7 Things You Learn At School That Can Help You Succeed In The Workplace

6 April, 2022

As you sit in double biology struggling with the concept of cell division, you may well wonder how this information is going to help you in the real world. You’re not going to be a botanist, right? Well, probably not, but some of the skills that the routines of school life instil in you, will undoubtedly stand you in good stead for the world of work. Here we look at some of them.

1. Working independently

Whilst in school, the majority of the work you are given is for you to complete on your own. This has taught you to research subjects, develop your own ideas, structure your arguments and reach your own conclusions.

These skills are essential in the workplace as even if you are working in a team, there will be tasks you’ll be expected to take full responsibility for.

2. Working as a team

Everyone knows that sinking feeling you get when someone is put into your project group who either doesn’t pull their weight or forces their ideas through even if they’re not the best. Working in a group at school teaches you to collaborate, understand how other people approach a task, share ideas, take on different roles and pull together to get the job done.

It’s just the same in the workplace. There are always people that are more difficult to work with than others. If you can find a way to work with everyone and help the company get the most out of them, you’ll be worth your weight in gold!

3. Following instructions

School life is peppered with rules, and unwritten instructions and expectations. From what you wear and how you wear it, to the preferred method of structuring an essay. The same goes when you’re an employee. There are standards in terms of conduct, and tried and trusted processes that the company will have developed over a number of years.

Following the rules shows that you respect the company and the work that’s gone before, and that you want to present it well.

4. Critical thinking

At school, you’re encouraged to think for yourself, and develop your own opinions after considering all the information available. You’re taught to be logical, structured and balanced. Often there can be many answers to the question that’s been set, and as long as you can justify your answer, that’s fine.

The same applies in the world of work. Being able to question why things happen and think creatively about how you can solve a problem are skills that are highly valued. Just look at Steve Jobs or Elon Musk!

5. Communication

Communication is essentially speaking and listening to aid understanding, and is a key skill both at school and in the workplace. Whereas at school, most time is spent listening and writing, at work your verbal skills may come into play more. You may be asked to attend meetings, present, write to customers, deal with complaints or negotiate with suppliers.

Being able to communicate clearly shows your employer that you understand the subject you’re dealing with and instils trust.

6. Time management

As a student, you have a structured timetable, as well as deadlines to meet, assignment dates to work to and revision schedules to follow. Time is limited and to make the most of what you have, you need to be organised and work efficiently.

Having good time management skills shows your employer that you know how to prioritise the time-critical and important pieces of work over others, and gives them confidence that deadlines won’t be missed.

7. Resilience

During your time at school, you’ll undoubtedly have received a disappointing result somewhere along the line. Learning to take stock of what went wrong and being able to pick yourself up from that setback are essential skills to have.

At work, not every project goes to plan either. Not every product launch can result in a bestseller. Having the resilience to move forward and the growth mindset to feed what you’ve learned back into the process, however, is very much valued. If you can show your employer that you learn from mistakes, they know it will inevitably improve the chances of success in the future.

Feeling confident in your skillset?

I hope this summary of skills that you’ve unwittingly developed whilst at school gives you confidence. Many skills you’ve learned are definitely transferable to the world of work whether you become a botanist or a journalist. If, however, you feel like you need a boost in certain areas, why not sign up for free to Your Game Plan? It includes industry-recognised courses that will develop your skillset to give you the competitive edge you need to stand out from the competition!

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