Why Soft Skills are more important than you think

 

Securing a seat in a good Engineering college is an uphill task in itself. Once a student has put his foot into the gateway, his focus is to learn the nuances of Engineering. And he lays impetus on gaining the hard skills which could land him to his dream job. When a student of Engineering reaches the third year he realizes that his knowledge, projects and assignments and test scores would not really suffice. He should be able to make an impression during the interview process, to walk through the golden gates of his Dream Company. Other students with the same hard skills are a stiff competition. Now what is the differentiator and how do they make an impact??

A survey of 303 employers across the country by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) in 2010 found a majority of graduates lacked adequate “soft skills” to be employed in the industry. As per the report, 75 per cent of technical graduates and more than 85 per cent of general students are unemployable.” Not taking soft skills as an essential skill is like asking for irreparable damage. Not only does an engineering student need these skills to make a head start in the job market   but they are needed to sustain the job as well.

Soft Skills are harder to learn since they involve unlearning your instinctive reactions (which were never questioned during your entire life) and replacing them with a more deliberate approach to win in every situation. Having said that, I would like to assure each and every reader that, it is not that a student can’t be brought to pace and taught this subtle art. Yes art!  Now that explains why it is so evasive!!

Colleges know that they are answerable and their success not only depends on giving the working knowledge of engineering to its students but also, the Return on investment of the money time and energy can only sustain their position as leaders.

Every college worth it’s salt is working on making students future ready, they are not only restructuring the existing learning system , working on acquiring unprecedented industry patronage and striking strategic international alliances for a holistic development but have included applicative soft skills program in their agenda.

Being a Communications Trainer, I have been working with various corporate and colleges and

One such college I have had the pleasure to work with is Arya College, Kukas Jaipur.

Arya College realized it in time that, Automation and Artificial Intelligence will result in a great proportion of jobs relying on Soft Skills. Thanks to the cutting – edge technology, task that require hard skills are continuing to decline making Soft Skills as the key differentiator in the work place. Their determination to adapt and fit into the ever changing industrial environment is extremely practical and a need of the hour.

Arya has formed a cell, called Student Development Cell (SDC) to adapt their services to the ever changing environment. Without wasting time, Arya has overhauled the entire approach towards student development. It has a very process driven SDC, which consists of extremely experienced trainers and their method of training is experiential. Which means no soft skills can be effectively taught to a student without involving his mind and it should call for an action at his end too. Just like one can’t be taught to cycle without practically getting on a cycle. Similarly one can’t be taught the Art of communication and presentation or attending an interview successfully without practically going through that process. SDC makes sure that they simulate the entire process of interview, so that it doesn’t come as a surprise to its students.

The SDC at Arya College takes its students though the four layer of simulation, to do away with the fear of English Language, basics of the language are taught to the students in the first year. Then comes, the preparation for Verbal and Aptitude tests in the second year. The third year is dedicated to technical trainings related to the concern branch, professionals and trainers are invited from the industry for a meaningful learning of the student. While the fourth year is the year of mock group discussions, debates, interviews skills, body language.

Arya calls industry specialist for the simulation of the interview environment to give its students a flavor of variety.

No wonder their industry alliances for on campus placements are swelling by the year. The robust placement is a result of a very systematic approach towards meeting the industry need and fulfilling the commitment Arya makes to its student. Fine tuning the student’s skills for a rewarding career has adequately paid off Arya turn into an industry leader!

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