Soft Skills to Look for When Adding to Your Healthcare Leadership Team

Dawn Pascale

Soft Skills to Look for When Adding to Your Healthcare Leadership Team

You’ve heard about soft skills. They remain critically important to any job. But they are perhaps more important in healthcare, where the camaraderie and communication of teams can save lives.

What soft skills matter to your healthcare clinical and administrative leadership teams? We have answers that will help inform your hiring process.

Why Are Soft Skills Important in Healthcare?

Pure technical skills with no empathy in healthcare almost certainly assures you will have lower patient satisfaction scores. When you’re sick, you want your doctor to care, not just give you a pill. The same is true for healthcare leaders. Being an administrator who strictly cares about the nuts and bolts of operations is one thing, but being a leader takes soft skills if you want to rally a team around you. So, what are soft skills?

Soft skills are the human characteristics that make up our personalities and impact how we lead. Soft skills are critical to patient safety and satisfaction. But soft skills make the difference when your team faces adversity and needs encouragement and support. Imagine a healthcare clinical or administrative leader without communication skills and you’ll start to understand why we must screen for soft as well as hard skills when hiring at every level of an organization.

Fundamental Truths About Soft Skills

KevinMD covered this topic in a recent blog. After reviewing the research, he concluded there are some fundamental truths about soft skills, including:

  • Trust in a leader enhances team performance. He describes a graph the Navy Seals use with performance on one axis and trust on another axis. The goal is to find leaders who score high on both.
  • Soft skills such as effective communication or high ethical standards should be taught because the data shows us you aren’t born with these soft skills baked right into a person.
  • Servant leadership is also important. True leaders cannot just have charisma and vision, but they must also have the soft skills to lead. True leaders should inspire trust in others with an attitude of, “Trust is not about you as the leader. Trust is about those you are leading.”
  • The best leaders practice self-compassion and honesty with themselves even before they lead others.

So now that we understand these fundamental truths, what soft skills are important to your healthcare leadership team.

Tops Soft Skills for Your Healthcare Leaders

The 2022 Workplace Learning Trends Report offers insight into some of the soft skills critical for any leader, but especially in healthcare. They include:

  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Critical thinking
  • Problem Solving
  • Emotional maturity
  • Empathy
  • Creativity
  • Adaptability

Textbook publisher Elsevier also added a few recommended soft skills:

  • Compassion
  • Patience
  • Proactivity
  • Ethical
  • Honest
  • Strong work ethic
  • Time management

Want to Learn More? Contact Our Team Today

Screening for soft skills during the recruiting process is not only important—it’s also tricky. It’s another reason why you need the expert team at MedSource Consultants to pre-screen your healthcare candidates as part of our recruiting process. We can help you meet your hiring goals in Chicago, IL; Milwaukee, WI and beyond. Contact us today.