In a year dominated by a pandemic (and the difficult decisions that had to be made by employers), it's understandable if you're looking forward to the New Year, and the opportunities it may bring.
With the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine receiving regulatory approval for use in the UK at the beginning of December (Canada and the United States have also recently followed suit), we're now another step closer to the light at the end of the tunnel.
And, with an increasing number of companies choosing to stick with remote working, or introduce more flexible working weeks in 2021, then it's safe to say that the workplace in 2024 is going to look very different when compared to twelve months ago.
By now, your focus will be shifting towards the skills that your workforce is going to need in 2024. After all, you'll be wanting teams to continue working efficiently after the festive break and well into the New Year. We’ve put together five skills that your employees will need in 2024.
The skills your employees will need in 2024
For employees to thrive in the workplace of 2024, there is going to be an emphasis on the importance of interpersonal (or ''soft'') skills. These skills include:
- Communication & collaboration
- Work ethic
- Positive attitude
We've recently talked about the importance of interpersonal skills in the workplace. But, as we head towards a New Year, these skills are going to prove incredibly useful for employees looking to progress in a (potentially) post-COVID world.
Communication & collaboration
In 2020, we have seen more companies putting an increased focus on the importance of communication in the workplace; which is understandable, when you consider that teams have to be able to work well together (whether physically or virtually), in order to be successful.
At this point, it's looking likely that ''normal'' life is not going to resume on January 1. Thus, the workforce is going to be looking at working from home for another few months at least. So, with this in mind, it's surprising to learn that good communication skills are lacking in the workforce.
Communication is crucial. The success of a team is almost entirely dependent on the personal efforts of its members. To work well together (even when apart), then your workforce needs to be able to communicate effectively, to continue working well in the New Year.
Communicating and listening go hand-in-hand. Not only are they crucial for understanding the wants and needs of clients, but they can help employees better understand their teammates.
Indeed, active listening is far more comfortable in person - you're less likely to get distracted when talking to someone face-to-face than when you're on a group call!
According to career expert Wendi Weiner, employees who can demonstrate that they're proficient in listening skills are "often attentive, have high attention to detail, and are excellent at connecting with others". Regardless of the sector your business falls into; there's no denying that employees who can display those skills will perform well.
In 2020, many employees have had to be self-sufficient with their work ethic, which some will have found more manageable than others.
In October, a survey by the BCO revealed that two-thirds of workers believed their career had been helped by relationships made in the office. And, for junior workers, who aren't as experienced, the move to working from home may have harmed those relationships.
When many are living in shared houses, they're missing out on the training and guidance which they would usually receive from more experienced colleagues. This only reinforces the importance of honing these skills in 2024.
Even before the pandemic struck, nearly two-thirds of employees had experienced a negative effect on their personal life, as a direct result of an unhealthy work-life balance. As we said at the beginning of the pandemic - you wouldn't do it in the office, so why are you doing it at home?
Maintaining a positive attitude at work in 2020 has been difficult. We often underestimate the importance of a positive attitude in the workplace.
But, while those with a positive attitude are more likely to be able to remain hopeful (even when the situation seems hopeless), and always look on the bright side of life, those with a negative attitude are typically more pessimistic, and will always expect the worst.
Being able to maintain a positive attitude within the workforce can help alleviate stress within teams, and maintain useful relationships within the workplace.
During trying times, staying positive is all the more critical. You can find the good in any situation if you look closely enough - instead of focussing on the negatives of this working year, concentrate on the positives - there will have been some.
Everyone - from the fresh-faced graduate to the CEO of the conglomerate - has faced self-doubt at some time in their career. But, nobody ever got any better at something by beating themselves up about it!
As we head towards another few months (at least) of working from home, a lack of self-confidence could hold employees back.
And, like all interpersonal skills, self-confidence can be honed. From presenting work via a virtual meeting to maintaining a good relationship with colleagues, employees will be able to become more confident, while also optimising work output.
Interpersonal skills training offered by MDA Training
Across the working world, every sector has been affected by COVID-19. Businesses have been forced to accelerate their digital transformations, and have, in turn, pivoted towards the latest developments and technologies to see them through the uncertainty caused by the pandemic.
Here at MDA Training, we have been no different. When the world locked down, we helped organisations unlock potential - albeit, virtually.
That’s why we offer a range of interpersonal skills training modules, which can be tweaked and tailored to best suit the needs of your employees.
Through our virtual learning programmes, your employees will learn the skills they need to stay relevant in an increasingly competitive world. Plus, they'll be honing the ''soft'' skills they need to complete their role to the highest standard.
All of our virtual modules are almost entirely experiential, taking your workforce through a range of scenarios and outcomes.
By assisting employees in these safe scenarios, you can rest-assure, knowing they are adequately prepared to take on these situations should they arise in the ''real'' world!