Emotional Intelligence in the Age of Robots
When asked recently what top skills were a top priority in the hiring decision-making process, a majority of companies reported that although hard skills were important, they did give higher consideration to soft skills. We’re talking here about job candidates who show greater skill in everyday human interaction, such as in communication, empathy, and overall emotional intelligence. At this stage when everyone is talking about the importance of advanced tech skills, the revelation was a surprise.
Even as scientists work to build robots expected to take over human roles, leadership is still searching for potential employees with soft skills. While everyone appears to be concerned that robots and technology will eventually take over many jobs, those involved in the hiring process are still vying for human feelings.
Soft skills has gotten a bad rep lately. Look to any workplace environment and you’ll find a cutthroat mentality. Many times encouraged by those in leadership who pit one employee against the other, and other times the competition evolves naturally among coworkers. The general stereotype out there is that anyone can master soft skills. We are human after all, but that’s farthest from the truth. It takes practice and a genuine intention to lead by compassion. Which is why emotional intelligence has won a place in science-prone studies such as economics. Behavioral economics, although around for sometime, is a new phenomenon when compared to its other branches of study. There are even courses and workshops offered to understand and hone soft skills among the working population, especially for those who plan to make their way up the proverbial “corporate” ladder.
Which is why it’s important when reviewing that resume before it’s submitted to a job posting, to ensure that not only can you display emotional intelligence during an interview, but that the resume itself reveals evidence of those skills. This can be accomplished by listing whatever soft skills you’ve acquired throughout your career history under the “objectives” and “skills” sections of a resume, but also highlighting those precise skills under the job listings as well.
While we continue to wait and see just how far technology will impact the workforce, we have to remember that robots are not equipped to feel or empathize or even sympathise. It will be up to the humans behind the technology to use those valuable skills to lead a company toward its final goals. With or without robots, a well-equipped staff, led by a management team ready to deal with the complexities of emotions, will determine whether a company rises or falls in the long-run.