Soft Skills Matter--Especially These 5!

Author name
Alicia Rhodes, Assistant Director, Duke University Career Center

As the academic year comes to end and you are off to enjoy your summer, please take a moment to reflect on the year you have had and what you have learned along the way. Throughout this summer you may find yourself using some of the knowledge you learned from your classes and projects to showcase the skills you have developed during your first year at Duke and that is amazing! While using those skills, do not forget how important soft skills are as well.

“The number one reason why people get hired is because of their technical skills. The number one reason people lose their job is because of soft skills.” –Chris Czarnik

I recently attended a summit in which we had employer guest speakers, such as Chris Czarnik, and an employer panel where employers discussed the importance of students not just having technical skills, but also having soft skills and grit!

Take a look at the five soft skills the employers at this summit value the most:

  1. Communication
  2. Creativity
  3. Initiative
  4. Problem Solving
  5. Teamwork/Leadership

Soft skills don’t come easy for everyone and we can all work on improving in one or a few of these areas. As you go throughout your daily routines, try to take steps to improve these soft skills, as they can make a great impact in your future success.

If you need assistance with displaying these skills in your resume, cover letter, or an interview, schedule an appointment with a career adviser through CareerConnections –if  you are not on campus, we can meet by phone or skype!


[National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) Career Readiness research and Duke Career Center Competencies for Career Management]