Soft Skill Definitions

Owiwi’s scientific team has carried out extensive literature research in order to identify the core competencies / skills that organizations are seeking from potential employee’s and talents in the labor market. Special attention was paid to the necessary competencies recruiters and HR managers consider as skills of the future as these “human skills” will be vital to the success and longevity of businesses around the world.

As machines have begun to replace human jobs, it’s important that humans work on their “human skills” in order to remain competitive. Technology will inevitably play an increasingly important role in the future workplace. It is for that reason that developing the soft skills of tomorrow in workplaces today, will provide employees with the opportunity to use the very skills that make them human to work with their future AI coworkers and not against them.

With that in mind, we derived eight (8) of the most important core competencies / skills that are most sought in applicants and employee’s today – and were subsequently incorporated into the Owiwi Assessment tool to offer an innovative solution that can measure them effectively.

WHAT WE MEASURE

Accountability

Adaptability

Decision Making

Willingness to Change

Integrity

Learning Agility

Resilience

Teamwork

Project Management

Entrepreneurship

People Support

Below you can see which competencies these are as well as their definitions which originated from theory and previous empirical research in the fields of management and psychology.

Accountability

Accountability refers to an individuals’ implicit or explicit expectations that their behaviors and decisions will be evaluated, and the beliefs that rewards or sanctions will be dependent on this evaluation. It reflects the expected evaluation by a salient audience and the consequences for the potential evaluation which drive one’s actions or decisions. As accountability implies an expectation of a potential evaluation, individuals place themselves on defending their decisions or actions in case of being subject to evaluation.

Adaptability

Adaptability, or the capacity to adapt, refers to the ability to deal with change successfully and adjust to different or new environments. It is associated with a person’s sense of self-confidence and an overall sense of self-competence in changing circumstances. Adaptability is useful in dealing with uncertainty, ambiguity and stress and is often associated with career progress and career success.

Decision Making

Decision-making refers to both the process and the skill to come up with a decision quickly and effectively. Competent decision-making requires several key skills including the ability to understand information, integrate information in an internally consistent manner, identify the relevance of information and explore the different alternatives. In other words, decision-making is the thought process of weighting the positives and negatives of each option, forecasting their outcomes, and based on these, selecting the best logical choice from the available options for a particular situation, which will bring the best possible outcome.

Willingness to Change

Willingness to change is defined as an individual’s drive to adapt to changing situations or to exhibit appropriate behavioral responses in different situations where necessary. Willingness to change in an employee’s behavior represents the ability to remain adaptable and take on new, unexpected duties and tasks as opposed to being confided to routine behaviors. It is related to the ability to demonstrate behaviors that can be adapted to situation-specific demands.

Integrity

Integrity refers to the attitudes and beliefs such as moral principles, that individuals refuse to change. It is based on an individuals’ personal values and morals, defining what they believe to be fundamentally right or wrong in a condition which, in turn, is reflected in their behavior. In other words, integrity reflects an inclination to engage in moral behavior and is related to work and work-related activity in general. In organisational settings, integrity refers to an employee’s general posture toward work that defines personal beliefs and work behavior.

Learning Agility

Learning agility refers to the willingness and ability to learn from experience and use the new knowledge acquired, effectively. In this sense, agile learners possess characteristics and attributes that enable them to learn from experience, by developing or reviewing their job related knowledge or skills, and apply that learning to perform successfully and effectively in new situations at work. Learning agility can be defined as a “metacompetency”, an attribute that is essential for individuals to have in order to develop other competences, such as leadership effectiveness.

Resilience

Resilience refers to the ability to recover or bounce back from setbacks and failures, adapt well to changes and to keep going in the face of adversity. It is associated with emotional stamina and describes people who display courage and adaptability in the wake of life’s misfortunes, assisting individuals to deal with or bounce back successfully from failures, difficulties and personal or professional disappointments. High resilience is often associated with a sense of competence, optimism and hope.

Teamwork

Teamwork reflects the quality of interpersonal interactions within a team. It is the outcome of acts, of a united group of people sharing a common vision or goal who work towards its accomplishment. It refers to the means by which team members use and share their resources (e.g., knowledge, experience, information) for the sake of the team and its success. Teamwork consists of the cognitive, verbal, and behavioral activities that members undertake in order to pursue the teams’ goals and yield meaningful results for the team.

Project Management

Entrepreneurship

People Support

To conclude, based on empirical research and market insights – we consider the above soft skills as critical qualities that are important both for employers and employees in today’s changing work environment. These are core competencies for every talent – whether they are a recent graduate or a senior level manager.

Given their importance as a hiring criteria, it is therefore essential for organizations to be able to assess them using valid, reliable and objective assessment tools, which are based on sound scientific methodologies. The Owiwi Assessment Tool meets all the gold standards in psychometric testing with regards to construct validity, reliability and applicant reactions; and allows recruiters and HR managers alike to tap into talent profiles with greater accuracy and unprecedented convenience – whilst offering a more fun and innovative experience to participants.