By Holly Neeld, Director of Professional Development, YPAL

You are great at your job: over the years you’ve amassed tremendous experience and you know how to move projects forward and deliver results. You’re ready to move up and assume a position of leadership, but you may be surprised to learn those hard-earned technical skills may not be enough to land you the promotion you desire.

While soft skills – defined as “personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people” – aren’t new, the current generation of young professionals place more importance on them, and our employers are paying attention.

According to Forbes, “a major coalition of businesses, policy experts, trade groups, and academics are demonstrating that soft skills—specifically interpersonal skills, the ability to manage and control your emotions, communication skills, leadership, adaptability, and problem solving—are critical.”

That’s why YPAL has refreshed the learning objectives for our 2017 Fall Emerging Leaders Program to help young professionals develop key soft skills that every growing leader should possess.

YPAL’s 10th consecutive Emerging Leaders Program will commence on September 12, 2017. Over the course of the three-month program participants will focus on developing self-awareness, project management, communication within a team and presentation skills.

During each session, ELP participants will use structured exercises and assessments to develop improved awareness about themselves and others. They’ll interact with community leaders from Luckett & Farley, Leadership Louisville Center and many more to focus on each separate soft skill set including communication within a team, presentation skills and project management.

Participants can also benefit from optional one-on-one coaching sessions, and finally, they will walk away with a clear understanding of their purpose, values and strengths.

If you’re interested in applying to ELP, applications are now open on YPAL’s website. If you have questions, we encourage you to join us for Drinks & Details on August 22, where ELP alumni and facilitators will answer any questions you may have about the program.

The cost of the program is $300. Scholarships – including one scholarship for an active or veteran Service Member sponsored by Franklin Law Group– are available.

Questions? Contact me at