I have a confeshave a confession to make: I am a generalist and everything I am really good at is considered a "soft skill".
Not a single hard skill in sight, in my life or in my bio.
That's a big reason why I am so opposed to the term "soft skills" itself.
Quite honestly, I am sick and tired of statements that imply that my skills are less important or less valuable than "hard skills" – technical knowledge or maybe a law or finance degree.
I'm equally sick and tired of well-meaning people who try to reinterpret what I do into something other than a generalist skill set to make me feel better at my lack of "true education".
I remember when my husband and I met again, many years after dating for the first time back in the past millennium, and he paid me the "compliment" of how amazing it was that I managed to build a company without any hard skills. His surprise was palpable. Needless to say, he won't live that one down for another few decades (along with describing my admittedly very quaint German hometown as looking "just like Disneyworld"). 🙄 🙃
I am, and most likely will remain, a generalist and I love it.
Anything that requires communications is my cup of mate tea, and I code-switch like nobody's business.
(I realize that with my background there's a lot of euro-privilege at play that many other groups of equally or more proficient code-switchers do not have.)
I am amazing at strategic thinking, problem solving, ideating, networking, motivating, and a lot of other things. I read a lot, all across the board, and have a wide breadth of knowledge.
Admittedly without the depth experts have (potentially with the exception of feminist reinterpretations of mythological female characters, of which I know A LOT).
My brain needs tons of stimulation.
I imagine I am almost as bad at being bored as I would be at developing a new type of rocket fuel.
And that's okay.
Oh, and if your argument for keeping the term "soft" is that these skills are not measurable, let me tell you that's sooo 1990s. The majority can be quite quantifiable, and I bet there'll be a lot more progress in the next few years.And let's hope that maybe, maybe that'll finally put an end to having to justify or defend generalist careers. *rant over*
Fellow generalists and you lovely specialists out there, what's your take on this matter?
And which term do you prefer (if any) over "soft skills"?