These Non-Technical Competencies
Will Help You Earn Career Security

Whether you are an employee, independent consultant, or entrepreneur, technical competencies are necessary, but not sufficient, for personal success and fulfillment. This observation applies whether you are in the private, public, academic, or volunteer sectors. Non-technical or “soft side” competencies enable you to work more effectively with supervisors, supervisees, colleagues, clients, customers, students, the public, other stakeholders, and members of your community, neighborhood, and family. Augmenting technical competencies with “soft-side” knowledge, skills, and attitudes is the key to earning career security which is a much more viable life strategy than chasing job security.

"The world advances by impossibilities achieved."

-David B. Steinman, PE, founder of NSPE and designer of the Mackinac Bridge


News

MENTAL LITERACY (HOW TO USE YOUR BRAIN BETTER) PRESENTATIONS -- In response to invitations, I made the following presentations in September and early October. The common element of my comments to highly varied audiences was if you learn brain basics, you will be able to live and work smarter -- more effective, innovative, and creative -- while making fewer errors and reducing stress.

  • Indiana Society of Professional Land Surveyors -- Northwest Branch, “Use Neuroscience 101 to Live and Work Smarter,” September 14.
  • Valparaiso University engineering students and faculty, “Use Brain Basics to be More Productive and Innovative,” September 15.
  • National Precast Concrete Association (Scott: Please work in their website http://precast.org/), Carmel, IN, “Innovation: It’s in the Brain!” October 5. (A webinar co-presented, with Claude Goguen, PE, Director of Sustainability and Technical Education of NPCA, to 99 sites in the U.S. and Canada, India, Indonesia, New Zealand, and Uruguay.)
  • Blue Sky Financial Partners, “You, Your Brain, and the Rest of Your Life,” October 6.

To my great satisfaction, these diverse audiences -- surveyors, small business owners, engineering students and faculty, designers of concrete structures, and financial advisors and their clients -- responded positively to my message and expressed appreciation for it.

SCOPE CREEP -- THAT PERPETUAL PLAGUE ON PROJECTS AND HOW TO PREVENT IT – In September, as part of ASCE’s continuing education program, I presented the webinar “Scope Creep: Focus on Prevention and Improve Project Performance.” I offered 12 scope prevention tips. For information on how to purchase this, and any other of my over 20 archived webinars, and earn CEUs, go to: http://mylearning.asce.org/diweb/catalog/c/79/q/walesh/f2/1/n/0

ARCHIVED WEBINARS – Since 2002, I have presented 330 webinars as part of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) continuing education program. Twenty of my leadership, management, marketing, communication, and ethics webinars are archived and available for purchase at individual, group, ASCE member, and non-ASCE member rates. By taking and passing a post-test, users receive CEUs based on the webinar length. Note: Any of the webinar topics, or other topics, can be presented in-house at your organization in which case we would tailor them to your challenging issues, problems, and opportunities. Contact me at stuwalesh@comcast.net or 219-242-1704 for more information. For examples of clients I have served and services provided, click here.


Are You Looking For?

Looking for a gift for a recent college graduate who wants to have a successful career? Then consider one of these books: Introduction to Creativity and Innovation for Engineers, Engineering Your Future, and Managing and Leading.

This Website Will Enable You To Improve Your "Soft Side" Competencies and Release The Leader Within You

So called nontechnical, “soft side” competencies are often devalued or diminished. They are said to be of little importance or easy. “Soft side” competencies are neither.

Too many professionals fail to advance in their careers – to acquire career security – because they lack “soft side” knowledge, skills, and attitudes. Sometimes they do not realize their liability. We need to know something is “broken” if we are to “fix” it. In other cases, individuals know they have “soft side” deficiencies but fail to see the value in taking corrective action. Either way, the result is the same – failure to realize individual potential, to find and release the leader within.

If you recognize the value of “soft side” competencies you also know that they are not necessarily easy to acquire. Mastering nontechnical competencies requires knowledge of best practices and then thoughtful application of them. This website provides resources to help you practice improved stewardship with your gifts and your personality profile and make better use of who you are and what and who you know.


Thoughts For Supervisors, Managers, Executives,
Elected and Appointed Officials, and
Human Resources Personnel
To Help You With Your Mentoring and Coaching Efforts

You are responsible for the development of supervisees and others. You are also busy. Please consider two suggestions.

  1. If study of specific nontechnical or “soft-side” topics is likely to be of value to certain supervisees and others, refer them to this website or specific portions of it, such as the Managing and Leading Books.


  2. Some “soft side” needs or deficiencies may go beyond individuals, that is, many individuals at one or more locations need help. For example, individuals may be working extra hard but not achieving as much as you and they would like. In this case, perhaps an on-site, face-to-face seminar or workshop about time management, effectiveness and efficiency, goal setting, and/or team essentials would be appropriate. Another option, and often a very cost-effective approach for simultaneous delivery to two or more locations, is a webinar, that is, use of the internet and a telephone conference call for which no one needs to travel anywhere. If the group mode of education and training interests you, for examples, please refer to the web page Tailored Education and Training. If you would like to discuss the feasibility of tailoring a seminar, webinar, or workshop to your organization’s needs, please call me at 219-242-1704 or contact me at stuwalesh@comcast.net.

Final Thought

We seem to be under ever-increasing pressure to increase productivity, to accomplish more with what we have and, sometimes, to do more with less. At a deeper level, many of us aspire to be even better stewards of our time and talents. At the very deepest level, we yearn for more than personal success; we seek significance in what we do. We want to get beyond ourselves, positively affect others, and make a difference. This requires managing and leading ability.

You can improve your managing and leading knowledge, skills, and attitudes – your “soft side” competencies—so that you can remain employable, earn career security, and enjoy success and significance.

Stuart G. Walesh


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Do you have a question, suggestion, idea, or other concern? If so, contact me at stuwalesh@comcast.net or 219-242-1704

Introduction to Creativity and Innovation for Engineers
Introduction to Creativity and Innovation for Engineers

Managing and Leading: 52 Lessons Learned for Engineers
Managing and Leading: 52 Lessons Learned for Engineers

Engineering Your Future
Engineering Your Future

Introduction to Creativity and Innovation for Engineers  Global Edition
Introduction to Creativity and
Innovation for Engineers -
Global Edition

Managing and Leading: 
44 Lessons Learned for Pharmacists
Managing and Leading:
44 Lessons Learned for
Pharmacists

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