WISE WORDS FOR TEENS
WHAT’S YOUR ADVICE TO THIS YEAR’S CROP OF SCHOOL LEAVERS?
DARREN BUCHANAN MANAGING DIRECTOR, HAYS QUEENSLAND
Work on developing soft skills. A willingness to learn is one of the most commonly requested soft skills. Employers consider the ideal employee as one who upskills regularly, looks at what the competition is doing and keeps an eye on customer feedback. An ability to accept and adapt to change is important too. Employers want people who see change as an opportunity for growth and innovation. Interpersonal and communication skills are highly valued. It is all well and good thinking of solutions to challenges, but soft skills get lost if you don’t communicate knowledge to others.
SINEAD HOURIGAN BRISBANE DIRECTOR, ROBERT WALTERS
Although employers may show a level of interest in your post-school qualifications, it is extremely unusual for anyone to seek information about your school academic history. What they will notice was your engagement in other ways – your involvement in the local community, leadership displayed in sporting teams, engagement with others through mentoring programs and kindness to those less fortunate than yourself through charitable works. All of these will speak more in years to come of your character as a person and will go much further to determining your post-school success.
JULIE FORD SENIOR EXECUTIVE CONSULTANT, McARTHUR
Do what works for you. If you are going on to further education, then commit to it and ensure you are pursuing your strengths and passions. If you are taking a gap year, then travel or get a job – don’t waste this time. Follow your travel dreams or earn some money. If you are going into employment, get a job as soon as you can – it might not be your ”forever job” but it is a start in learning new skills and building experience. Don’t sit at home and squander this time – the longer you leave it to make decisions about your future, the more chance the decision will be made for you.
DR NERIDA HILLBERG DIRECTOR OF PSYCHOLOGY, FERRIS MANAGEMENT CONSULTANTS
I’m passionate about effective career guidance, especially to senior high school students who are mapping out their future lives. Society can tend to place such a high value on a university degree. While I don’t disagree, and I recognise that knowledge and education open doors, I believe we also need to value technical and trades roles just as highly. Looking at the upward trend in such opportunities predicted by the government, I’d advise interested school leavers to pursue a trade. Do what makes you happy, not what others expect of you.