For those starting their first job or considering university, we have a prepared a useful collection of necessary skills for you: collated by the scholars themselves! So take a leaf or two from the big collection here, and live that greener life!
Scholars know best that a good education is just a foundation. To remain relevant and keep their competitive edge, constant improvement is a must.
To keep you in the know, we asked our scholars what they considered essential skills for those entering the workforce. Unsurprisingly, the list comprises mainly “soft skills”, personal characteristics that promote situational awareness and enhance an individual's ability to get a job done.
Read on to find out what skills are necessary to succeed tomorrow, and why.
“I believe there are three important soft skills that would serve an individual well in almost any position or job they are in. Firstly, innovativeness, the ability to find more efficient and effective ways to complete processes. Secondly, resourcefulness. Being resourceful will help an individual adapt to dynamic and evolving situations. Lastly, self-awareness. I believe that as we become better aware of our own limits, strengths and weaknesses can we then better improve our current state.”
- Martin Millar, SAF Merit Scholar 2015
“I believe that open-mindedness and adaptability are essential soft skills that young people should have. The world is constantly evolving with new technologies, new concepts, and new products. To be adaptable is to be able to not discriminate new technologies or concepts and infuse it with status quo. That synergy is what makes the difference between an innovator and someone who is just cruising through life. I would like to quote my professor from university, ‘Why be mediocre, when you can aim for greater heights and be extraordinary?’”
- Tyler Lee, CAAS Scholar
“Adaptability is an essential soft skill. One should be able to adapt to changing work environment as well as job demands. The importance of adaptability is illustrated by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on both our personal lives and work, where many of us were required to work from home during the circuit breaker period, or even take on a different job scope.”
- Tan Jing Ying, BCA Local Undergraduate Scholar
“People coming into the workforce need to understand that it is not possible to do things alone. Learning to work collectively towards a common purpose as opposed to a self-serving one is easier said than done. This entails knowing when is the right time to step up to lead or to step back and support the team.”
- Julian Cheng, URA Overseas Scholar
“You should look at developing your communication skills. Not only through the written word, but the verbal medium as well. People, and especially bosses, have many things on their plate. So the idea is to communicate effectively, and capture the essence of what you wish to convey as succinctly as possible.”
- Nicholas Oh, MND EDGE Scholar
“I feel that an essential soft skill for young people coming into the workforce would be a growth mindset. Learning doesn’t stop after graduation. As the youngest in the workplace, take the opportunity to ask, learn and be open. Be humble, listen and learn from the experience of your colleagues, these are often more valuable than the knowledge you have learnt at school.”
- Eileen Tay, IRAS Scholar
“For me, I find it useful practice to also take stock of my priorities from time to time, and to re-assess what I am ascribing value to.”
- Elliot Yeo, MAS Scholar
“Willingness to learn is an essential soft skill. It doesn’t matter what you learn in school, as long as you’re willing to grow and learn what is needed for your job.”
- Jansen Jarret, DSTA Scholar
“Transdisciplinary Thinking! We are not bound by the disciplines we come from. I would encourage young people coming into the workforce to continuously embrace new ways of thinking, new methodologies, and consider inculcating these fresh perspectives into daily life, including work. There is Science in Art and Art in Science; the Art of Science and the Science of Art, and so forth.”
- Kelsie Tan, SSG-WSG Joint Undergraduate Scholar
“Be agile. You will not truly know something is not for you until you try it. Agility will make you indispensable because you will be able to internalise and understand concepts in the ever so fast-moving world of finance.”
- Mak Wai Chong, GIC Scholar
“Be adaptable. Recognize that technology is constantly evolving and having agility to adapt to the changing landscape is always useful.”
- Leow Gin Ee, CSIT Scholar
“Communication is absolutely vital. Learning how to empathise with others and their perspectives, communicate your interests while understanding theirs, putting forth a convincing case, and finding ways to fulfil both your objectives are important.”
- Brandon Chia, EDB Scholar