What Do You Need? Life Skills! When Do You Need Them? Now!

Updated: Jul 17, 2021

What are life skills?

Life skills are like the building blocks you learn to apply to real-world problems and situations. They are also considered soft skills, and they help you find practical solutions to these problems at school, the workplace, and in other areas of life. Research has found that having life skills early on in life can promote success in education and the workplace---so the sooner you learn, the better.


If you are a college student, you may think that once you've graduated, your degree should be enough to land you that new entry-level position. Though your credentials indeed hold some weight, employers are looking for candidates with life skills, too. In fact, a survey done in 2013 by Hart and Associates found that 3 in 4 companies believe that college must spend more time developing life skills such as:

· Critical thinking

· Written and oral communication

· Complex problem-solving

· Applied knowledge in a real-world setting

So you can be an excellent student, but still struggle to find a job if your prospective employer detects that you have little to no life skills.


What skills do most employers look for?

Employers look for candidates with the following.....

· Time management skills: How well are you with managing your time? Can you effectively stick with a schedule, prioritize items on your to-do list, and do you have a contingency plan when there is a setback? Displaying time management skills is essential in college and the workplace.

· Teamwork: Collaboration is another skill that employers want. Whether you intend to join the workforce or be an entrepreneur, you must be able to listen, contribute, and work in a team effectively.

· Self-management: Employers want employees who can self-manage their time and duties and hold themselves accountable for their tasks. Can you solve problems on your own?

· Adaptability: Being able to adapt to challenges in the workplace is another essential life skill employers seek. Unexpected situations can occur almost daily, and adapting to change is a quality many must acquire.

· Communication and interpersonal skills: This skill describes broadly how to transfer and receive messages to people through writing or verbally.

· Creative and critical thinking: Problem-solvers think about the different and unusual ways to find solutions or generate ideas.

· Decision-making and problem-solving: To understand problems, find their solutions and take action on them, you'll need to develop and use these skills.

· Assertiveness and self-control: It takes a lot of skill to stand up for yourself and other people while remaining calm when facing provocation.

· Resilience and coping with problems: This life skill teaches you how to recover from setbacks and treat them as learning opportunities.

· Self-awareness and empathy: These two are vital to emotional intelligence and describe how you understand yourself and how you feel for other people as if their experiences were your own.


Now that you know the importance of having life skills, here are some ways to help boost your performance at school or work.....

· Learn interpersonal skills: Learning how to communicate effectively, negotiate, and have meaningful interactions each day will assist you in advancing in your professional and personal life. When you are communicating with other people, practice listening and process what they have said before responding. It shows the person you are communicating with that you are actively listening to them.

· Learn self-awareness: When you are communicating with someone, take note of their body language and yours. Are you welcoming with your stance or stiff? You can also ask for feedback from your boss or professors on your performance and the best way to improve.

· Never stop learning: Every great leader will tell you that the road to success is constantly learning and developing your skills. Choose the people around you wisely so you can learn from them and grow in your personal and professional life.

· Understand your path: We follow a certain path since birth with our own stories to tell. If you tell your story to someone, can you clarify to them you have followed a passion or interest of yours to get to where you are at that moment? Do you know your path moving forward?

· Have ambition: Ambition means you have set goals to get stronger and smarter throughout your life. Good employers are looking for ambitious people, whether moving up the corporate ladder or starting your own business in the future.

· Think independently: Not all managers are looking for independent thinkers, but a strong manager will look for someone who has their ideas and understands the benefits of brainstorming.

Be proactive: Someone who's proactive won't wait for someone to tell them what to do. They jump right in and take action when they see a way they can help a situation. Managers are always looking to hire employees who are proactive and can find ways to improve the performance of a job.


So here's the bottom line.....

Life skills are essential for the success of your professional and personal life. They will help you display critical thinking abilities and communicate with everyone around you effectively. Why do you have to know how to do both? Employers want you to understand how to solve problems with other employees who have different views than you. In fact, 91% of employers believe you need this skill!

Our mission here at Rising Adults Academy.....

As individuals, we can positively affect the world and the people around us if we develop our life skills. Rising Adults Academy aims to promote that development by offering access to life skills courses that won't break the banks of emerging adults. When students complete any course at Rising Adults Academy, they receive a certificate. They can add this achievement to their resume to show employers they have basic knowledge of the common skills needed to excel and thrive in the workplace. Interested in taking a course or more? Enrollment opens in August of 2021, with five courses available for registration. More courses will be added throughout the year, so stay tuned!


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