Are you in your final year at school and thinking about the next steps that you will take? Maybe you’re going to college or university, or maybe you’re stepping into your first professional workplace environment. It can be daunting we know. You might be worrying about being the youngest in the office or not having a lot of experience, but don’t worry you do have something that can help you… Your skills. Now you may not think that you have acquired a lot of skills from being at school, but we can prove you wrong! Think about your experiences in school and the type of situations that you were put into. Problem solving, working in teams, doing work with a time limit and so on. These are all skills and qualities that can be taken into the workplace. And even better if you have participated in societies or clubs, as extracurricular activities’ also boost your skill set!
What employers look for is someone that shows discipline and commitment. And to show these types of qualities may mean that you do different things. For example, participating in the Duke of Edinburgh which can provide you with exposure to volunteering and team building skills. The likes of being a Prefect or Head Boy/Girl may also help develop management and leadership skills. Getting involved in Young Enterprise Scotland can also help you get into a more business like frame of mind, where you have to actually think about what it would be like to set up a business and what it takes to be successful. All these experiences are extremely valuable but what about if you like to be creative? Then yes that too can be used as a skill within the workplace, as you will find that every organisation needs someone who can look at situations from different perspectives. Maybe even your creativity will help you stumble upon a career? A Designer, digital marketer, stylist, who knows. But all these little things can help build the bigger picture.
On the other hand you have the things that you do outwith school time. Perhaps you have a part-time job, working in a shop or doing that paper round? Not only are you showing that you are independent and committed but you can develop people skills. Working part-time can be a great way to meet people that you normally wouldn't, and if you've been in the same friend group throughout school, then theres nothing more beneficial than meeting other people who can help you learn. Along with these benefits working can get you out of your comfort zone and help you deal with different situations, whether that be perfecting your customer service or working to meet a company target.
Not only will all these activities help you develop your skills for the future but they can help you to gain emotional intelligence. Now you might be asking what is emotional intelligence, or maybe you even know a little bit about it. It is the development of knowing how to understand other people and deal with them accordingly. Emotional Intelligence is highly sought after by employers and if you can show that you can work with people under different circumstances then you're on your way to success. It can be developed by group activities, part-time work and even volunteering. Volunteering is especially beneficial and can help you in many ways as we explored the topic in one of our previous blogs.
If you think that possibly you would like more help with developing your skill set then we have a youth development programme that can help school leavers improve their skills. We focus on team development, customer service, presentation skills and lots more! Why don't you get in contact with us if you need some advice? We would love to help!
And remember everything that you do will help shape who you are and what you do, and you will end up going in the right direction if you put your mind to it.
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