Your college may have taught you a lot about mathematical formulas, marketing definitions, or coding your very own application. However, when you are out there in the real world after graduation, you will find that employers aren’t interested in the book-ish definitions you knew (or once knew), your long list of A+’s, or how good you are with your marketing concepts and theories.
So, what do they want?
Don’t get me wrong, knowledge in your field is very important. But there are a few other valuable skills that are essential for survival in the increasingly competitive and monstrous environment out there in the real world.
The following skills are a “must-have” for all graduates in order to penetrate the busy job market and make a sound and solid place in it.
1) Interpersonal Skills: Don’t give anyone the, “Uh, I’m an introvert and I am not a very social person”. Regardless of what personality type you are, you need to be able to have decent one-to-one conversations with random people – with full confidence! You will come across these situations throughout your professional life, starting from the moment you apply for a job and attend to an interview, to the time you go high up in an organization and have a chat with key stake-holders.
2) Networking Skills: Now, you may be thinking that interpersonal skills and networking skills are pretty much the same, and in many ways, they are. However, while interpersonal skills will be required for anyone who may or may not be of interest to you, networking skills are focused on the “right people” with the “right connections”. First, you need to be able to recognize these people whoare the key tomany golden opportunities. Next, you need to know how to interact with them in a professional manner so that you aren’t the only one interested in them and their professional achievements.
3) Team Management Skills: We all hated group projects, but part of the reason why we all had to deal with them is because the professors knew how well they simulate real world situations. Team building, team management, or group-working skills are highly important. Many panel interviews call for group interviews to determine how candidates work with each other and test their team-management skills. Even in the real world you have to learn how to deal with various types of people and personalities and your success (or the company’s) could be dependent on how well you are able to work with them.
4) Basic IT Skills: For some this may be a piece of cake. However, for the older generations or the less-privileged, it could be quite challenging. Proficiency in using the computer, especially Microsoft Office and the internet, are very important for most, if not all, job nowadays. Online researching skills also come in very handy in professional life, especially in the field of marketing. Even the use of social networks could be of use to you if you are going to be a future marketer.
5) Time Management Skills: If you haven’t learnt this already in college, you are going to have a really tough time in the real world! Part of being a mature adult means to know exactly what you should be doing at what time. It’s not an easy task, even for the top-most superiors in an organization! However, time management skills are critical to success in your professional life. It goes without saying that some of the best employees of an organization are the ones who possess exceptional planning, prioritizing, and goal-seeking and attaining skills which all branch from learning one thing: time management.
Sadie Douse is teacher and a consultant. She teaches students in a High School and offer online consultancy to students facing difficulties with their essay writing at Essay Corp. In the spare time she writes blogs for different sites.