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January 31, 2006


James G

Good points, but what about the level of salesmanship shown by your average spiv/barrow boy type? :-)

Actually, I appreciate what you have to say regarding the hard vs. soft skills. I began my IT career in hard skills, but am now finding myself managing a team with about 15 Indians on it. I don't believe I've used a hard skill in the execution of my job since about 2001 or so.


You appear to leave out of your analysis "thick working class youngsters with good soft skills", which I would expect to be a quite material category. And since they are now receiving a university education, they will get on much better.

John East

Inspiring insight, a great post. I observed such pressures within industry over recent years.
I was a working class geek who chose a scientific career path which I thought to be consistent with my personality strengths, and weaknesses. As the years passed, UK science jobs began to disappear, and colleagues increasingly emigrated, often taking their jobs with them. I had to choose between moving myself, or changing by adding to my repertoire some of the softer skills you described like buying, selling, and developing more managerial and communication skills. I chose the latter, and it was not an easy transition. I was often struggling to compete with lesser qualified middle class colleagues to whom the soft skills appeared to come quite naturally.

John East

A thick person will still be thick whether or not he/she is awarded a degree under Tony Blair's "All shall have prizes" scheme.


Soft skills are rendered less necessary by the internet in some areas: with who do you negociate when you buy over the internet ?

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