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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 153-154

Medical profession and soft skills

Vice - Chancellor, National Institute of Ayurveda Deemed to be University (De Novo), Jaipur, Rajasthan, India

Date of Submission31-Aug-2021
Date of Decision01-Sep-2021
Date of Acceptance01-Sep-2021
Date of Web Publication25-Sep-2021

Correspondence Address:
Sanjeev Sharma
National Institute of Ayurveda Deemed to be University (De Novo), Jaipur, Rajasthan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/joa.joa_281_21

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How to cite this article:
Sharma S. Medical profession and soft skills. J Ayurveda 2021;15:153-4

How to cite this URL:
Sharma S. Medical profession and soft skills. J Ayurveda [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 May 19];15:153-4. Available from: http://www.journayu.in/text.asp?2021/15/3/153/326711

Skills are necessary for every sphere of life may it be family life, studies, a job, profession, business, academics, or research. Even for personal happiness, well beingness and satisfaction various kinds of skills are mandatorily required. If someone is lacking in particular types of skills, then problems may arise resulting in conflicts, failures, dissatisfaction, breakups, and so many other problems in professional life, jobs, and business. In the medical profession also, such skills are essential for professional excellence, success, entrepreneurship, self-satisfaction, and the satisfaction of the patients and students. These skills have broadly been classified into two types, namely hard skills and soft skills.

Hard skills, “also called technical skills, are any skills relating to a specific task or situation. It involves both understanding and proficiency in such specific activity that involves methods, processes, procedures, or techniques” (DuBrin, Andrew, 2008). “These skills are easily quantifiable unlike soft skills, which are related to one's personality” (Staff, May 15, 2010). These are also skills that can be or have been tested and may entail some professional, technical, or academic qualification (Carter, Jenny; O'Grady, Michael; Rosen, Clive, 2018). “Hard skills are specific abilities which help people carry out different jobs. They are teachable, meaning that you can develop them through dedicated formal training and, for some careers, certain hard skills will be considered prerequisites. Hard skills are usually related to a particular field and require specific knowledge in order for them to be gained. Some of the most common examples of hard skills include:” A degree, diploma or certificate, particular training, technical qualification or ability like typing, short-hand, language learning, computer skills, and printing skills. Hard skills are generally formal, can be assessed and quantifiable. These skills are essential to be eligible for entry and promotion in a particular job, profession, or licensing. Hard skills are easy to embrace in the curriculum vitae (CV) of a person. One can mention his all qualifications and quantify his experience in his CV.

Soft skills refer to a broad umbrella of competencies, behaviors, personality skills, interpersonal skills, communication skills, social skills, character traits, attitudes, and career attributes (Robles, Marcel M. August12, 2016). These skills generally complement hard skills, vocational skills, and academic skills. Soft and communication skills are in fact, very important for any kind of success; however, these are difficult to measure or quantify and also difficult to incorporate in the CV. These skills help to handle interpersonal relations, to take appropriate and timely decisions, communicate effectively, good impressions, and professional gains. By developing and adopting these skills a person can become a team player, resilient, best time manager, problem solver, accountable, self-confident, leader, and good communicator. In the medical field, all these traits are essential for diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, understanding the patient, convincing him, gaining the faith of the patient and attendants, increasing the reputation of the doctor, or para-medics. Because, after all the patient is the fulcrum around which the whole medical profession revolves. Every person, particularly a medical professional should have the following key soft skills:

  Social Skills Top

Social skills guide us that how to behave and communicate with society or community and are always an asset. These include verbal and nonverbal communication, for example, speech or talking, face expressions, gestures, body postures, and eye connections. These skills are helpful in maintaining social relationships and the best interactions, conflict resolutions, sustaining friendships, help people to get along with others, respecting other's feelings, and using context-appropriate behavior. By this skill, a person can have an idea about others' feelings just like “putting own feet in other's shoes” and feel his problems and feelings.

  Communication Skills Top

Communication is a dynamic process and through this process, we convey a thought or feeling to someone else. Communication skills are very important for a successful journey of life and career. Communication includes oral (talking, speech, lectures, telephones, videos, teleconferences, etc.) or nonverbal communications (letters, mails, messages, written communications, banners, flyers, gestures, body language, facial expressions, eye contact, etc.) and comprises of thinking, listening, and speaking. When we are orally communicating with others, our language and tone should be balanced, soft, and based on the facts. As per Niti shataka

For effective communication, there is the need of an effective presenter, a good listener, a quick thinker, and win-win negotiator. High Order Thinking (HOT): It includes problem-solving potentials, critical thinking, and decision-making capacities. These skills are slightly difficult to learn and have a long-learning curve. However, are very crucial when managing difficult situations, novel tasks, and taking calculated risks. Self-Control: Self-control is such a skill that is the part of all skills and refers to delayed gratification, controls impulses, and emotions and focussed attention with proper direction. It enables successful decision-making, the resolution of conflict, and coherent communication. Its components include balance, calmness, determination, willpower, positive attitude, and confidence. Body Language Skills: Our body is the best reflection of the mind. What we are thinking and what we want to express is reflected by our body and the front person sometimes can get the message from our body or body parts without any verbal expression. It is one of the strongest means of nonverbal communications and emotions. Positive self-concept: It is a continuous progressive belief on ourselves that helps us to navigate the various tough situations in life. Self-concept is also explained as physically, emotionally, socially, spiritually, and in terms of any other aspects that make us who we are (Neill, 2005). It includes self-confidence, self-efficacy, self-awareness, beliefs, self-esteem, and sense of well-beingness and pride. “I believe in me” should be the thinking of a person. It is possible only when someone believes in his own abilities, qualities, and judgment, and inner strength. As per Indian philosophy, Atma (soul) cannot be destroyed or altered by any means


Similarly, self-confidence cannot be destroyed by any means if someone is having this. If you believe you can achieve anything in your life. We should have self-efficacy also means we should rely on our strengths and capacity. Bhartrihari his text Niti Shataka has written that highly irritated Bramha (the God of creation) can destroy for the swan the enjoyment of residing in beds of lotuses, but he cannot deprive him of his fame about the natural skill of separating milk from water


Hence, we should be determined and confident about our abilities, capacities, and capabilities. Influence: Developing influencing and leadership skills helps you to communicate your vision or goals, align the efforts of others, and build commitment from people at all levels. Influence can vary greatly at different levels in the organization and situation. Knowing your stakeholders or an audience is the key. One should think that to whom he is going to influence, for example, teacher, patient, boss, your peers, or customers? Hence, a person and situation-appropriate behavior is required all the times. Bhartrihari in Niti Shataka explains it as

Reflective practice: It is a process of continuous progressive learning through one's own actions and experiences. It is very important that our such learning should be reflected in our practice and we should pay critical attention to this to improve upon. It is the best way to bring together theoretical knowledge and practical experiential learning.

Here it is pertinent to mention that our ancient Indian literature in general and Ayurvedic literature, in particular, is having throughout undercurrent of ethics and soft skills. There is no better literature than these as a whole and one should go through this to learn soft skills and other many skills as per the need.


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