Favorite Resources - Soft Skills Installment
When I talk to current or recent bootcamp students, I'm often asked about how to break into the consulting field as a developer. Technical skills are certainly important, and you need a baseline of knowledge in order to speak intelligently with your peers and customers. However, soft skills are critical in landing a job, developing relationships, and navigating difficult situations on the job.
Some of my favorite resources for developing soft skills include:
The 2-Hour Job Search by Steve Dalton
People hire people they like and want to work with 8 hours a day. This book is an excellent resource in learning how to get out of the job application resume blackhole and to dive into conducting "informational interviews" with people at your target companies. Along the way, you'll pick up a bunch of interpersonal skills, and maybe even a few lasting relationships.
Insight by Tasha Eurich
Ever meet someone whose impression of himself is wildly off from the way people actually perceive him? We all have that coworker or friend-of-a-friend. This book describes the secret to soft skills success, which is learning to process feedback and become more self-aware.
Nothing replaces having strong relationships in the tech community. Don't wait for your company to assign an official mentor - reach out to people you trust, and go out on a limb to contact people with whom you'd like to have a relationship. They'll be able to give you the most relevant feedback and a distanced perspective.
In job seach mode, my husband and I interviewed one another frequently to practice both technical and soft skills. Communication, listening, negotiation... they're all practiceable, repeatable skills with enough time. It may seem like magic, but it's not.
Next up on the blog? My favorite resources for the job search and for developing technical skills right out of a bootcamp or undergrad.