Top Soft Skills [90+ Examples for Your Resume]


Soft skills represent fundamental abilities highly valued in all occupations.

Whether you work as a waiter in a restaurant or hold a prominent position as a CEO, your proficiency in soft skills will play a pivotal role in determining your success, alongside your technical expertise.

Attributes such as motivation and time management, leadership, and open-mindedness are universally sought-after soft skills, among many others.

These examples are just a glimpse of the wide array of soft skills sought in the professional world.

If you’re wondering which soft skills are pertinent to your specific career path and which ones warrant your attention for development, this article will provide the answers you seek.

Continue reading to explore the following topics:

  • Understanding Soft Skills
  • Soft Skills vs. Hard Skills
  • Top 10 Soft Skills Admired by Employers Across All Professions
  • Over 90 Examples of Soft Skills Relevant to 10 Different Careers
  • Strategies for Incorporating Soft Skills into Your Resume

What Are Soft Skills?

Soft skills encompass a blend of interpersonal, social, and communicative abilities, personal qualities, outlooks, and emotional attributes, among other attributes, which hold value across all professions.

Some instances of soft skills comprise:

  1. Communication
  2. Collaboration
  3. Leadership
  4. Problem-solving

When seeking employment, soft skills play a critical role in distinguishing exceptional candidates from merely satisfactory ones, particularly when recruiters need to make choices between candidates with similar work and educational backgrounds.

This assertion is supported by research, with 97% of employers asserting that soft skills are either equally important or even more crucial than hard skills. Furthermore, over half of new hires who do not succeed within the initial 18 months often falter due to a deficiency in soft skills.

Soft Skills Vs Hard Skills 

Skills are typically categorized into two main types: hard skills and soft skills.

Hard skills, often referred to as quantifiable or measurable abilities, encompass a wide range of competencies, ranging from technical skills like Photoshop proficiency to specialized knowledge such as expertise in emergency care procedures. Hard skills are typically acquired through formal education, specialized training programs, certifications, and hands-on experience gained in a professional setting.

On the other hand, soft skills, also known as interpersonal or people skills, represent a combination of social and relational abilities, personal characteristics, and professional attitudes that are universally essential in virtually all occupations. Examples of soft skills include teamwork, patience, effective time management, and proficient communication. Soft skills can either be intrinsic personality traits or qualities acquired and honed through life experiences and personal growth.

However, it’s important to note that while both hard and soft skills are typically listed on a resume to showcase one’s capabilities and qualifications, the full extent of an individual’s skills and their suitability for a particular role is often best assessed by recruiters and employers through interviews and interactions during the hiring process. These interactions provide a comprehensive understanding of an applicant’s skill set and how well they align with the requirements of the job.

Top 10 Soft Skills Employers Love (For Any Profession)

Soft skills offer valuable insights into how a candidate is likely to function in a workplace, handle stressful situations, and demonstrate their professional potential. Consequently, many employers give precedence to hiring individuals with the appropriate soft skills, sometimes prioritizing them over hard skills.

In the year 2023, the most sought-after soft skills are as follows:

  1. Time Management: The ability to efficiently manage one’s time, prioritize tasks, and meet deadlines is highly prized by employers in today’s fast-paced work environments.
  2. Communication: Effective communication skills, encompassing both listening and expressing oneself clearly, are fundamental for collaboration, problem-solving, and maintaining a positive workplace atmosphere.
  3. Adaptability: Given the ever-evolving nature of industries and technology, adaptability is crucial. Employees who can swiftly adjust to new situations and learn new skills are highly valued.
  4. Problem-Solving: The capacity to identify, analyze, and resolve challenges is a vital skill in any role. Problem solvers are often considered invaluable assets to a team or organization.
  5. Teamwork: Collaboration and the ability to work harmoniously with others towards common goals are essential soft skills for effective team dynamics and project success.
  6. Creativity: Creative thinking fosters innovation and novel solutions to problems, making it a highly sought-after skill, particularly in industries where innovation is key.
  7. Leadership: Even for non-management roles, leadership skills are valuable as they can manifest in taking initiative, motivating others, and contributing to a positive work environment.
  8. Interpersonal Skills: The capacity to build and maintain relationships, resolve conflicts, and work effectively with colleagues, clients, and superiors is vital in most professions.
  9. Work Ethic: Demonstrating dedication, responsibility, and a strong work ethic contributes to one’s reputation as a reliable and committed team member.
  10. Attention to Detail: Precision and thoroughness in tasks are highly valued, especially in roles where accuracy is critical, such as quality control or data analysis.

These soft skills are considered particularly important in 2023, reflecting the evolving demands of the job market and the need for well-rounded professionals who can thrive in diverse workplace environments.

1. Time Management

  • Stress management
  • Organization
  • Prioritizing
  • Planning
  • Goal setting

2. Communication

  • Verbal communication
  • Written communication
  • Presentation
  • Constructive feedback
  • Active listening

3. Adaptability

  • Self-management
  • Optimism
  • Calmness
  • Analysis
  • Self-motivation

4. Problem-solving

  • Analysis
  • Logical reasoning
  • Observation
  • Brainstorming
  • Decision making

5. Teamwork

  • Conflict management and resolution
  • Collaboration
  • Coordination
  • Idea exchange
  • Mediation

6. Creativity

  • Imagination
  • Mind-mapping
  • Innovation
  • Experimentation
  • Questioning

7. Leadership

  • Management skills
  • Authenticity
  • Mentorship
  • Generosity
  • Cultural intelligence

8. Interpersonal Skills

  • Empathy
  • Humor
  • Networking
  • Tolerance
  • Diplomacy

9. Work Ethic

  • Responsibility
  • Discipline
  • Dependability
  • Commitment
  • Professionalism

10. Attention to Detail

Attention to Detail

  • Scheduling
  • Introspection
  • Acuity
  • Questioning
  • Critical observation

90+ Soft Skills Examples for 10 Careers

If you’re unsure which soft skills to emphasize for your specific profession, you can explore the list below, which includes over 90 soft skills tailored to 10 different career paths. Simply identify the skills that align with your profession and incorporate them into your resume as needed:

Customer Service

Customer service is all about soft skills, especially since it involves dealing with people. Be it in person, over the phone, or on the internet, your ‘people skills’ need to be on point if you are to work with demanding customers. These skills include effective communication, active listening, and conflict resolution, among others.

Customer Service Soft Skills:

  • Communication
  • Listening skills
  • Self-control
  • Positive attitude
  • Assertiveness
  • Conflict resolution
  • Empathy
  • Depersonalization
  • Taking responsibility
  • Positivity

2. Healthcare

A career in healthcare takes years of studying, a lot of training, and a variety of hard skills. At the same time, healthcare workers also need to be able to work well under pressure or pay close attention to detail. Soft skills like empathy, teamwork, and stress management are crucial in providing quality patient care.

Healthcare Soft Skills:

  • Work ethic
  • Stress management
  • Teamwork
  • Positive attitude
  • Flexibility
  • Time management
  • Confidence
  • Receptive attitude
  • Empathy
  • Attention to detail

3. Digital Marketing

Digital marketing has gained prominence in today’s technology-driven world, and it requires a unique set of soft skills alongside technical knowledge. Professionals in this field need to be curious, adaptable, and creative, with a strong work ethic and an ability to accept criticism and learn from it.

Digital Marketing Soft Skills:

  • Curiosity
  • Tenacity
  • Willingness to learn
  • Adaptability
  • Multitasking
  • Teamwork
  • Creativity
  • Work ethic
  • Honesty
  • Accepting criticism

4. Management

Management roles require a combination of hard and soft skills. A successful manager not only coordinates human resources but also exhibits emotional intelligence, effective planning, and strong leadership qualities. These soft skills are essential for managing teams and achieving organizational goals.

Management Soft Skills:

  • Emotional intelligence
  • Stress management
  • Motivation
  • Task delegation
  • Negotiation
  • Planning
  • Problem-solving
  • Innovation
  • Charisma
  • Leadership

5. Education

In the field of education, staying updated with new teaching methods is crucial. Educators need not only hard skills but also soft skills like effective communication, patience, and conflict resolution to create a positive learning environment and engage with students effectively.

Education Soft Skills:

  • Written and oral communication
  • Public speaking
  • Stress management
  • Patience
  • Critical thinking
  • Enthusiasm
  • Motivation
  • Work ethic
  • Conflict resolution
  • Assertiveness

6. Sales

Success in sales hinges on possessing strong soft skills. Whether you’re conducting sales over the phone, in person, or through online platforms, a range of soft skills is crucial for sales professionals. Let’s explore ten essential soft skills required for a successful career in sales:

Sales Soft Skills

  1. Effective Public Speaking
  2. Proficient Negotiation
  3. Persuasive Communication
  4. Sociable Demeanor
  5. Empathetic Understanding
  6. Collaborative Teamwork
  7. Efficient Time Management
  8. Critical Thinking Abilities
  9. Problem-Solving Skills

7. Design

Being a successful designer entails more than creating visually appealing designs behind a computer screen. Besides nurturing creativity, paying attention to detail is crucial. Designers need various soft skills that allow them to actively listen to clients and remain open to feedback to bring their vision to life. Here are the key soft skills for designers:

Design Soft Skills

  1. Effective Visual Communication
  2. Proficient Verbal Communication
  3. Creative Thinking and Innovation
  4. Attention to Detail
  5. Active Listening Skills
  6. Patience in Handling Design Revisions
  7. Aesthetic Sensitivity
  8. Effective Time Management
  9. Motivation and Dedication
  10. Willingness to Accept Constructive Criticism

8. Accounting

While the term “accounting” might not immediately conjure thoughts of soft skills, a successful career in accounting demands a specific set of these skills. Here’s a summary of the soft skills required for accountants:

Accounting Soft Skills

  1. Clear and Concise Written and Oral Communication
  2. Exceptional Organizational Abilities
  3. Meticulous Attention to Detail
  4. Effective Problem-Solving Skills
  5. Efficient Time Management
  6. Systematic Analytical Skills
  7. Ability to Arrive at Conclusions
  8. Critical Thinking Skills
  9. Active Learning and Adaptability
  10. High Degree of Accuracy

9. Business Analytics

Business analysts are tasked with balancing business knowledge with advancing technologies in today’s digital world. To excel in this field, business analysts need to possess the following essential soft skills:

Business Analytics Soft Skills

  1. Strong Negotiation Skills
  2. Active and Attentive Listening
  3. Effective Conflict Resolution Abilities
  4. Providing Quality Client Service
  5. Sound Decision-Making Skills
  6. Proficient Problem-Solving Capabilities
  7. Strategic Thinking Skills
  8. Technical Writing Proficiency
  9. Team Building and Collaboration
  10. Effective Presentation and Public Speaking Skills

10. Web Development

Web development requires more than just coding proficiency in languages like C++ or Java. Successful web developers need various soft skills, including creativity, problem-solving, and active listening. Collaboration with designers and clients often necessitates using these skills. Here are the primary soft skills for web developers:

Web Development Soft Skills

  1. Professional Active Listening Skills
  2. Demonstrating Patience in Client Interactions
  3. Openness to New Ideas and Approaches
  4. Adaptability to Evolving Project Requirements
  5. Effective Problem-Solving Abilities
  6. Strong Critical Thinking Skills
  7. Creative Thinking and Innovation
  8. Taking Responsibility for Project Deliverables
  9. Confidence in Handling Complex Tasks
  10. Efficient Time and Project Management Skills

How to List Soft Skills On Your Resume

How you present your skills on your resume is significant. It’s essential to ensure that you’re enumerating the appropriate soft skills, and they align with the job you’re seeking. Furthermore, substantiating these soft skills with relevant experiences is crucial. A mere assertion of being an excellent leader, for instance, won’t suffice if your resume lacks evidence. To give you an advantage over other candidates, here are our top four recommendations for showcasing your soft skills effectively on your resume.

1. Customize Soft Skills to Match the Job

The more specific and job-tailored your soft skills are on your resume, the better your chances. This means including only those skills that directly relate to the position you’re pursuing. For instance, if you’re seeking a server position, skills like problem-solving and critical thinking might not be as relevant as effective communication and teamwork. You can easily tailor your soft skills to the job by using the job description as your guide. Read the job advertisement thoroughly, identify the required skills, and then incorporate them into your resume.

Let’s say you’re applying for a sales manager role, and the job requirements include:

  1. A bachelor’s degree in Business, Marketing, Communications, or a related field.
  2. 5 years of sales experience.
  3. Strong oral and written communication skills.
  4. Proven ability to lead a team to meet sales quotas.
  5. Excellent leadership skills.
  6. Experience in setting sales goals.

By simply reading these requirements, you can identify four skills directly tailored to the job:

  • Oral and written communication skills
  • Leadership
  • Goal-oriented
  • Teamwork

2. Substantiate Soft Skills Through Other Resume Sections

Anyone can claim they possess exceptional critical thinking and leadership skills on their resume. However, to be taken seriously, you need to support these claims with concrete experiences and facts. While it may not be as straightforward as customizing skills, there are effective approaches to achieve this.

For example, let’s say you’re applying for a creative director position at an advertising agency, and required soft skills include:

  • Creativity
  • Leadership
  • Oral communication
  • Project management

Here’s how you can substantiate these skills:

First, include these skills in your dedicated skills section.

Next, reinforce them through your work experiences by highlighting achievements or responsibilities that showcase these soft skills.

To demonstrate your project management skills, you could write:

Example: “Coordinated a team of 10 individuals to produce a YouTube video ad for a client, resulting in a revenue increase of over $50,000 within a month.”

To exhibit your creativity, consider incorporating something like this:

Example: “Conceptualized and pitched an advertising idea that subsequently won the Epica Award.”

3. Leverage Transferable Skills for Career Transitions

Transferable skills are particularly valuable when you’re transitioning to a new career or changing roles within the same industry. These skills are not job-specific but remain applicable across various positions.

For instance, imagine you’re leaving your role as a news reporter to pursue a career in Public Relations. While these fields differ, they share a foundation in communication-related professions.

You can highlight relevant soft skills acquired as a news reporter on your new resume to demonstrate your adaptability to the new role. Soft skills from your journalism background may encompass:

  • Communication skills
  • Presentation skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Creativity

These skills are transferable to your PR resume, showcasing your ability to navigate the transition effectively.

Soft Skills FAQ

  1. Why are soft skills crucial for career advancement?

Soft skills encompass interpersonal and social abilities as well as career-related attributes that dictate your workplace interactions, handling of responsibilities, and pursuit of personal growth. They are indispensable for career advancement across all industries, as employers frequently prioritize candidates with the right soft skills over those with only hard skills.

  1. How do soft skills differ from hard skills?

    Hard skills are quantifiable competencies acquired through education, training, certifications, and professional experience. Soft skills, in contrast, may include personality traits and are developed through life experiences. A well-rounded professional typically possesses a blend of both hard and soft skills.

    1. What are the top 10 soft skills valued by recruiters?

    Recruiters highly value the following top 10 soft skills regardless of the profession:

    1. Time management
    2. Communication
    3. Adaptability
    4. Problem-solving
    5. Teamwork skills
    6. Creativity
    7. Leadership
    8. Interpersonal skills
    9. Work ethic
    10. Attention to detail
    1. Is it possible to acquire soft skills?

    Soft skills, which encompass non-technical attributes like social and interpersonal skills, are not something that can be mastered in a short time. However, it is feasible to develop new soft skills through dedicated personal development efforts.

    1. Can soft skills be included on a resume?

    Absolutely! Soft skills should be listed in the “Skills” section of your resume. To provide a clearer picture of your proficiency, consider adding skill levels (e.g., beginner, intermediate) alongside each skill. This helps recruiters gauge your competence in each area.

    Key Takeaways 

    Certainly, here’s a concise recap of the main points from the article:

    • Soft skills encompass a wide range of attributes, including people skills, social abilities, communication skills, character traits, attitudes, and mindsets. These skills are highly sought after in all professions.
    • Skills can be categorized into two main types: soft skills and hard skills. While hard skills are typically demonstrated through qualifications and experience, soft skills are often evaluated during interviews and should also be included on your resume.
    • Although certain soft skills hold value across all professions, each industry may prioritize specific soft skills. When applying for a job, it’s essential to tailor your list of soft skills to match the specific requirements of the position you’re seeking.

    If you have any more questions or need further clarification on any topic, please feel free to ask!