Five skills for Generation Y to be successful in the future- Part I

Key takeaways:

  • people skill is essential to success;
  • social media often burns too much time from our lives;
  • being a happy person is the key to a successful career and a happy life.

After teaching in a world top 50 university for 19 years, I have seen students growing into young industry leaders but I have also seen students growing into an adult who has a job and wondering why not a better job or a better life.

I don’t plan to define ‘success’ here. For now, let’s take ‘success’ as being able to perform above your peers at your workplace and live a happy life. Let’s ignore how much money you make for now when we look at ‘success’.

Fun dress-up day for the final project presentation in my classroom (Class 2017)

What distinguishing those more ‘successful’ graduates from the others is not much. It all boils down to one question: what did you learn from your university life? Here are five top skills that Gen Y need in order to be successful in the industry:

  1. Learn to work well with people: this is the most important skill one should learn in the university life and this skill determines how ‘high’ you can climb the corporate ladder. Those who perform way better than their peers often are able to work well with people, all sorts of people, especially difficult people.
  2. Stay focused on your career goal, not on social media: most people spend too much time watching what other people do on social media and become emotional after spending one hour on Facebook or Instagram. Although you may not have the intention to compare your life with others, subconsciously social media make you feel so and this doesn’t make your life better. Try to spend that one hour to improve yourself and stay focused on your career; this also improves your confidence and personal life.
  3. Enjoy life more and have fun: those who perform better than peers also enjoy lives more than peers. Working shouldn’t be the sole focus of one’s life. Instead, it should be a part of your life because you don’t want to ‘work to live’. Have a focus after your working hours and enjoy life more. Scientific research showed that people who have hobbies or are in social clubs after work are happier in their lives because they tend to have a stronger social bonding and better focus in their after-work lives. Happy people will perform better at the workplace and this is always the case!

Dr. C. Richard Wu @

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