Skills every student should have

by | 29.02.24

Thinking about a future career is something most students begin to do as early as the year before they are due to finish their studies. But even students who aren’t sure what they want to do for a living can still work on developing certain skills that will come in handy, no matter what they do. I’ve hand-picked the top 10 soft skills that every student needs to develop a secure future career success, here they are:


Everything starts with great communication and it’s one of the top soft skills required in any professional setting. Great communication skills are vital for anyone trying to get a job or fit into a professional environment. Concentrate on your verbal communication, listening skills, written communication and your body language.

Time Management

We all need this skill, not just in our professional life but also in our personal life as well. Being able to manage your time smartly is a sure way to make the most of your day and reach your goals easily. As a student you definitely need good time management skills otherwise you will definitely struggle with your exams.


Thinking outside of the box, being innovative and striving to make a creative difference are all valued skills in the workplace. Your future employers will want to see you make a contribution and do more than what is officially asked of you. Luckily College and University are the perfect places to practice creativity and learn how to express and make best use of your ideas.


Yes teamwork really matters in any job you go on to do. Learning to work with others and make your contribution to a team is extremely valuable so you need to learn this skill. Being able to collaborate with others is to appreciate that it takes two to tango, but if you do your part the other person will most likely follow suit.

Problem Solving

Some people think that you either know how to solve a problem or you don’t. but this is far from true. Problem solving skills are there to help us learn how to work our way around an issue and find a solution. Instead of giving up, learn how to gradually break down a problem and come up with the best solution.

Emotional Intelligence

Are you aware of your emotions? Can you recognise them, manage them and process them the right way? Your emotions heavily influence who you are, how you act and consequently how you work and interact with your colleagues. Gaining emotional intelligence will help you be self aware, confident and able to empathise with others.


Being proactive means being a person who’s ready to take initiative. Every team needs someone who’s going to push forward without being asked to, motivate others and bring the right kind of energy to the table. Doing things on your own initiative is highly appreciated by employers so start practicing this skill asap. Take charge of team projects in College or University, organise student events and be ready to step into important roles and opportunities.

Stress Management

Stress is something most people are familiar with but its not something everyone knows how to manage. When stressful times come many people struggle to maintain a routine, stay productive and keep achieving goals. Stress management is thus essential whilst you are at College or University as well as after. It takes active work to reduce stress and learn how to channel it best.


Are you one of those people who only see one way a situation can go down? Do you refuse to accept that things sometimes simply don’t go the way you planned? If so you need to work hard to become more flexible or you’ll find it very hard to fit into a professional team. Being flexible in the workplace means adapting to changing circumstances.

Conflict Resolution

Conflict resolution is a skill you will really have to develop before you enter the workplace. No matter how compatible or collaborative your future team is there’s bound to be some conflict. Learning how to address disagreements constructively and how to find common ground is a skill that you simply have to practice.

Developing essential skills whilst you are in education is easier than it may seem. All you need to do is be aware of the importance of these skills and try to engage in activities that will help you develop and strengthen them.

Good Luck

Angela Burton