Top 20 Soft Skills for Managers: How to Develop These Skills

What soft skills for managers are the most important? What are some of the top soft skills for managers?

Soft skills for managers are those non-technical abilities that allow us to communicate effectively and build relationships. These include interpersonal communication, leadership, negotiation, time management, decision making, problem-solving, creativity, self-awareness, and emotional intelligence.

Managers who have developed these skills tend to perform better at their jobs, earn higher salaries and enjoy greater job satisfaction. If you want to become a manager, then you need to develop these skills.

What Are Soft Skills?

what are soft skills

Soft skills are those abilities that help us interact with other people effectively and efficiently. They include interpersonal skills such as empathy, self-awareness, social awareness, emotional intelligence, and adaptability. These skills can be learned through training or experience.

Why do Managers Need Soft Skills?

Managers need soft skills because they are responsible for managing other people. Soft skills for managers include communication skills, leadership skills, and problem-solving skills. These skills help managers to lead and motivate others.

Top 20 Soft Skills for Managers in 2022

1. Empathy


Empathy is the ability to understand another person’s feelings and emotions. This skill is essential to being a manager because it helps build employee trust, respect, and loyalty.

To be effective at managing others, you need to empathize with them. To do this, you must put yourself in their shoes and imagine how they feel.

If you cannot empathize with your employees, you won’t be able to motivate them and lead them effectively. Instead, you’ll end up micromanaging them and creating resentment instead of motivation.

When you show empathy, you demonstrate that you care about your employees’ well-being. And when you care about your employees, you create a positive work environment where everyone feels valued and respected.

This creates a culture of trust and loyalty, which leads to better performance and greater productivity.

Here are some tips for practicing empathy:

1. Listen carefully.

2. Ask questions.

3. Show interest.

4. Be curious.

5. Smile.

6. Make eye contact.

2. Self Awareness


Self-awareness is the ability to recognize your strengths and weaknesses. This skill helps you understand yourself better and improve your performance.

To be self-aware, you need to evaluate yourself objectively. Ask yourself questions like these:

What am I good at? What am I not so great at?

How does this affect me professionally? How does it impact others?

Who are my friends? Who are my enemies?

What motivates me? What demotivates me?

What makes me happy? What makes me sad?

What would I like to change about myself?

What would I never change about myself?

These questions help you identify your strengths and weaknesses. Once you’ve done that, you can use them to develop goals and plans for improvement.

Once you’re self-aware, you’ll be able to take control of your life and set realistic goals. And when you achieve those goals, you’ll feel proud of yourself and motivated to keep going.

3. Leadership

Leaders inspire others to achieve great things. They’re not afraid to take risks and are willing to step out of their comfort zone. Leaders are comfortable with ambiguity, uncertainty, and change.

They’re open to feedback, and they’re able to adapt quickly to changing circumstances.

Leaders are humble yet confident. They’re authentic and transparent. They’re honest and trustworthy. They’re passionate and focused. And they’re committed to continuous improvement.

If you want to be a leader, here are some tips.

4. Communication

Communication is the most important skill for any manager. Without it, you’re just another employee.

If you communicate well, you can be a great leader. But if you don’t, you won’t last long at work.

Here are some tips to help you improve your communication skills:

1. Be honest.

2. Listen carefully.

3. Don’t interrupt.

4. Ask questions.

5. Say thank you.

6. Use positive language.

7. Show empathy.

8. Smile.

9. Be friendly.

10. Be patient.

5. Collaboration

Managers need soft skills to collaborate effectively with others. They must work well with diverse groups, including those who may not share their same values or beliefs.

They must be able to communicate clearly and persuasively, and they must be able to listen carefully to understand the needs of others. And they must be able to motivate others to achieve common goals.

If you’re looking for ways to improve your management skills, consider taking a leadership course at a local college or university.

6. Creativity

creativity manager skills

Creative thinking is essential for any manager because it helps them solve problems and find solutions to complex issues. Creativity is not just limited to art and design; it’s also applied to problem-solving, decision-making, and innovation.

To be creative, you need to understand the situation’s context and the environment’s constraints. This means being able to identify the problem and its root cause.

Once you’ve identified the problem, you must analyze the options available to solve it. Then, you must decide whether the solution is feasible and cost-effective. Finally, you must implement the solution.

If you’re not creative, you won’t be able to solve problems creatively. So, learn to be creative!

7. Adaptability

Managers who are adaptable can change and adjust to changing circumstances. They’re flexible and can quickly learn new things.

They’re also able to work well with others and build relationships.

These soft skills for managers are essential for managers in the workplace today. But what happens when technology advances faster than we can keep up? What happens when artificial intelligence takes over our jobs?

What happens when robots take over our factories?

If you’re not prepared to be adaptable, you may find yourself out of a job.

That’s why adaptability is a critical skill for managers in the workplace in 2022.

8. Problem Solving

Managers need soft skills that help them solve problems. Problem-solving is critical for any manager because it helps them keep things running smoothly.

When faced with a problem, managers should ask themselves three questions:

1) What am I trying to accomplish?

2) What options exist?

3) Which option would be most effective?

If you’re not sure what to do next, take some time to brainstorm solutions. Then pick the solution that seems most logical and implement it.

Once you’ve implemented a solution, evaluate its effectiveness. Make adjustments until you find the perfect solution.

This process of evaluating and adjusting is called problem-solving.

9. Decision Making

When making decisions, we often rely on our gut instinct. But there’s a better way to make decisions.

Research shows that we can make better decisions using our brains instead of relying on our gut. So, next time you need to make a decision, try this simple technique:

1) Write down everything you know about the issue at hand.

2) List the pros and cons of each option.

3) Rank them based on importance.

4) Choose the most important option.

5) Implement your chosen solution.

6) Evaluate your results.

If you’ve ever tried this technique, you know it works. And it doesn’t matter whether you’re trying to decide between two options or hundreds. The same process applies to any situation where you must make a quick decision.

This method is called Decision Making. It’s not rocket science, but it does require practice. However, once you master the art, you’ll be able to make better decisions faster than ever.

10. Teamwork

teamwork as a manager skill

Managers need soft skills to be effective leaders. But many managers lack these soft skills for managers because they’ve never been trained.

When you’re a manager, you’re responsible for leading a team. And when you lead a team, you must understand the strengths and weaknesses of each member of the team.

But most managers aren’t taught this skill. They learn it on the job, through trial and error. So they end up managing teams poorly.

That’s why it’s important to train yourself in teamwork skills. You can become a better manager, and your team members will appreciate your efforts.

11. Innovation

If you’re not innovating, you’re falling behind. Innovation is critical to staying ahead of the game. And innovation isn’t just about technology. It’s also about culture, process, and attitude.

To innovate, you must be willing to take risks, break the rules, and try things differently. But don’t worry. The rewards are worth it.

When you innovate, you create value for yourself and others. You become indispensable. Your company becomes more profitable. Your employees feel valued. And your customers are delighted.

But innovation doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time and effort. So start now. Start today.

And remember, innovation starts with you.

12. Critical Thinking

Critical thinking is critically analyzing information, ideas, and opinions. This skill is essential for any manager because it helps them understand their own strengths and weaknesses, learn from mistakes, and improve performance.

Managers who lack critical thinking skills often cannot recognize when they’re making poor decisions. They may not be able to identify problems early enough to prevent them from happening. And they may not be able to evaluate the impact of their actions on others.

To become a better manager, develop your critical thinking skills. Start by asking yourself questions like these:

What am I missing here? What assumptions am I making? What evidence do I have to support this decision?

How would I feel if I were the person being evaluated? What would I need to hear to convince me?

What are the consequences of this decision? Is there another way to achieve the same goal?

If I’m wrong, what should I do next?

These questions help you identify your blind spots and avoid common errors. Once you’ve identified your blind spots, practice applying critical thinking to real-life situations.

When you’re ready, share your thoughts with your team. Ask them to critique your reasoning and offer suggestions for improvement. Then ask them to apply critical thinking to their own work.

You’ll soon find that people respect those who think critically and are willing to admit when they’re wrong. You’ll gain credibility among your peers and earn their trust.

13. Integrity

integrity as a manager

When we talk about integrity, we’re talking about honesty, trustworthiness, and being fair. Integrity means treating others fairly, not taking advantage of them, and not lying.

If you’re honest, trustworthy, and fair, you’ll be able to build relationships with others and gain respect. And when you gain respect, you gain influence.

And when you gain influence, you win. So integrity is the foundation of any successful relationship.

14. Honesty

If you’re honest, you’ll be rewarded. Honesty pays off.

But honesty doesn’t just pay off; it also makes life better. People who are dishonest tend to cheat others out of money, property, and relationships. They also tend to lie, steal, and manipulate others.

And when people aren’t honest, they often get fired, lose friends, and are sued.

So if you want to succeed at work, keep your mouth shut. And if you want to succeed in life, keep your hands clean.

15. Trustworthiness

If you’re looking for a job, trustworthiness is a skill employers value most. So, if you want to be hired, learn how to build trust with others.

How do you build trust? First, show that you care about others. Second, listen carefully to understand others’ needs and concerns. Third, help them solve problems. Fourth, reward them when they succeed. Fifth, apologize when you fail. Sixth, thank them when they help you. Seventh, treat everyone fairly. Eighth, keep promises. Ninth, be honest. Tenth, be trustworthy.

Finally, be yourself. Don’t try to fake being someone you’re not. Instead, be genuine and authentic. Your reputation will speak for itself.

16. Humility

Humility is the ability to admit when you’re wrong. Humility is important because it helps you avoid making mistakes.

If you’re humble enough to admit you’re mistaken, you won’t be afraid to ask questions, seek help, and learn from others.

When you’re humble, you’re open to feedback and criticism. And feedback and criticism are essential for growth.

Feedback and criticism are not only helpful; they’re necessary. Without them, you’ll never improve.

And humility is not just for managers. Everyone needs to practice humility.

Think about it. Do you ever feel embarrassed admitting that you made a mistake? Or do you try to hide your mistakes and pretend everything was perfect?

If you answered yes to either question, you need to work on being more humble.

To become more humble, you must recognize your own faults and shortcomings. Then you must admit them to yourself and others.

Once you’ve admitted your flaws, you’ll be able to accept constructive criticism and grow from it.

But humility isn’t just for managers. Everyone should strive to be humble.

17. Respectfulness

Respectfulness is a soft skill that helps employees work together effectively. It’s important because it builds trust among co-workers and fosters cooperation.

When you respect others, you show them that you care about them and value their opinions. And when you show respect, you demonstrate that you understand that everyone has different strengths and weaknesses.

Managers who respect their staff can build strong relationships with their team members, leading to better communication and collaboration. This makes it easier for managers to solve problems and find creative solutions.

By respecting others, you’re building a positive culture within your organization. And this creates a foundation for future growth and success.

18. Accountability

accountability as a soft skill

Accountability is a soft skill that every manager needs. Without accountability, no one knows whether you’re working hard enough, getting things done, or meeting deadlines. Accountability helps you be successful because it gives you feedback about your performance.

Without accountability, you won’t know if you’re doing well or poorly, so you’ll never improve. So when you need to hold yourself accountable, ask yourself these questions:

How am I performing today? What did I accomplish yesterday? What should I work on tomorrow?

If you answer honestly, you’ll find out if you’re making progress and learn where you need improvement.

When you’re not being held accountable, you’re not learning anything new. And when you’re not learning anything, you’re not improving. So accountability is essential for any manager.

19. Responsibility

Managers must be responsible for everything that happens at work. They’re accountable for every decision made, every action taken, and every outcome achieved.

They’re responsible for ensuring employees are well trained, productive, and happy. Managers are responsible for keeping track of employee performance and ensuring that everyone knows what’s expected of them.

And they’re responsible for making sure that the company makes money. This means managing budgets, hiring staff, and developing strategies to grow revenue.

Managers must be able to lead by example, and they should never delegate responsibility to anyone else.

If you’re a manager, you need to take personal responsibility for everything that happens at your workplace. And if you’re not a manager, you need to learn these soft skills for managers now.

20. Initiative

Managers who take the initiative are the ones who go above and beyond to help others succeed. They’re not afraid to ask questions, offer suggestions, or suggest solutions.

They’re the ones who step out of their comfort zone and try new things. They’re the ones who push themselves to learn new skills and grow professionally. And they’re the ones who inspire others to do the same.

That’s why managers who take the initiative are essential to any organization.

What Soft Skills Managers Need Most?

managers communicating skills

Manager’s needed soft skills include communication, leadership, and problem-solving skills. These skills are essential for any manager, especially those who work closely with others.

Communication skills are important because they help you communicate effectively with others and also help you understand what other people want from you.

Leadership skills are needed because you have to lead your team and be able to motivate them to do great things.

Finally, problem-solving skills are needed because you will face many challenges at work, and you must be able to solve these problems quickly.

Why Soft Skills Are a Manager’s Most Significant Skills?

Soft skills are an essential part of any manager’s toolkit. They help you build relationships with people, manage conflict effectively, and communicate clearly. These soft skills for managers also make you a better team player, often required for success at work.

How do the Top Soft Skills Apply to Managers?

The top soft skills apply to managers because they need to communicate effectively with others, work well under pressure, and motivate team members. These skills are essential for any manager, regardless of the industry.

Why Are Soft Skills Important?

Soft skills are essential for success in any career. They help you communicate effectively with people, work well under pressure, and solve problems creatively. They also make you more attractive to potential employers.

Why do Soft Skills Improve the Quality of Management?

Soft skills for managers are important because they help them communicate effectively with others. Quality Managers who possess these skills are better at building relationships with colleagues, customers, and suppliers. They also tend to be more effective communicators, which helps them build strong teams and motivate staff.


FAQ soft skills for managers

What Are Employees’ Soft Skills?

Employees’ soft skills include communication, leadership, problem-solving, and teamwork. These skills are important for any company, especially when working together closely. Soft skills are also important for job seekers because employers look at these skills when hiring new employees.

How Can Soft Skills Make You a Better Employee?

Soft skills are important for any job, especially when dealing with customers. These include things like patience, empathy, communication, and leadership. You must learn to communicate effectively, listen well, and lead others to succeed at work.

What Are Good Managerial Skills?

Good managerial skills include delegating tasks, being flexible when working under pressure, and working well with others. A manager must also be able to motivate his/her team members, communicate effectively, and lead by example.

What Makes a Manager a Great Leader?

A great leader has the ability to motivate others to achieve goals. They also have the ability to inspire people to do better work. Great leaders can create a positive environment for everyone around them.

Is Leadership a Soft Skill?

Yes, Leadership is a soft skill requiring communication, listening, and problem-solving skills. However, leadership is also a mindset where you must be able to motivate others and inspire them to achieve great things.

What Are Career Soft Skills?

Career soft skills are the non-technical skills needed for a successful career. These include communication, leadership, teamwork, problem-solving, and self-awareness. The best way to develop these skills is through experience.

What Are Workplace Soft Skills?

Workplace soft skills include communication, leadership, problem-solving, conflict resolution, negotiation, decision making, and teamwork. These skills are important for any job, whether working at a company or running your own business.


In conclusion, soft skills for managers are essential for any manager. These personality traits allow us to connect with others, communicate effectively, and build relationships. These skills aren’t taught in schools, but they’ve been learned through practice and experience. And if you want to succeed in your career, you must develop soft skills for managers now.

About Skillabilly Editorial Staff

The Editorial Staff at Skillabilly is a team of Personal and professional experts in the education and career services industry led by Shalev Morag. We have been creating Skill guides and tutorials since 2022, and Skillabilly has become an impactful free skills and abilities resource site in the industry.