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    Dr. Meenal Sharma, Associate Professor, IIMR

    Management skills can be defined as traits or abilities that an executive should possess in order to complete specific tasks in an organization. Some of the management skills include capacity to perform duties while avoiding crisis situations and promptly solving business problems. Management skills can be developed through learning, solving case studies, developing real life projects and practical experience as a manager. The skills help the manager for the easy flow of activities in the organization.

    The diagram represents the basic management skills required by corporates from management students.

    Now days, there is a shift from imparting mere basic management skills to multi-skills in an integrated manner. In this context, the article would helpschool and college students in improving non-technical skills demanded by industry and making them industry ready from the entry-level worker to the senior-most position.

    Many studies have been done to identify which are the most demanded technical and non-technical skills.

    Richard E. Boyatzis, Elizabeth C. Stubbs, and Scott N. Taylor indicated a major challenge to management education is to develop the ability to use management knowledge.David A. Latif research focuses on the management skills component of managerial effectiveness.Judy D. Olian, Cathy C. Durham, Amy L. Kristoff, Kenneth G. Brown, Richard M. Pierce and Linda Kunder focuses on strategically aligned training and development systems that advance and sustain the organization’s competitive position in its market.

    Learning a soft skills never go out of style and it is the best investment by students in career. Also the rise of AI is only making soft skills increasingly important, as they are the type of skills robots can’t automate.

    As per a study (conducted by 57% of senior leaders) soft skills are more important than hard skills. (LinkedIn Learning’s). However one cannot undermine the importance of Technical skills as well. The following chart represents the most demanded hard skills in 2019 and 2020.


    Source: “The Skills Companies Need Most in 2020 and How to Learn Them” Deanna (Lazzaroni) Pate January 13, 2020.

    Soft skills are the essential interpersonal skills that makes us able to get things done at workplace and take on new opportunities ahead.Now companies are gravitating toward talent with interpersonal and people-oriented skills.

    Creativity, Collaboration, Persuasion, Time Management, Adaptability and Emotional intelligence are few of the most demanded soft skills in the year 2020. It demonstrates how we work with others and bring new ideas and innovative practices to solve business problems.  Recruiters are looking for ‘Emotional intelligence’ in candidates. The data shows that employers value our ability to work well with colleagues.


    • Creativity

    Organizations demand people who can creatively deal with problems and tasks across all business positions, from software engineering to HR. A global study by Adobe found that businesses which invest in creativity experience:

    • Increased employee productivity (78%)
    • Have satisfied customers (80 %) and produce a better customer experience (78%)
    • Foster innovation (83%) and are financially successful (73%)

    Suggestive Readings and courses:

    1. Creativity & Entrepreneurship by Panos Panay
    2. Understanding Creativity and Creative Writing by NeelimaTalwar
    3. Creative Exercises to Spark Original Thinking with Amy Wynne


    • Persuasion

    Persuasion is presenting ideas through reason and logic, in order to influence the audience. Business persons and managers value aspirants who can explain the “why.” To advance your career, brush up on your ability to effectively communicate ideas and persuade your stakeholders that it’s in their best interest to follow your lead.

    Suggestive Readings and courses:

    1. Leading Without Formal Authority with Elizabeth (McLeod) Lotardo and Lisa Earle McLeod
    2. Seth Godin on Presenting to Persuade
    3. Persuasive Coaching with Brian Ahearn


    • Collaboration

    Goals can be accomplished easily by synergy effect. High-functioning teams of different domain experts and skill masters can accomplish more than any individual—and organizations know it. Students learn to collaborate with individuals possess relevant skill and can develop negotiation skill as well while collaborating.

    Suggestive Readings and courses:

    1. Team Work and Collaboration by David Neumann
    2. Teamwork Foundations with Chris Croft
    3. High Performance Collaboration: Leadership, Teamwork, and Negotiation by Leign Thompson


    • Adaptability

    Change is the only constant variable in this world. Students who want to stand out in 2020, embrace that reality and make sure to show up with a positive attitude and open-minded professionalism, especially in stressful situations.

    Suggestive Readings and courses:

    1. Managing Building Adaptation: A Sustainable Approach, Erwin Heurkens
    2. Developing Adaptability as a Manager with Dorie Clark
    3. Finding Your Time Management Style with Dave Crenshaw


    • Emotional Intelligence

    Emotional intelligence is the ability to perceive, evaluate, and respond to your own emotions and the emotions of others. The need for emotional intelligence underscores the importance of effectively responding to and interacting with our colleagues.

    Suggestive Readings and courses:

    1. Emotional Intelligence by Prof. Rabindra Kumar Pradhan, IIT Kharagpur, SWAYAM
    2. Empathy and Emotional Intelligence at Work by UC Berkeley
    3. Developing Your Emotional Intelligence (LinkedIn Learning – Lynda)


    1. Boyatzis, R. E. , Stubbs, E.C. & Taylor, S. N. (2002) . Learning Cognitive andEmotional Intelligence Competencies through Graduate Management Education.Academy of Management Learning and Education (Vol. 1, pp. 150–162 )
    2. Latif, D A. ―Model for Teaching the Management Skills Component ofManagerial Effectiveness to Management Students.‖ Bernard J. Dunn School ofManagement, Shenandoah University, Winchester.
    3. Olian, J.D., Durham,C,C. Kristoff,A.L.,Brown,K,G.,Pierce, R.M., Kunder, Linda.-Designing Management Training and Development for Competitive Advantage: Lessons from the Best. Academic Journal Article, Human Resource Planning.
    4. D. ( 2020). The Skills Companies Need Most in 2020 and How to Learn Them.

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