There is a lot of talk about #financialfreedom or growing financially and reaching a state where you can solve financial problems without limitations.
I always like to say, at the foundation of financial freedom is your skill set.
I want to talk about soft skills in this particular content.
Soft skills are the building blocks to achieving financial freedom. Here’s how six essential soft skills could impact your financial game in 2024.
- Emotional Intelligence (EQ): Managing emotions wisely. Avoiding a bad investment could save you 5 million XAF that might have been lost in a risky venture. EQ helps you think before you take the step. People with EQ do not make decisions from the place of excitement.
- Negotiation Skills: Bargaining to get the best deal.
Let’s say you own a small business and you’re negotiating a deal with a supplier. The initial quote for supplies is 50 million XAF per year. You negotiate terms, perhaps by committing to a longer contract or promising prompt payment, and manage to get a 10% discount. That reduces your costs to 45 million XAF, saving you 5 million XAF each year.
- Networking: Building valuable relationships. A strong network can help you land a side gig that increases your income by 500,000 XAF monthly or 6 million XAF annually.
- Time Management: Maximizing productivity. By allocating just two more hours a week to freelance work, you can rake in an additional 200,000 XAF each month, amounting to 2.4 million XAF a year.
- Critical Thinking: Analyzing situations carefully. Catching an investment or industry trend early could offer you a 20% return, turning your 5 million XAF into 6 million XAF—a 1 million XAF gain.
- Adaptability: Adjusting to change quickly. When one income stream drops, your adaptability could help you pivot and create a new venture earning 3 million XAF yearly.
- Communication Skills: Conveying ideas effectively. Say you’re in sales, and superior communication allows you to close an additional 3 deals a month, bringing in an extra 1 million XAF. Over a year, that’s 12 million XAF just for being a clear communicator.
- Resilience: The ability to bounce back from setbacks. After a failed venture that cost you 10 million XAF, your resilience enables you to start a new business that eventually makes 20 million XAF annually, doubling your initial loss.
- Problem-Solving: Finding effective solutions to challenges. Suppose your company faces a 1 million XAF fine due to compliance issues. Your problem-solving skills find a way to meet regulations, avoiding the fine and saving the business money.
1o. Decision-Making: The ability to make choices quickly and wisely. Let’s say you’re eyeing two investments: one risky, one safe. Quick but smart decision-making helps you opt for the safer investment, yielding a reliable 10% return and netting you an extra 1 million XAF on a 10 million XAF investment.
I always say, you will hardly make money above the quality of your skill set. Master these soft skills and others, and you’ll have a tangible, quantitative edge on your journey to financial freedom. Be a seeker of knowledge.
All amounts used in this article are imaginary. Contextualize your case.
Dr. Javnyuy Joybert