It is well known that to succeed in cybersecurity, you need to master certain hard or technological skills, like understanding different operating systems or knowing how to code using Python. But, to achieve better outcomes, you need to be able to identify and develop different human or soft skills.
You are not a robot working in a solo environment. You are human, working and engaging with others to achieve a common goal: keeping your organization out of the reach of hackers.
What Are Soft Skills?
The first thing we need to know is what exactly are soft skills. They are non-technical abilities that relate to how you work. They are not specific to any job and include everything from how you communicate with others, your attention to detail, your work ethics, how you solve problems, and more.
Although they are intangible assets, they are desirable in any career. That is why it is essential that you identify which soft skills you excel at, add them to your resume, explain how they have helped you in different circumstances, and be sure to tell the story when you are getting interviewed for a job. Soft skills are one of the assets that will make you stand out in the eyes of a recruiter.
Think of it this way: would you rather have a co-worker who performed well in his job but would heat every meeting or have one that performed and the first one but can go through complicated meetings with a peaceful approach and try to reach the best possible outcome.
There is a wide variety of options in soft skills, but not all of them are necessary for certain jobs. Here is a list of the most common ones that recruiters look for. We used bold letters for the ones that will be the most helpful for those of you looking to succeed in cybersecurity.
- Problem solving skills
- Communication skills
- Work ethic
- Attention to details
- Time management
- Active learning
- Conflict resolution
Tips to Help You Identify Your Soft Skills and succeed in cybersecurity
Self-awareness is key in this process. It will allow you to understand what are your strengths and opportunities. But to ease this work, at CyberWarrior, we strongly suggest you ask friends, teammates, and even your employer about the soft skills that first come to mind when they hear your name.
Going through this process can help you come up with a list of skills. Once you have it, take some time to do the exercise of adding an example of how each skill has helped you in the past. Not only will this help you have a story to tell recruiters, but it will give you a better sense of where you still have some work to do.
For example, if communications skills are not something that came up in the conversations you had, then you will need to spend some time improving your body language and facial expressions, focusing on learning how to listen and how to express yourself better.
If attention to detail is something you are lacking, you can start working on creating a work plan, making lists, and maintaining a schedule. You should also limit your distractions.
And if problem-solving is not your strongest skill, then you should start working in a process that allows you to define, evaluate, and implement the best solution.
Adding many soft skills to your resume is not the best approach to getting your dream job. You need first to understand what soft skills are needed to perform better in that role or which ones the recruiter is looking for. Then you need to understand which ones you actually have, and then you can add them to your profile. It’s a great idea to include them in the description of your work history and/or in your cover letter.
To better understand what skills the recruiter is looking for, you must carefully read the job description. There you will find different hints such as “strong written and verbal communication,” or “must have strong work ethics,” and even “ability to solve complex problems.”