7 New Skills College Students Must Acquire To Prepare For The Changing Workplace

It is difficult for any educator to prepare a college student for a world that does not exist yet. The world is constantly changing. What hard skills may be in demand now could become obsolete after a few years. Even the best college consultants may find this a challenge.

According to this recent report, CEOs, HR managers and recruiters are more interested in an applicant’s set of soft skills rather than their technical expertise. Here is a list of some of the most critical skills college students should have to improve their chances of getting employed after graduation.

1. Problem Solving

Complex problems are everywhere. As society and technology continue to develop, it becomes more important for employers to find applicants who are capable of solving real-world problems.

Being able to work independently with minimal supervision is also a highly desirable skill. It shows employers that the individual is willing to take initiative, take risks and learn from one’s mistakes. The goal is to find solutions that can help the business become more efficient and economical.

2. Creativity

With technology all around, people are constantly receiving stimulation. Everyone has the potential of being both a producer and a consumer of information. There are many ways to solve a problem. Having a high level of creativity allows people to use their imagination and think of creative ways of solving problems.

3. Critical thinking

Tasks that require a lot of cognitive and linear thinking are common in a number of industries. College students who are interested in working in these industries will need to develop their analytical skills to increase their chances of getting hired.

For employers, this particular skill involves having the ability to compare and evaluate information. Applicants must also show an ability to apply that lessons they have learned with minimal supervision.

Analytical thinkers can see the situation from many perspectives. They don’t just memorize information; rather, they understand how it fits in with other data. Such individuals are skilled in conceptualizing, organizing, classifying and sorting out the information.

4. Collaboration

Collaboration is no longer limited to physically working with people who are in the same space. Development of the Internet and technology presents people with more options of working together.

Millennials are seen as more social compared to previous generations. The digital age has offered them more ways of communicating and connecting with others. As businesses are now expanding their reach to other countries around the world, it has become more important for future graduates to learn how to utilize this technology to communicate and work with other people virtually.

5. Communication

The ability to communicate is no longer limited to face-to-face interactions or making phone calls. With more technological advancements, the younger generation of workers are expected to learn how to use alternative methods of communication including sending texts and emails, conducting video calls, and even writing blog posts online.

6. Attention

Distractions can come in many forms. As a result, more and more people are struggling to manage their time and set priorities. Employers want to see applicants who can show that they can stick to a project from start to finish.

For college students and recent graduates, this can be done by completing side projects. Even small projects can show your potential in focusing your attention and efforts on a single project. Seeing that a project is completed also demonstrates your ability to be responsible.

7. Grit

For many employers, the ability to stick it out even when faced with a lot of challenges is a key trait. A lot of entrepreneurs see the inability to move past obstacles as one of the major issues with millennial applicants. Employers want people who can remain calm, work under pressure and change directions when needed.

This concludes our list of highly desirable traits for college students. Students are advised to seek take advantage of consultation services in their respective schools to learn more about the changing market. Take note that this list of soft skills is also applicable to entry-level applicants and graduate students as well. Consulting services for graduate school students are also available to help prepare them for the workforce.

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