Soft Skills, Solid Results

Parenting seems unrelated to business, but in my experience, it is very much related to people skills – and people skills are necessary for business.
There are four key people skills, often called “soft skills,” that I want to talk to you about:

  • Gratitude
  • Listening
  • Grace By Margin
  • Vision

How do you feel when you get a thank-you note?
People never forget when they get a handwritten thank-you note. A text or e-mail is nice, but they last a day.
People love to feel gratitude.
They love to share it and to receive it.
Thank-you notes remove barriers, so make it a habit.


Listen longer and listen better.
When you’re speaking with someone, encourage long pauses. Let the silence do the heavy lifting.
You don’t have to rush into an answer or response before thinking about what a person is saying.
This is helpful in sales and with direct reports.
Allow yourself to stay quiet so the other person can do the talking.
Don’t be afraid to ask open-ended questions like “How did that go for you?”

Grace By Margin

This is all about things that save you time.
Consider using the “while” system as a way to multitask.
For example, place an under-the-desk bike to work out while you work at your desk.
Another thing to consider: timed e-mails.
Schedule an e-mail to be sent out at a specific time and add links in e-mails to schedule time on your calendar.
One more time-saving tool is speech-to-text transcription. This ensures you have a record of every conversation that you can reference as needed.


Break down your vision into small parts.
Instead of feeling overwhelmed by something large, choose one smaller goal for the month.
Do this with everyone in your organization.
Break down everyone’s goals into smaller parts. This makes it easier to track over the course of a quarter or year.
Even go as far as creating a vision board. Add images of what you want to achieve. Make your vision visual.
Lastly, write down your achievements as part of your vision. Where are you now and where do you want to be over the next three years?

P.S. Don’t forget to check out the “Soft Skills, Solid Skills” Petra Coach webinar at PetraCoach.com/soft-skills-solid-results-with-bea-wray.


Bea Wray is an entrepreneur, innovator, mentor and author of What An MBA Taught Me…: But My Kids Made Me Learn. She founded (and sold) SourceHarbor Inc. and has consulted with over 300 companies around the globe. She’s the former chair of ForbesBooks and has hosted The Front Porch podcast, Savannah’s: Engage SGTV, TEDx and the GeekEnd Innovation conference. With years of experience and an MBA With Distinction from Harvard Business School, she’s always on the lookout for the next opportunity. 
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