How a Future-Focused MBA Can Close the “Soft Skills” Gap

How a Future-Focused MBA Can Close the “Soft Skills” Gap


In a wide-ranging interview with Wired, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner recently shared some important and potentially counterintuitive insights about the future of work. Here’s what he had to say:

Using “skills gap analytics,” LinkedIn is working to pinpoint the fastest growing job types in a given area, as well as the skills employers need to fill those jobs. The results are fascinating — and if you guessed the #1 skills gap in the U.S. is “coding,” you’re in for a surprise.


While coding is an important skill for many jobs in areas like computing, mobile development, and AI, Weiner says LinkedIn metrics reveal a different skills gap in the U.S. job market. These are what as known as “soft skills,” including “written communication, oral communication, team building, people leadership, and collaboration.”

These sorts of people skills aren’t important for every career. But for senior roles in management, business, or sales development, soft skills are essential and in demand.

These skills aren’t always easy to learn, but they can be taught. Furthermore, these skills will be difficult or even impossible to replace, no matter how good AI replaces other types of work. As Weiner concludes:

“The good news comes on two fronts with regard to the [soft skills] gap. The first is that for as powerful as AI will ultimately become and is becoming, we’re still a ways away from computers being able to replicate and replace human interaction and human touch. So there’s wonderful incentive for people to develop these skills because those jobs are going to be more stable for a longer period of time. We’re also capable of closing these gaps now, today.

The Global MBA offered by Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia — one of the world’s top 100 business schools — is the next generation digital MBA degree now  available on Coursera. It’s flexible, affordable, 100% online, and built to develop the soft skills you need to lead the future-focused businesses.

The  Global MBA has been developed around six future-focussed capabilities including Strategising, Leading, Analysing, Influencing, Adapting, and Problem Solving Each specialisation aims to develop a bundle of soft skills that will help professionals future-proof themselves


  • Leading: The future of work is about leveraging technology and talent that transforms existing ways of doing business. Students learn to optimise workplace relationships and organisational structures, and how to tell the story in painting the future.
  • Influencing: Students learn to understand the importance of power and politics in shaping the decision-making process and the art of communication and negotiation in bringing about change.
  • Strategising: Disruptive new technologies compel organisations to adapt and respond quickly. Students learn how to develop workplace strategies that enhance technology and people to build sustainable platforms and ecosystems.
  • Adapting: Changes in technology, diversity and culture are transforming more than just jobs. They are transforming the meaning and value of work and the motivations to work. Students learn to frame their personal and professional value proposition and navigate change with confidence and purpose.
  • Analysing: Data plays a central role in decision making and envisioning futures. Numeracy and financial literacy form the foundations of analytical skills. Students learn how to synthesise and critically analyse information in producing strategic insights.
  • Problem Solving: This capstone specialisation focuses on developing a student’s problem solving skills in an applied way. They’ll work on real-world, applied projects that draw on their ability to research, analyse, visualise and generate insights. Customise problem solving tools from best practice frameworks and methodologies as they ideate and develop a solution coached by faculty and industry partners.


It’s not just the curriculum that’s designed to develop your soft skills: Macquarie Global MBA students participate in team learning projects with students, academics, and business leaders from around the world. These live learning experiences help you hone your people skills.


Jeff Weiner says that LinkedIn is working to help businesses “develop the right workforce strategies… for the jobs that are and will be, and not just the jobs that once were.” That same future-focused ethos fuels Macquarie University’s Global MBA program, which develops all of the skills —soft skills included — that professionals need to lead creative and innovative teams


Early deadline to apply for Macquarie University’s Global MBA is 1 March, 2019, and the final deadline is 8 April, 2019. Get started on your application today.