Young entrepreneurs must continually build and evolve their skills to meet the demands of new opportunities and challenges. It is increasingly recognised that these skills include not just ‘hard’ business skills and sector specific technical skills but also ‘soft’ skills.
What are soft skills?
‘set of competencies, behaviours, attitudes, personal qualities, motives and thought processes that enable young people to perform well and achieve their goals, work well with others, and effectively navigate their environment’ (YBI,2018, .p.11)
Soft skills are interpersonal skills such as team building, time management, delegation, conflict resolution and stress management. The definition has been expanded over time to include being resilient, curious, taking risks, being adaptable and creative or innovative. Unlike technical knowledge and skills, soft skills often are more a matter of attitude and behaviour.
Soft skills are highly linked to business performance and can benefit young people a lot.
After extensive research, Young Business International (2018), developed a framework outlining the soft skills that young entrepreneurs need to succeed both now and in the future. Four main categories of skills have been identified and are as follows: