Using feedback from 2,000 business leaders, LinkedIn created a “roadmap” for employees and job seekers on how to leap ahead.  According to LinkedIn:

First, let’s start with the skills all professionals should learn, regardless of what they do. These are “soft” skills, although in practice they are anything but: 57 percent of leaders say soft skills are more important than hard skills.

So, what are the soft skills companies need most in 2018? To find out, we surveyed 2,000 business leaders and asked them the soft skills they’d most like to see their employees learn.

So what are the four soft skills LinkedIn identified leaders are looking for?

  1. Leadership:  This is a skill that has been valued since the beginning of time, and the demand for it only grows.  Through 25 years of applied research I’ve studied leadership and narrowed in on what makes a leader that rises to the top.  This led to the development of LEAP: Leadership Effectiveness and Potential, which is a framework and program that includes four types of mastery which help individuals achieve greater success.  High performers exhibit personal, interpersonal, organizational, and motivational mastery.  I am passionate about helping individuals grow as leaders by expanding results, leveraging relationships, integrating their environment, and inspiring performance.
  2. Communication: Effective leaders use open, honest, and direct communication. They find opportunities to have in-person conversations. It’s no wonder it is one of the top soft skills employers are seeking, the benefits of effective communication are far-reaching; it builds relationships, contributes to growth, supports strong teams, and facilitates innovation. It’s not enough to have bold ideas and plans, we must communicate clearly, including expressing ideas in person and in writing, and focused in-depth listening.
  3. Collaboration: Employers don’t just want bright minds, they want bright minds who can collaborate with others to produce or create a result. Collaborating increases our influence and effectiveness. Working together can create greater impact and stronger results than working alone or than sabotaging each other. President Abraham Lincoln’s famous statement gets to the heart of the matter: “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” Group environments allow us to leverage the strengths of those around us to boost the magnitude of our results and expand innovative breakthroughs.
  4. Time Management: Treating time as a precious commodity is a value we either put into action or not. The leader’s time management skills have a far reaching collateral impact. By consciously respecting the use of time in a group, we are treating those around us as the precious resources they are. Time management in leadership is about respect for others, freeing them to live and work respectfully of everyone from colleagues to clients, customers and other constituencies.


DR. MARTA WILSON is the founder of The LEAP Enterprise, best-selling author, creator of the LEAP app, an industrial-organizational psychologist, and the CEO of Transformation Systems, Inc. (TSI). Marta has dedicated her career to leadership consultancy while serving as board member, author, catalyst, coach, mentor, researcher, speaker, trainer, volunteer, and fundraiser. With a passion to share proven strategies that drive client results, Marta has authored several business books including LEAP, Energized Enterprise, Everybody’s Business, Leaders in Motion and the Transformation Desktop Guide. Specializing in leadership effectiveness, Marta holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in industrial and organizational psychology from Virginia Tech and a B.A. in academic psychology from the University of Tennessee.