The job skills needed that robots can’t master
THE proliferation of artificial intelligence is increasing the value of emotional intelligence, with employers searching for a new type of skill set.
In many workplaces, experience and technical capability are taking a back seat to creativity and communication.
OrgDev Institute report The future of HR said EQ (emotional quotient), also known as emotional intelligence, was often associated with optimism, greater impulse control, better mood and empathy.
It could also affect workplace behaviours such as commitment, performance, talent development, teamwork, innovation, quality of service and loyalty.
"EQ is also useful for group development as the success of the group lies in knowing each person's strengths and weaknesses and leveraging these strengths," the report revealed.
"When it comes to the ability to cope with demands and pressures, those with high EQ have the skills required."
Deloitte Access Economics report Soft skills for business success predicted occupations requiring soft skills - such as communication and collaboration - would account for two-thirds of all jobs by 2030, up from half in 2000.
These jobs were expected to grow at 2.5 times the rate of jobs in other occupations.
OrgDev Institute chief development officer John Belchamber said soft skills might be the only thing AI could not supersede in the workplace.
"I'm seeing the need for soft skills really rising," he said.
"We've been hearing that as AI takes over, it can find out all the information, but it doesn't know what to do with it. AI can find the data but how does it bring in the human skills to say, 'that's what happened in the past (so) what's the impact in the future?'."
Mark Fusco, founder and managing director of strategic advisory Advanced Focus, said the proliferation of AI meant experience was becoming less important in workers.
New software was able to simulate situations based on the past so human knowledge was not necessarily needed.
In the future, creativity would be the priority.
"You need to be able to look differently at the problem and be able to try new things and not let experience limit you to how we have always done it," he said.
"Often the best solutions come from a creative mind."
Fusco said people who wanted to remain employable into the future should focus on skills in which they could outperform computers.
"If the machines can do it better, don't even try, but there are things computers can't do as well (as people) - the soft skills, the reasoning," he said.
He said continual learning was also increasingly important as change was rapid.
"You might come out of university with some knowledge but that is really just the starting point and every day you have to be building that knowledge bank," he said.
"Statistics from the World Economic Forum show more jobs will be created than lost.
"Try to not be afraid of the future but be aware. History tells us its not all negative, but we have got to have our eyes open and looking towards embracing it."