It was indeed an eye opener of sorts to attend the international conference on soft skills and present a paper.The conference graced by prestigious corporate professionals and academicians proved to be a hotbed for deliberating on lots of issues on soft skills.It was clear from the comments of experts from the USA, UAE and Indian professionals, that soft skills should be imbibed intrinsically into everything be it training on domain subjects, taking soft skills sessions or even any functional or collaborative effort in the industry.The conference was an excellent effort on the part of BITS-Pilani(Languages Effort)where people from various backgrounds could talk about their own perspectives on soft skills.For me it was understanding the present scenario existing in institutes of higher learning as far as soft skills is concerned and the important role my organization can play as a global knowledge transfer,management training and consultancy in value adding the endeavours of all institutes and organizations.I realized that our model of leveraging technology to improve the reach, quality, look and feel and the end result on the part of the trainees can go a long way in value adding as far as instilling soft skills in personality is concerned. The other major benefits I could clearly see is our knowledge transfer expertise would enable in formulating implementable soft skills strategies both for individual as well as institutional learners.
The endless debate on what to consist in soft skills and what to delete, is purely need based which has to be done only after a detailed training need analysis is done, however what I observed rather painfully is that most of the stakeholders involved in imparting soft skills training adopt a one size fits all.This culminates in the trainees understanding the soft skills in a piece meal fashion which in turn is negatively reflected in their professional and personal contact.Moreover, one way of imparting soft skills training has to be relooked every forthnight commensurate with the needs of different sectors as the business environment is highly dynamic and turbulent.Ingraining the same stuffs day in and day year after year does not add any value to the trainees as what is considered contemporary by the trainers, is looked upon as obsolete by the industry, entrepreneurs and job providers. A lot needs to be done especially on industry-institute interface, however kudos to BITS-Pilani to make the first move.
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