6 Vital Career Skills You Won’t Learn in College

You can learn a lot in college, but you may not come away with all the skills you need to succeed in the world of work. We’ve come up with six real world skills you need to make sure you develop before you graduate.

Negotiate effectively

These skills aren’t usually taught in colleges or in business courses. Effective negotiation and bargaining skills are always valuable and will serve you well both at work and in your personal interactions.

Writing concisely

Many people take business writing courses and learn how to write in a formal and professional tone. This is an excellent skill that will serve you well in the working world. What’s often left out of these courses is how to make your point quickly and effectively. Busy professionals simply don’t have the time to read a thesis, so distil your ideas down to their essential components before presenting them to your supervisor or colleagues.

Networking strategically

Many people find it easy to meet lots of new people in college and develop a social network, without much effort. Did you learn how to leverage that into career success, though, or just to become as popular as possible? It’s important to seek out significant people in your field of interest and maintain those relationships.

Interacting humbly

Getting past your emotional hang-ups and learning to operate sincerely while demonstrating appreciation for others will help your career flourish. The ability to sincerely express appreciation and ask for forgiveness can help you avoid being mired in conflict and mend a relationship.


You can easily complete an assignment a day before the deadline through a frantic haze of coffee following an all-nighter. The real world doesn’t work like this – you can’t sustain yourself through retirement with this sort of work ethic. Furthermore, you need to deal with disappointment where you may spend months fighting and clawing to accomplish a goal.

Handling feedback well

Feedback isn’t handled well in the college atmosphere. You’ll just get a grade that tells you how you fared. The real world doesn’t have grades – it has feedbacks, where you have a talk with your boss about your performance. They discuss what you did well and what you could do better. You’ll need to learn to accept harsh criticism; it’s an entirely normal part of existing in the real world of work.

These skills might not be taught in college, but if you can hone in on them how, they’ll set you up for the rest of your career path.



Source: Luke MacGregor/Reuters (image)