class behavior or student progress.
A successful teacher will find that their voice and vocabulary work wonders that no other device can. Another important thing to think about is your attitude, which includes proper planning and an eagerness to create sensations in the classroom. A teacher has to adapt to the situation; he must bring an appropriate mix of rigidity and flexibility that allows him to sometimes create humor to drive the monologue away. One should be careful enough not to violate anyone’s cultural or religious beliefs. As challenging as such things are, they are not without satisfaction when seriously practiced. If teachers remain aware of the importance of such soft skills in the classroom, it will not only create an appropriate relationship between teacher and teacher, but will also ensure our competence and admiration.
Teachers have different roles. The main role is the content expert. However, this role alone is not enough to describe the work of teachers. Teachers are also advisors, managers, motivators, and advisors. Teachers are decision makers too. Every teacher needs to be involved in an ongoing series of decisions. The areas are planning decisions, teaching and administrative decisions as well as assessment decisions.
In addition to professional competence and work experience, educational institutions are looking for various soft skills from teachers. The twenty-first century workplace does not require teachers who are “walking encyclopedias”, but rather independent and resilient people who are performance-oriented and have a high self-esteem; compelling and effective communicators; emotionally intelligent; good problem solvers and decision makers with analytical and creative minds; fast and lifelong learners; good team players; and ethically with a high degree of integrity (morally intelligent).
For teachers, the ability to use effective soft skills can make or break a career. While it may seem obvious that such skills would play an important role in a classroom, soft skills are also paramount when working with parents, administrators, and other teachers.
Ajit Singh holds a Masters in Economics from Delhi University. In addition to his diverse interests, he has a passion for philosophy, psychology, soft skills and related topics. Following the family tradition, he was employed as an administrative officer in the Indian Air Force. He specialized in the selection of officers for commissioning after completing a course at the Defense Psychological Research Institute in Delhi. After his retirement he did research and became a trainer for soft skills and emotional intelligence, including life skills. He is an avid writer and occasional poet.