Vintage Is In: 5 Old Skills You Still Need
As new technology saturates the world, old skills are forgotten or lost. We stopped learning the typewriter because we have the computer; we moved away from the telegraph and towards the telephone. But with the introduction of new technology, we often forget to practice and master traditional, basic skills. We are all too willing to jump on the new tech is better bandwagon, which isn’t a bad thing, but forgetting to practice our base skills is.
Here are five skills we believe will never get old:
We have email; we don’t need phone skills!
Video did not kill the radio star, and email did not kill the phone call. Communication might have moved online, but email will never compare to the good old fashioned phone call. There are many situations where voice communication is still necessary.
Customer service (https://www.opensesame.com/c/rewards-telephone-courtesy-training-course): The reality of the situation is people often prefer talking things out rather than writing them. Solving problems entirely over email can be difficult and sometimes impossible, phone lines are necessary for complex or complicated correspondence.
Cold calling: If you’re cold calling, phones are the key to success, and not just because calling is in the name. “Cold emails” are too easy to ignore or lose in spam. Ignoring a phone call is much more difficult.
Trying to get a response: Thousands of emails every day fall into email spam filters and get ignored. There is no such thing as a phone spam filter so your messages are much less likely to get lost.
We don’t have to hand write; we have email and texting!
Texting is great in your social life and email is great for business correspondence. Nevertheless, nothing is as meaningful as the thought and effort that goes into handwritten notes or letters. If you interview for a position, a handwritten thank you will go a lot farther than an email. Similarly hand-written thank yous or invitations to clients, prospects, or connections have a personal flare to them. Being able to hand write clearly and legibly makes a difference.
We have LinkedIn; we don’t need resumes!
We are in the age of LinkedIn, personal videos, and personal websites. You might think these networking tools can replace the old-fashioned resume. Unfortunately, despite the inconvenient limitations of the traditionally one-page resume, almost all employers still expect one with your application. This means that you must put effort into your resume (https://www.opensesame.com/c/how-write-resume-gets-you-job-you-want-training-course). Because it is the first thing employers see when you apply for their position, you must have a professional and high quality resume. LinkedIn is a great tool, one you should utilize and possibly even link to in your resume, but it in no way replaces the resume (https://www.opensesame.com/c/selling-you-branding-your-resume-training-course).
We don’t need to learn grammar; we have autocorrect!
Being aware of grammar (https://www.opensesame.com/c/workplace-writing-grammar-training-course) and spelling is necessary for any successful communication despite the power of autocorrect and spell checkers. There are a couple reasons for this:
Handwritten correspondence: To put it simply, there is no spell check when you are not using a computer.
Technology can be wrong: Microsoft Office and Google docs won’t always be able to catch your mistakes. If you spell a word so wrong it becomes another word you might find your sentence with an unintended meaning. Grammar and spell checkers are great, but they aren’t always right.
Voice communications: When you’re talking and you’re speech is littered with atrocious grammar people will judge your professionality and proficiency.
We don’t need to practice in-person communication; we have the internet!
In this day-and-age, people often end up working from home or interacting with people primarily through a computer screen. Many believe if they possess enough hard skills they have no need for soft skills. This is woefully untrue. Interpersonal skills (https://www.opensesame.com/online-training-courses/business-skills/communication-skills?from=typeahead) will always be important. No matter your level of proficiency in a position, if you can’t work with people, you’re out. The modern world has little room for people who haven’t honed their face-to-face communication skills (https://www.opensesame.com/c/interpersonal-communication-training-course).
While the drumbeat of technology marches on, some traditional business skills still remain very relevant in the workplace…thankfully.