Tip #530: “Soft” Skills?

“Every person is responsible for all the good within the scope of his abilities, and for no more, and none can tell whose sphere is the largest.” Gail Hamilton

It is very easy to get disheartened. It may seem that what we teach as “soft” skills trainers is trivial in the face of all of the horror and hardship throughout the world. We don’t help our participants learn how to physically save lives or cure cancer or feed the hungry. Our training programs don’t stop wars or free the enslaved.

However, perhaps those “soft” skills have hidden edges that are keen enough to cut a path toward those ultimate goals.

Stress management and counseling skills can help to save lives.

Analytic thinking and grant writing skills can contribute to a cure for cancer.

Problem solving and persuasive communication skills can help to feed the hungry.

Management and negotiation skills are essential for stopping wars.

Ethics and assertiveness skills can help to free the enslaved.

No, we don’t save the world each time that we facilitate a “soft” skills training program. But the skills we teach can prepare one or more of our participants to have a positive and potentially significant impact.

There is a lovely story about a child who picks up stranded starfish one at a time and throws them back into the sea. When confronted with the fact that he can’t save all of them, he responds that he makes a difference to each one that he saves.

We do make a difference, one person at a time.

May your learning be sweet.


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