Get ahead in the new year

30 || November || 2022

View in Browser

Brought to you by

#Issue 014

Five critical
soft skills for 2023

Share this newsletter

Hi 👋🏾

Before we get into today’s edition, I have something to share with you. Entering Tech #014 will be our last edition for the year. I know, we’re all very sad in the newsroom as well *sob* *sob* 

It’s our last edition as Entering Tech’s writer—Timi Odueso—will be OOO for a few weeks and we’ll be using the break to revamp and review the work we’ve done with this newsletter since it launched. Thank you for sticking with us; we’ll be back in January with more helpful tips and resources.

Soft skills again? Yes, again. 

Soft skills are as important as hard skills and technical capabilities. A brilliant designer who doesn’t know how to collaborate with their team members can only go so far within an organization. A social media manager who isn’t malleable or quick to adapt to changes will slow their team down and fall behind on their tasks. 

Soft skills help you navigate your career path and make you a valuable team player in any business. Think about some of the things that come naturally to you: are you great at organizing files and documents? Do you enjoy managing people and business operations? Are you resourceful and quick on your feet? These seemingly simple skills are much-needed in young and growing startups. 

Today’s edition features a new list of soft skills as recommended by Emmanuel Madzunye, a senior software development lecturer at redAcademy.

Happy reading 🙂


by Koromone Koroye & Timi Odueso

Tech trivia questions

For today’s trivia, we’ll focus on people who have said insightful things about soft skills. Answers are at the bottom of this newsletter. 

  1. Which evolutionary scientist said, “It is not the strongest or most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change”? Hint: Their name means “Freeman”.
  2. Which Facebook executive said, “Build your skills, not your resume”? Hint: Their initials are “S.S”.

A review of soft skills

We’ve written about soft skills before, and why they’re important. They are transferable personal skills like communication and teamwork that help you excel at work. 

In this edition of #EnteringTech🚀, we spoke to five HR professionals who shared what kind of soft skills are important if you want to succeed in the tech space.

Image source: TechCabal/Timi Odueso

As we go into 2023, there are soft skills more techies have to learn if they want to succeed. Tech companies are tightening their hiring budgets next year and if you want to get into tech, you need to be as prepared as possible.

Five soft skills for 2023

📈 Adaptability: Newbies in tech must be comfortable with change. People who started their careers in technology 20 or 30 years ago are definitely doing things vastly differently from how they were taught. That’s the nature of technology and failing to adapt will make you redundant.

This requires open-mindedness and resilience, a keyword we will see echoed across the top skills in 2023.


📝 Continuous learning: The ability to research, analyse, and implement is crucial. Intending techies should prioritise research and problem-solving in 2023. 

Evolution in technology is lightning fast. Programmes and platforms being developed today are leaps and bounds ahead of legacy systems less than ten years old. Just look at how much phones have evolved in the past ten years.

But it’s not just technology that changes; clients and workplaces change. 

2023 will demand that all techies are comfortable with ongoing research and continuous learning as this will give them the tools to build the resilience they need to adapt and adjust to inevitable change.


🧠 Critical thinking: In 2023, those who want to grow and succeed must be able to think critically.

This involves looking at existing data and making wise decisions. The steps to critical thinking are: identifying the problem, gathering data, analysing and evaluating, identifying assumptions, establishing significance, making a decision, and communicating.

Good critical thinkers also ask simple questions, challenge common assumptions, are aware of their biases, and read more.


⌚️Time management: Please, there’s no “African time” in tech. To succeed, you always have to be on time with most things like deadlines and meetings.

Time management is critical for the team, but also for you. Developing time management skills and knowing how to balance your time will help you get better at executing tasks at work.

If you don’t plan and spend your time well, your co-workers might get the impression that you are falling behind on your work 🙁 or it’ll give your colleagues the impression that you’re not serious.

If you can’t meet a deadline or a meeting, communicate the changes to people and let them know.


😇 Ethical awareness: No one wants to work with someone who’s willing to burn everything and anyone for success. This is where ethical awareness comes into play.

It’s all about making the right decisions when faced with a dilemma. When you discover a mistake you made that could cost the business money, do you own up to it quickly and provide solutions or try to cover it up?

As a soft skill, ethical awareness is about making good decisions—and it’s not always easy. It is based on the standards of every workplace and making decisions that comply with those standards.

Learn soft skills online

While soft skills certifications aren’t big in the tech scene, there are courses you can take online that will help improve you. 

Interpersonal skills—Advanced soft skills by Alison
  • Price: Free
  • Duration: 5 Hours
  • Tools Needed: Phone + internet
  • Level: Beginner
Get Course
Improve your soft skills by The Open University (Google Digital Garage)
  • Price: Free
  • Duration: 24 hours
  • Tools Needed: Phone + laptop
  • Level: Beginner
Get Course
Empathy and emotional intelligence at work by BerkelyX (edX)
  • Price: Free
  • Duration: 4 weeks
  • Tools Needed: Internet + phone
  • Level: Beginner
Get Course
The Psychology of Emotions by University of Cambridge (edX)
  • Price: Free
  • Duration: 5 weeks
  • Tools Needed: Internet + phone
  • Level: Beginner
Get Course
Teamworking skills: Communicating effectively in groups by University of Colorado (Coursera)
  • Price: Free
  • Duration: 11 hours
  • Tools Needed: Internet + phone
  • Level: Beginner
Get Course

Ask a techie

What should we focus on in 2023? If you have topics and concepts you want to see from Entering Tech in 2023, please fill the form below 👇🏾 or email me at timi@bigcabal.com.

Ask a question

Tech trivia answers

  1. It’s Charles Darwin! He said it while explaining the importance of adaptability in evolution. 

  2. It’s Sheryl Sandberg! She said this in 2012 while addressing that year’s graduates of Harvard Business School.

Opportunities

  • Sign up for HNG Internship 9. HNG Internship is a large-scale, fast-paced virtual internship for people learning code, design, project management and technical sales/marketing. It’s intended for early junior developers/designers who have already completed a training program or have basic knowledge. Apply here.

  • The Julius Berger Scholarship Scheme 2022 is now open to female Nigerian undergraduates who are studying engineering. Selected applicants will get full academic scholarships for the duration of their study in any State or Federal Nigerian university. Apply by December 5.

  • Applications are now open for CyberGirls Fellowship, a free 1-year program that equips girls and women aged 18-28 years old with cybersecurity skills. Apply by December 5.

  • The Goldman Sachs Africa & Caribbean Recruiting Programme is currently receiving applications from students in Africa and the Caribbean who will be graduating in 2023 and 2024. It is an interactive multi-day programme designed to introduce students to the financial world through hands-on experience. Apply by December 7.

  • The Research Scholar Program is currently accepting applications from early-career professors who are pursuing research in fields relevant to Google. It is focused on funding world-class research conducted by early-career professors. Apply by December 1st.

  • Undergraduate and graduate students can apply for the Student Summer Research Fellowship (ETH SSRF) Programme to gain their first research experience in an area of their choice. The fellowship provided by the Computer Science Department of ETH takes place during two summer months and is open to all students worldwide. Apply by December 15th.

  • The VFA Fintech Product Management Bootcamp is now open to applications for its second cohort. Anyone trying to accelerate their career in product or looking to break into product management, specifically within the fintech industry can now apply to be part of the 12-week programme. At the boot camp, participants will learn how to conduct user research, communicate with stakeholders, and use product analysis tools, amongst other things. Apply by December 16.

Jobs

Enjoyed this newsletter?

Spread the word!

Entering Tech

No longer want to receive these emails? Unsubscribe here

Timi Odueso Staff Writer

Get the best African tech newsletters in your inbox