Being successful looks different to everyone. It comes in all shapes and sizes, but one thing that most people can agree on is that it includes feeling content and secure. One of the ways to offer this security is by opening as many doors to opportunity as possible by learning valuable life skills.
So, how will the next generation be able to do that? While trends come and go, and the economy and culture can change, there are some skills that every person will need to have to get ahead.
1. Critical thinking
Being able to think for yourself is a key skill at a time where the concept of career and the workplace is changing. Critical thinking is clearly self-directed and self-disciplined, so you will need to be able to think for yourself in a realistic and meaningful way.
“Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think.” – Albert Einstein
This generation is going to need to go beyond taking notes and remembering information for important exams. They will need education teaching them to think for themselves and solve problems in real-time. Developing this ability early on will only stand to benefit today’s students and tomorrow’s leaders.
Navigating emerging technologies is something most students and professionals need to do in their daily lives. While this can ultimately make life easier, it often comes with new circumstances. A fine example of this is how several companies use modern technology to further their global presence. This results in top-tier companies encouraging their employees to work remotely and take full advantage of the Digital Age.
Working directly with an employee who lives in a different time zone could be just one of many adjustments the next generation will experience in their regular work culture. The next generations will need to be able to adapt or the could be left behind.
3. Excellent communication skills
Good communication skills are important, both in person and online. The next generation is going to need to excel in these and every now and again this will include having to lead the conversation. As mentioned above, there might be special circumstances to navigate, such as key members of a team who live in different locations.
This is only one of the many scenarios that might mean people will need to be multifaceted and learn how to communicate using new mediums. And with most workplaces using tools like Slack or Skype to communicate within their teams, written communication is a major point. Reading comprehension and writing skills have become crucial skills for the modern student and employee.
4. Cultural understanding
A deeper cultural understanding can lead to more positive interactions, better collaboration, and truly diverse conversations. Given that Generation Z is often stated as one of the most diverse generations to date, there will be a wider variety of voices and perspectives in the future workplace.
Cultural understanding has been a key part of progress in most cultures. With international business, an important aspect of modern life, large companies in top industries are embracing and teaching this to their employees. Companies like Google, Novartis, and Coca-Cola are well-known for their diversity initiatives.
Since companies like these are often looked to as tastemakers, it’s clear that by the time the next few generations are entering the workforce, this concept will be commonplace within most companies in the relevant industries.
5. Initiative and drive
While competition is a normal part of achieving success in life, the world is more connected now than ever so many will be competing on a much more global stage than previous generations might have. You have to consider the fact that this will mean that students will need to strive to compete with students from their own country along with several others.
Having the initiative and drive to compete will be an important element in navigating certain aspects of life, especially when it comes to career and education opportunities.