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Which side of the fence are you on in this long standing debate? We are defining ‘soft skills’ as the personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people. Examples would therefore be: listening, showing empathy, negotiating, informing. Do you think that eLearning has any part to play in this important people development agenda? We believe the answer is ‘Yes’ when used as part of an appropriate blended learning model.

Soft Skills

What eLearning can do is to provide learners with the resources to understand what the behavioural issue/soft skill is, and what it isn't, and how it can make a difference in their working lives and what the key areas are that they need to focus on if they are going to develop it.

What eLearning is ineffective at doing is allowing learners to practice and experience the behaviour.

In this way eLearning can play an important early role in preparing people with the underpinning knowledge and understanding for them to embark on behavioural change. This closely aligns to the ‘10’ in the 70:20:10 model of Morgan McCall and his colleagues working at the Centre for Creative Leadership (CCL) which is currently (and very rightly) gaining credibility and following in the L&D community. The 70:20:10 model recognises that effective learning comprises of all three of experiential, social and formal settings, but not in equal measure. Formal learning is represented as the ratio 10 in the model and indicates its subservience to experiential (70) and social (20) settings. But don’t be fooled into thinking that it is therefore of little value or significance; rather consider it as a necessary precursor to an effective experiential and social learning setting.

eLearning can therefore be a critical element of an effective a blended learning model for soft skills training agendas when used to prepare students with a good understanding of the subject domain prior to other activities and support which offer more experiential learning and coaching opportunities.

Course-Source offers L&D organisations access to a wide range of soft skills eLearning courses from range of industry-leading publishers. If you are not yet a member of Course-Source, then registration could not be easier and only takes two minutes.