Article by Arteria
Soft skills, in other words – interpersonal skills are non-technical, refer to how you work. It includes the way you interact with your colleagues, clients or staff. In comparison to hard skills (that can be measured by your proficiency in a foreign language, the degrees you earned or computer pro-grammes you know), soft skills are hard to measure.
Regardless of that, it doesn’t make them less important. Quite the opposite – nowadays the soft skills are highly appreciated. The recruiters recognise the soft skills as additional information about the employee-to-be. In a workplace, competencies such as good time management, teamwork, leader-ship, functioning well under pressure, experience dealing with difficult clients etc are as handy as the hard skills you were taught in school.
For some of us – those skills come naturally, for others – they have to be trained. In those scenarios, it is helpful to come out of one comfort zone and reach for help in places that offer special „soft skills training”.
As an example, theatre classes are believed to help with developing soft skills. „The theatre experi-ence transform fear of public speaking into creative stage fright. Practising theatre is not only helpful speech-wise and self-presentation (controlling breathing, harnessing body language or proper dic-tion), but most importantly developing our organisational and logistic competences. It takes a great piece of teamwork, time management, persistence, communication skills and leadership to create a theatrical performance. Encountering with art brings people together and creates a safe environment for artistic improvisations, meanwhile, the need for memorising the lines develops concentration and memory.”*
We can use the SGH Warsaw School of Economics as a good example of implementing theatrical practice as a soft skill development method. Students, while engaging in the Main Scene of Econom-ics Theatre (Teatr Scena Główna Handlowa), can learn helpful methods, which can be used in their day-to-day lives.
Another illustration of acquiring soft skills through artistic/theatrical practice is an initiative taken by the International Cultural Centre Nowy Teatr. Soft skill training through movement is an „Innovative 16-hour online workshop for teachers developing soft skills through somatics and conscious work with the body.”**
The project is implemented by the Burdąg Foundation, M-O-S-S and is co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme.