When it comes to the skills needed in the workplace, there's typically a strong emphasis on technical abilities, often referred to as hard skills. But soft skills are equally important, and in procurement they can really impact your level of success. The important soft skills needed for procurement professionals to be successful include:
- Time management
Without these your goals and desired level of success can be difficult to achieve. Here are five insightful TED Talks that can help you with your career as a procurement professional.
1. Negotiating - "Lessons From My Horse" by Margaret Neale
What does a horse have to do with negotiating? More than you'd think. In this TED Talk, Stanford Graduate School of Business professor Margaret Neale explains how negotiations aren't a battle, something every purchasing or procurement professional should consider.
Key takeaway: "Focus on solving the problem rather than winning the battle."
2. Time Management - "How to Save the World (or at least yourself) From Bad Meetings" by David Grady
How many meetings do you attend each week? Each day? In this TED Talk, David Grady discusses how we've become obsessed with meetings...to the point where we automatically accept any request for a meeting without fully understanding what the meeting is about and will accomplish.
Key takeaway: Before accepting an invitation to a meeting, kindly respond to the requester and find out what the goal of the meeting is.
3. Communication - "The Power of Vulnerability" by Brene Brown
Not directly related to communication, this great talk is about how to understand ourselves and others in order to communicate better. Brené Brown studies human connection -- our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity.
4. Teamwork - "How Great Leaders Inspire Action" by Simon Sinek
Leading a procurement team requires managers to have the ability to inspire and motivate employees. In this TED Talk about leadership, Simon Sinek explains how to do just that with his Golden Circle concept.
Key takeaway: Start with your 'why'.
5. Adaptability - "5 Ways to Lead in an Era of Constant Change" by Jim Hemerling
Procurement is always changing. New technology, procedures, regulations...they all have a constant effect on how purchasing managers conduct their jobs. Jim Hemerling discusses how this can be invigorating and not exhausting.
Key takeaway: Start with putting people first.