Communication And Soft Skill as Essential Managerial skills
For Small Scale Entrepreneurs: A Study


By

Anita Mishra
Sr. Lecturer (Business Communication Area)
Gandhi Engineering College
Bhubaneswar
 


Abstract: Communication skill and soft skill are the two important skills for the success for any organization irrespective of their size and type. Communication skill is often misunderstood as a specific language skill. Similarly, Soft skill is also taken as a part of the same language skill and personality studies to some extent.  These two are essential skills for both entrepreneurs and entrapreneurs. This paper intends to highlight some of the important features and factors to show the essence of soft skill and communication skill.

Key words: Communication skill, Soft Skill

Introduction:

Entrepreneurs are a diverse set of people, with a range of personalities and a range of temperaments. Entrepreneurs tend to need a well rounded portfolio of skills since they frequently only have themselves to depend on and do not have the luxury of others making up for any deficiency they might have. Entrepreneurs are not risk-focused, but opportunity-focused. Many of the traits found in successful entrepreneurs are found among successful leaders and managers in all types of organizations, not just entrepreneurial businesses.
An entrepreneur is a person who organizes and manages a business undertaking and assumes a risk for the sake of profit. Operating a business takes certain skills. Few people have all the skills needed to run a business, but they can compensate for their weaknesses by hiring staff or consultants and by becoming more knowledgeable through education or training. To start and run a business successfully these skills are required. Beauty Parlor and boutique are some of the business options for ladies in the urban areas. The two industries demand both technical and managerial skills for its smooth maintenance and regular growth. Both these industries also demand a formal training. The two cases in this paper are based on two such women entrepreneurs. Both of them received formal training but we shall examine how they vary in certain requisite communication fields and how it has ultimately affected their progress in either way. Soft Skill and proper communication is required to retain customers, to persuade, to market the products and skills and over all to maintain a good reputation among all which has a long lasting impact on the minds of the customers. It is a difficult task to use the methods of advertising and brand building for the small scale industries because they demand a sizable amount of money. Thus these industries have their services and personal touch, their behavior, attitude, dealings, gestures and effective way of communication to retain their customers for a long time.

Soft Skill and Communication Skill requirement

Soft skill is one of the basic skill requirements for the entrepreneurs. They should understand the basics of this. Soft skill includes one's attitude, behavior, manners, acceptance and tolerance to criticism and problems. As an entrepreneur you don't have the liberty to takes things and situations for granted. At every step, they have to face challenges from different spheres. Exclusively the women entrepreneurs face a lot of problems if they are not the bread winners of the family. They are often asked to make compromises to meet the requirements of the home front. Thus soft skill is very important for these types of women entrepreneurs to maintain a well deserved balance between the two. The following managerial Soft Skills can be really crucial for them.

1. They should always have a positive attitude with an assertive communication style.
2. They should not often show their work in comparison to their household duties.
3. They should not disturb other members of the family with the presence of their customers if they are operating from their residence as in the two cases in point.
4. They should not exhibit high handedness during their dealings with their customers if they have a close proximity of the customers during their service to them.
5. They should often show interest in whatever the customer says relating to their service.
6. They should not ask unnecessary questions to the customers.
7. They should not develop a very close relationship with  the customers.
8. They should always respect the requirement of the customers.
9. They must always make their stance clear and should not make false commitments.
10. They should not criticize the customers openly.
11. They must maintain a customer data base and manage the services professionally.
12. They should be loyal to their customers.
13. They must exhibit genuine happiness to see the customers.
14. Their personal problems must always be their own and should not be discussed with the customers
15. They must have patience.
16. They should be well dressed.

Similarly, if we look at the communication skill requirements we shall also find several verbal and non-verbal communication aspects as the requisite features for  small and medium scale  women entrepreneurs. Written communication skill is also essential to some extent for documentation purpose. The communication requirements can be summarized as the following:

1. They should be good listeners.
2. They must decode the mind of their customer.
3. They must give information clearly.
4. They should not give a negative response .
5. They should have the required writing skill.
6. They should be able to decode written communication.
7. They should not use negative nonverbal communication.
8. They should use a tone and peach soothing to the ears.
9. They must say what the customer wants to listen or prefers to listen.
10. They should use the language with which the customer is familiar.
11. They should avoid jokes and making fun.
12. They should always sound interested in what the customers say.
13. They should accept and appreciate the customers as they are.

CONCLUSION:Communication is the need of the hour. Although there are several courses available these days to provide proper training to become a successful small scale entrepreneur, but very few ventures actually succeed. The reason may not be essentially the above two but a deep insight into the subject would definitely indicate at the fact that all the human virtues of sustainability are related to communication some way or the other. Soft skill is life skill for all entrepreneurs. So to relate to one's self and to add that extra degree of confidence it is important to enhance these two skills.

References

[1] Baldwin, J. et al. (1997, November). Failing Concerns: Business Bankruptcy in Canada. Ottawa: Statistics
Canada Cat. No. CS61-525-XPE. Retrieved April, 30, 2007, from z http://dsp-psd.tpsgc.gc.ca
/Collection/Statcan/61-525-X/61-525-XIE1997001.pdf
[2] Gerber, M. E. (2001). The E-Myth Revisited: why most small businesses don't work and what to do about it.
New York: Harper Collins
[3] National agency for development of small and medium enterprises. (2005) Research of potential for
entrepreneurial activity
[Slovak version]. Bratislava: NARMSP
[4] Newton, K. (2001, March 3). Management skills for small business. Retrieved April 30, 2007, from
http://strategis.ic.gc.ca/epic/site/sbrp-rppe.nsf/en/rd00255e.html
[5] Papula, J. (1995). Minimum of a manager: Profession that pays out [Slovak version]. Bratislava: Elita
 


Anita Mishra
Sr. Lecturer (Business Communication Area)
Gandhi Engineering College
Bhubaneswar
 

Source: E-mail September 6, 2011

          

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