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Soft skills are crucial to a successful career. They can’t be taught in a classroom or measured on paper, but they can be detected by hiring managers. Degrees, certifications, and years of experience don’t mean much without the proper combination of soft skills. Here are five soft skills you need to develop right now to get noticed and advance your career.

Oral and written communication

It’s hard to be successful in business if you can’t have positive interactions with other people. If you can’t express important details and set the right expectations for a completed project, you’re setting yourself and maybe your company up for failure. You need to be clear, kind, and professional. Emails should be concise, straightforward, and without typos. In person, you should maintain eye contact, speak clearly, and use confident body language.

Teamwork

A company’s success is almost always dependent upon many people working together for a common goal. Everyone has different talents and responsibilities, and when everyone does his part, not only does the company succeed, but the work of the individuals looks better, too. It also helps you gain friends at work and influence among your co-workers.

Attention to detail

Paying attention to details is critical. You need to be able to analyze data, research, think critically, and take appropriate action A typo in your resume is a very obvious sign that you lack critical observation skills. Many hiring managers will toss out your resume right then and there. Slow down and be more careful to make sure your work is the best it can be.

Problem-solving

Adaptability is a big part of being able to problem-solve. You need to be able to pivot and find alternate solutions without being rigid or stubborn when things don’t go your way. Employers are always looking for people who can show initiative and solve problems on their own, without complaining or burdening the boss. Instead, pause, think methodically, research possible solutions, and take action.

Conflict resolution is another important piece to problem-solving. Be able to work with a variety of people and work constructively through disagreements.  Positive relationships with co-workers are a must in a healthy workplace and essential to advancing your career.

Leadership

Becoming a leader in a company is a great way to get you noticed by others and set you up for promotion and a higher salary. Leadership doesn’t necessarily mean imposing your will on others—it means having confidence and being able to inspire others to have the same confidence. A company functions best when all employees work to their best potential so an individual who can help that happen is really valuable.

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