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Lack of Sex Appeal Notwithstanding, Soft Skills DO Matter in IT

One of the benefits of a slight degree of notoriety -- or name recognition, at least -- is that one gets the occasional request to write or blog about IT certification for a variety of outlets and Websites. Over the past couple of decades that has meant working for a handful of training companies that include Global Knowledge, New Horizons, Pluralsight, Cramsession/PrepLogic, and others. Just this morning I got a phone call from one of them asking for articles and analysis, along with a request for IT cert topics worth covering. When I got on one of my favorite hobbyhorses  in response -- namely, the value of soft skills to IT professionals -- the reaction was tepid: "We've tried that, and it didn't resonate well with our audience."

More about the person than they are about the topic,
soft skills emphasize the human dimension in IT.

Alas, whether or not it resonates well with the audience, soft skills are quite important to IT professionals even if they too often take a back seat to more hard-boiled technical topics and pursuits. As the results of this Google Search will illustrate, I've blogged and written repeatedly for PITC on the topic of soft skills (as I also have for other sites that include Certification Magazine, Tom's IT Pro, and others).

Like it or not, resonant with IT professionals interested in career development and advancement or not, soft skills are indeed important. More than simply worth pursuing and developing, they can make the difference between long-term career advancement and success versus long-term career stagnation and immobility. That's why I offer up this list of my "greatest hits" -- the most useful and informative articles, actually -- on the subject of soft skills and their nourishment and development for IT pros:

The bottom line, of course, is that cultivating and improving skills in written and oral communication, as well as people and project management, can be an incredible career booster for IT professionals (and workers in all walks of life). Put this on your to-do list for personal and professional development, and you will surely earn dividends on the time and energy you invest in such skills for the rest of your (working) life!