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What are Hard Skills
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Hard Skills

What are Hard Skills

Definition of Hard Skills

Hard skills are teachable abilities or skill sets that are required for a particular occupation. You’ll probably have come across hard skills in a job spec or listing. For example, an accountant will need hard skills relating to financial reporting and bookkeeping. Whereas a UI designer may be required to have a working knowledge of the Adobe Suite.

Hard skills are typically acquired through formal education and training, including college, apprenticeships, online courses and certification programs, as well as on-the-job. 

Examples of hard skills 

Hard skills are very job-specific. The hard skills required for your role will be very different to someone who’s also in your company but from a different team.

When it comes to product design and management, there are some technical skills worth having in your toolbox. 

Prioritization 

Knowing how to prioritize tasks, and how to politely decline requests which could upset your workflow, is an extremely valuable skill. 

What’s even more beneficial is knowing how to employ objective frameworks, such as weighted scoring, to scientifically support what you decide to prioritize. 

Basic business knowledge

You don’t need a degree in business to be a product manager, but you will need to have some basic business acumen. 

How the business is performing can influence product strategies, so knowing the difference between revenues and profits and understanding budgeting, cash flow and P&L are vital hard skills to have.

Data collection 

Having the ability to obtain, extract, and analyze relevant data is a key part of the job as it allows you to keep abreast of developments, measure product effectiveness, and investigate hypotheses. 

General FAQ

What is the difference between hard skills and soft skills?
Hard skills are teachable and measurable abilities, such as coding, economic understanding, and expertise in certain software programs. In contrast, soft skills are the personal traits that make you a good employee, such as etiquette, communication, and listening. Soft skills can also be learned, to a certain extent. But more typically they are naturally-occurring.
What are some examples of hard skills?
Hard skills are the specific abilities required to do a particular job. For example, an accountant will need to know how to prepare and interpret financial statements and other accounting reports, while a software analyst will have to understand how to read (and maybe write) code.
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