Whether you're looking to embark on a new career in IT or take your current IT career to the next level, your "soft skills" can be just as important to your success as your technical knowledge. Of course coding competency and understanding specific systems is fundamental. However, working well across teams and departments, being adaptable to change, and making sound analytical decisions will be the factors that help you stand out from the crowd.
The challenge with soft skills is that we often have trouble seeing which areas are the most natural for us and which will likely require additional effort for us to truly excel. To help us understand our own natural core competencies, Capella University is offering our readers the opportunity to take CEB's IT Talent Assessment for the Twelve Competencies of a World-Class IT Professional. You'll get a customized report based on your responses to the questions on your natural strengths and suggestions for development.
I took the assessment and found the analysis helpful. It highlighted which behaviors I have a greater natural tendency to display, such as Learning Agility and Decision Making. That perhaps shouldn't be surprising, given my career direction of launching new products and businesses, but it helps confirm that I've made the right choices for me. Other areas, such as Process Orientation, are less of a natural strength for me, so as I delve into more detailed project management I know I need to spend extra effort on these tasks. As a manager and business owner, I can find people who excel in these competencies to support me in those areas.
Learning Agility, Decision Making, and Process Orientation are just three of the 12 competencies the assessment analyzed. The infographic below will tell you more about each of the 12 areas you will be measured on and why they're critical for anyone building a career in IT:
Give it a shot for yourself! Take the CEB IT Talent Assessment provided by Capella and see how it can help you move your career forward. And when you get your results, let us know in the comments whether there were any big surprises in your assessment.