Beyond Coding- AI And Soft Skills For The Modern AI Developer 

AI and Soft Skills For Modern AI Developer

Businesses are aware of the capabilities of AI, yet they also recognize its limitations, particularly in areas where human-exclusive attributes, known as soft skills, reign supreme. While technical prowess is essential for AI professionals to excel, the cultivation of soft skills can significantly propel their career trajectories. 

Organizations need people who can help them move forward in ways that empower their workforce, along with technical expertise. That’s where AI and soft skills go hand in hand. Well, this comes by putting oneself into practice and dealing with complex situations at the workplace. Let’s explore all the aspects – why we need it, type, and how getting AI certifications and soft skills can make one a well-rounded AI professional. 

Why Do You Need Soft Skills in AI Age? 

As AI has profoundly changed how we work, it also highlights the need for adaptability, which has become the top skill of the moment. A 2023 LinkedIn report highlights a global skills gap, with employers emphasizing the need for soft skills like communication, collaboration, and problem-solving across various industries, including IT and AI.  

AI development and deployment is already a complex process that requires collaboration, communication, interpersonal skills, and strategic thinking. We cannot think of AI without human intervention at this point.  

According to LinkedIn VP, Aneesh Raman, “people-to-people collaboration is going to come into the center more for company growth. For leaders, you’ve got to start with communicating, compassionately, and empathetically with your teams.”  

To understand this clearly, here’s a Project Phoenix case study highlighting the growing importance of soft skills. 

Project Phoenix – Soft Skills Soar in for Successful Project Completion 

Project Phoenix is a self-driving car initiative by Nova Motors in 2022. The major car manufacturer assembled a team of experts and AI engineers for the self-driving car initiative. Despite the technical prowess, they had significant issues, such as the technical team struggling to communicate effectively, which added to the project delays.   

Moreover, a lack of empathy and understanding amongst the technical team led to design errors in the self-driving car and the passenger comfort is compromised. Recognizing the need for efficiency and effective communication, Nova Motors implemented a soft skill development program to build an effective AI team. The program focused on the following: 

  • Effective Communication: Participants honed their ability to express ideas clearly and concisely, both verbally and in writing. They learned how to present their ideas persuasively while creating a space where everyone felt encouraged to contribute diverse viewpoints. 
  • Collaborative Teamwork: Through collaboration, team members developed effective and constructive feedback skills. This fostered mutual respect for diverse perspectives, leading to a positive and productive work environment. 
  • User-Centric Design: With a focus on empathy for self-driving car users, the program explored ethical concerns and passenger comfort. The team researched ways to create a positive experience, considering potential anxieties passengers might face. This approach helped AI engineers and other members design a user-centric and comfortable self-driving car. 

The Results- 

The results were impressive! With a prime focus on AI and soft skills, Project Phoenix achieved significant progress. Soft skills and AI expertise helped develop a user-centric self-driving car prototype that garnered positive feedback on prioritizing passenger experience. 

Project Phoenix sheds light on the need for soft skills like communication, collaboration, and empathy amongst the team members. It shows how businesses with even the most brilliant teams can stall without social skills. By investing in AI and soft skills programs, Nova Motors unlocked the true potential of AI turning Project Phoenix into a massive success. 

Soft Skills AI Professionals Need 

AI and soft skills seem to go hand in hand, where working effectively needs strategic thinking. It’s not what you know but how you apply it to bring contextually accurate outcomes. Here are some soft skills that AI professionals will need to excel in their careers. 


Communication is the king in business, even in this AI age. 74% of hiring managers say, it’s essential to look for strong communication skills in potential employees.    

With a growing hybrid and remote work culture, teams must communicate across channels beyond geographical boundaries. Communication skills for AI professionals not only help connect and collaborate but also motivate and inspire people.   

To improve your communication, begin with active listening and understanding your audience’s needs. Explain complex technical jargon in simple terms that are crisp and easy on the mind. Participate in meetings and events and maintain your visibility. Also, look for soft skills training in AI certifications while upskilling. 


Adaptability, being the need of the hour, is a must-have skill for everyone. Adaptability is the key if you want to present yourself for leadership positions and thrive in this AI-driven job market. It doesn’t come naturally, but by preparing oneself, which requires continuous learning, one can stay ahead.   

Moreover, having adaptable employees who can swiftly switch from one technology to another helps businesses speed up their operations. To be adaptable, embrace change, and cultivate a curious mindset. Always seek feedback, find ways to do things differently, reflect on the past, and learn from your experiences. Keep abreast of the latest technologies to navigate the change quickly. 


Accountability is a skill that shows your commitment to work. It develops the feeling of competency and thereby improves performance and productivity. For businesses, accountability helps achieve organizational goals, increasing the likelihood of success and improving the work environment.   

As an AI professional, you must take ownership of your tasks and avoid blaming others. It shows your reliability and realizing your responsibility towards work; you must set clear, realistic, doable goals that can be converted to concrete results. Avoid procrastination and develop time management to set your priorities right.  

Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 

Critical thinking and problem-solving go hand in hand, and a curious and open mindset is required. It helps employees evaluate situations in advance, gather required information, and ultimately make informed decisions. Critical thinking for AI developers teaches a vital skill – risk management where professionals can develop innovative strategies.  

Start questioning information, assumptions, and conclusions to analyze problems. Practice active listening and welcome different perspectives to broaden your understanding and refine data. It will help you think out of the box, approach a problem from different angles, and improve decision-making.  

Empathy/Emotional Intelligence 

Empathy or emotional intelligence benefits all. As an AI professional, empathy allows you to act responsibly and ethically when considering various stakeholders’ perspectives. It also helps in fast conflict resolution when you understand emotions, as you can easily navigate disagreements and find common ground.  

Self-awareness is the first step towards developing empathy or emotional intelligence. Understanding yourself, what triggers you, and your biases will make you more attuned to your thoughts. Knowing yourself will help you manage your own emotions and find balance. Then, moving to active listening, understanding their issues, constructive feedback, and putting yourself in their shoes will make you empathetic.   

AI Project Management 

AI project management skills are essential for an AI professional. It allows project managers to focus on strategy development and brainstorming. Leaving routine tasks to automation and analyzing the current workload using AI results in increased efficiency, better resource optimization, and predictive analysis.  

Develop the skill through AI certification and learn AI tools and technologies. Familiarize yourself with fundamentals and data analysis. Learn about project management and AI algorithms and how they can be used in the real world. Once you have the required knowledge, start practicing the tools by volunteering in projects. Ask for feedback, and seek mentorship and guidance. Know your areas of strength and weakness, trends, best practices, and emerging technologies.  

Business Acumen 

Business acumen is another skill indicating your ability to learn and apply AI to streamline operations and strategy and facilitate decision-making. Leadership, strategic approach, financial acumen, problem-solving, brilliant communication, and out-of-the-box thinking make for business acumen. It can help organizations in many ways and make you stand apart from competitors with your work volume.  

Be proactive and start learning about different business functions to understand how to achieve common goals. Stay updated with industry trends and know the financial metrics through balance sheets, income statements, and cash flows.   

Gain cross-functional experience to have a holistic view of the company’s work, seek mentorship, and take a leadership role. Embrace continuous learning and practice in the real world. 

Become A Well-Rounded AI Professional 

Technical skills alone won’t guarantee success; you can become a well-rounded AI professional by honing soft skills. Cultivate these qualities, or you can enroll in AI certifications with soft skills that help you gain technical prowess and develop soft skills.  

Ready to embark on your AI journey?  

Explore our certifications!