lifestyle

8 Things Working Adults In Their 20s Regret Not Learning At University

"I wish I learnt how to manage my time better."

Cover image via Freepik (Edited by SAYS)

1. "I have no idea how to manage my finances"

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"During uni, I was so used to having my parents pay for everything - food, rent, tuition fees, and all. So when I was about to get my first paycheck, I was super excited that I could finally become financially independent.

But then, I realised I couldn't keep up with my uni lifestyle. Now that I'm paying for my own rent, bills, transportation... where got money to save after all that? I even think twice before buying a coffee these days T.T sighhh..."

- Ammar, 25

2. "No one taught me how to write an email or prep for an interview"

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"I spent over a year jumping from contract jobs to freelance jobs after graduation. I was mass sending out my CVs, but I only ever got offered short-term jobs that lasted a few months.

It wasn't until my friend sat me down and taught me how to properly write a cover letter, update my LinkedIn, and prepare for interviews that I managed to land a decent full-time job."

- Rachel, 26

3. "I wish I had better communication skills"

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"Growing up, I was always reserved. I hated doing group projects in university, especially ones that involved giving presentations and talking in public.

However, once I started work, I struggled to keep up with the unreasonable demands of clients. My manager had to call me out one day, because I was just agreeing to everything clients said without pushing back. It forced me to learn how to say no and communicate more effectively with people."

Sally, 25

4. "I could have picked up another skill in uni"

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"In uni, I had friends in other courses, and I always thought it'd be cool if I could learn another skill from them like coding, graphic design, or even a new language like Japanese. But I kept putting it off throughout university and never got to it.

Now, I'm seeing how these extra skills could have come in handy at the workplace. I even heard of a friend who's getting an extra RM1,000 allowance just for knowing Japanese. It's a shame I'm way too busy to invest time into learning a new skill now."

Ibrahim, 29

5. "I wish I learned how to think outside the box"

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"My parents always wanted me to get good grades, so from high school all the way to uni, my goal was to study hard and score well for exams. I even got a 3.9 GPA in university!

But now that I'm actually starting out my working life, most of the work I'm doing requires more creativity and problem solving. I probably only use a fraction of all the things that I've studied. >.<"

Grace, 23

6. "I feel like I could manage my time better"

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"When you're studying, you can ponteng, stay up late, rush assignments last minute. But at work, your boss isn't going to let you off the hook so easily!

You not only have to juggle between different tasks and projects, there are internal and external meetings to attend, as well as occasional training sessions. Sometimes, you don't even have time to do your work in office, so you'll have to bring it home to do."

- Fara, 25

7. "I don't know how to deal with annoying people at work"

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"If you think dealing with group mates who don't do work in university is annoying, wait 'til you reach the workplace.

I feel like work is 20% doing tasks, and 80% dealing with people. Not only do you need to keep your customers and clients happy, you have to jaga the feelings of your teammates, then have to keep a good relationship with your boss. Very tiring lah."

- Josh, 28

8. "I wish I was a little more tech-y"

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"Nowadays, everyone is talking about AI, robotics, automation... Half the time in the office, I have no clue what the developers are saying.

While we work in different departments, I wish I had become a bit more tech savvy while in university. Then at least I can be more involved in different growing areas of the business, and not be stuck just doing one thing."

- Jill, 27

While the working world may sound intimidating, as long as you prepare yourself well, there is nothing that you can't achieve!

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According to the Institute of the Future, you would have occupied between 15 to 19 different jobs across industries by the time you retire. This means that you would most likely end up working in fields you didn't even study for.

With the rise of AI and automation, having a conventional degree may not be enough to get you a job. So as students, what you can do now is to equip yourself with skills of the future, be adaptable, and keep on learning to make yourself relevant for the future of work.

Here are a few tips to make yourself hire-able for any kind of job:

  1. Always be ready to learn
    Make yourself more valuable by learning new skills. For instance, if you are in digital marketing, upgrade your skills in design and video editing as well. In fact, there are many e-learning portals and tutorial videos online, so you can always get started today!

  2. Grow your knowledge in technology
    While you don't need to know everything about AI, IoT, and coding, understanding the basic concepts will help you stay relevant and progress your career.

  3. Pick up evergreen skills
    There are certain skills that robots and machinery will never be able to replicate, like social skills, leadership capabilities, as well as critical thinking and problem solving.

Want to make sure you learn all these essential skills before you start working? Taylor's University is the best place to equip yourself with skills of the future.

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Ranked as one of the top 2% of universities in the world, Taylor's University offers a broad-based approach to education. This means students will learn life skills and emotional skills in addition to academics.

The great thing is that you can mix and match your subjects by choosing from a variety of double majors, minors, extensions, and free electives across disciplines. Imagine an engineering student taking a minor in business or psychology, or a graduate doing a double major in computer science and marketing. The possibilities are endless!

Taylor's University is also one the first universities in the world to offer a Graduate Capabilities Attainment (GCA) statement, which scores students on their future job skills

When you graduate at Taylor's University, you will receive two degree parchments, your academic degree as well as a GCA statement, which covers skills like critical thinking, communication, and entrepreneurship.

These are skills that you can bring and continue to develop throughout your career. Plus, with these qualifications, you'll definitely gain an advantage when you're looking for a job in the future.

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Want to find out more about Taylor's University and their courses? Head over to their Digital Open Day, happening every day from 9am to 10pm.

Even as you stay safe and stay home, your education journey does not need to be put on hold. From 21 March 2020 until the end of April, head over to Taylor's University Digital Open Day from the comfort of your home, and talk to counsellors and academics to find the right course for you.

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