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141. RIP Soft Skills: Positivity

“College can train you for a career.” “You’ll always be taught the skills you need once you’re hired.” “There are so many resources available to help you learn to do a new job.” All of these statements have their truth, but the category of skill they each refer to is hard skills: those skills that can be taught by a machine or using a specific metric for success. These hard skills are not skills that are more difficult, they are the skills that have a “hard” way of measuring success or an unchanging way they are accomplished by a human or a machine. These are the things we most often understand as what is measured in a classroom and graded through assignments or standardized tests.

Soft skills are another matter entirely. These skills tend to be more situational, and they require a different way of approaching a problem. Soft skills are things like workplace communication, time management, teamwork, and adaptability. You can’t test soft skills with a Scantron and a #2 pencil. And soft skills are the most lacking of the two categories according to faculty members and hiring managers. Nearly 75% of all companies say soft skills are extremely important while bemoaning how difficult it is to find a recent graduate who excels in–or even has any–soft skills.

This week Ryan, Garreth, and Cody sit down to talk about positivity and not in some kind of empower-yourself-out-of-reality kind of way. Positivity has been proven by scientists to lengthen your life, shorten sicknesses, and help you build a better life experience. While it may be something that we just think is a part of your natural disposition or not, positivity is a helpful studio/gallery/career/personal skill that can be learned, practiced, and sometimes even faked until we see how true and necessary it is.

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