Highlighting your soft skills is equally important as highlighting your technical abilities in your resume. Soft skills, like communication, teamwork, and problem-solving, can set you apart and show employers you’re the well-rounded candidate they’re looking for.

Also often referred to as “people skills” or “interpersonal skills,” they play a crucial role in your professional success. They influence how you work and interact with others, solve problems, and adapt to new situations. It’s easy to list hard skills like coding or financial analysis, but soft skills require a more nuanced approach to demonstrate effectively on your resume.

Identify Your Key Soft Skills

Start by identifying the soft skills most relevant to the job you’re applying for. Review the job description and note any soft skills mentioned, such as leadership, teamwork, or time management. Reflect on your strengths and experiences to select the soft skills that best represent you and align with the role.

Use Specific Examples

To highlight your soft skills, share real experiences that show how you’ve used them. Instead of just saying you’re a good communicator, tell about a time when your strong communication skills made a difference or significantly impacted. For instance, mention a project where your clear and persuasive communication led to team alignment and project success.

Incorporate Soft Skills into Your Experience Section

Integrate your soft skills into the experience section of your resume by weaving them into your descriptions of past roles. Consider how you used soft skills for each position to contribute to your team, overcome challenges, or achieve goals. Use action verbs to bring these stories to life, such as “collaborated,” “facilitated,” “negotiated,” or “resolved.”

Highlight Soft Skills in Your Summary or Objective

Your resume’s summary or objective is a great place to highlight key soft skills. This section should provide a snapshot of your professional identity, including your technical qualifications and soft skill strengths. Craft a compelling statement that communicates your ability to bring value through hard and soft skills.

Quantify the Impact of Your Soft Skills

When possible, quantify your soft skills’ impact with specific metrics or achievements. For example, you might mention how your leadership and motivational skills increased your team’s productivity by a certain percentage or how your conflict resolution skills led to a decrease in team disputes.

Showcasing your soft skills on your resume requires thoughtfulness and specificity. You can paint a complete picture of yourself as a dynamic and versatile candidate by identifying the right soft skills, providing concrete examples, and weaving these qualities throughout your resume.

In the eyes of potential employers, your soft skills can be just as critical as your technical abilities. So take the time to showcase them effectively, and you’ll be closer to landing your dream job.

Need help revamping your resume to highlight soft skills or to, overall,land a job? Email rick@continentalsearch.com or connect with him on LinkedIn at Rick Pascual.

About the Author

Rick Pascual is the Practice Director for ruminant health and nutrition at Continental Search, a leading recruiting team in the animal sciences. He is a NAPS Certified Personnel Consultant and leads all the research and recruiting for dairy and beef. Rick mostly recruits sales, technical and management professionals for feed manufacturers, feed additive suppliers, and animal pharma.  

For the latest job opportunities, you may connect with Rick on LinkedIn or email him at rick@continentalsearch.com.