Hard vs Soft skills



If you're like me, you've been schooled in the scientific approach looking for hard black or white answers. Rational thinking looks for facts, evidence and theories that can give predictions. Unfortunately people have desired irrational capabilities like innovation,creativity, and intuition. Life apparently refuses to be hampered by reality, rather wants imagination to create possibility.

This week I experienced possibility through the creativity of a team of students who came up with a 'reverse Jenga' type game of tower-building that asks gamers to reflect on the need for soft and hard skills in project managers. There are no right or wrong answers; the rationale for choices must be justified.

Seeing people playing the game so differently has been intriguing. A strong foundation from only soft skills and so many of them felt surprising to me. The intertwining of hard and soft was built into the design of the game, yet how little players appreciate the difference. Do we really pay so little attention to what 'really works' in collaborative efforts? I was personally left wondering whether hard vs soft was a reflection of human preferences for control vs opening up possibility.


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