Millennials of today are going to be the leaders of tomorrow. They will take not just their domain knowledge but also their values into boardrooms. Thus, it is important that some values are inculcated in students early on so that they can make good decisions not only at the workplace, but also in life in general.
One allegation against this generation is that they are always in a rush. This might be due to the influence of digital media, growing competition and a fast lifestyle. In such a scenario, it is all the more important for them to possess the right skills to succeed.
Communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity are commonly referred to as the 21st-century skills. It is essential that the curriculum is designed such that it allows group activities, where learners get a chance to articulate their thoughts.
They should also have ample opportunities to work on complex projects, which will help them become architects of their knowledge instead of relying on study materials alone. This could help them try out unconventional and creative ways of approaching a problem at hand, improving their critical-thinking and problem-solving skills.
It is known that IQ alone does not determine the success of a venture. This is where emotional intelligence features. It comprises three skills — the ability to name one's emotions (emotional awareness), the ability to manage and harness those emotions and the ability to help others manage their emotions.
There's no comprehensive test or parameters to determine the level of emotional intelligence. Fortunately, there are ways to hone these feelings, such as exposing students to vocabulary rich with feeling words such as anger, love, sadness, envy, happiness, gaiety and anxiety. Emotions could be tackled by recognising them in self and others, and understanding their consequences. Accurate labelling, appropriate expression and effective regulation of emotions can also help a great deal in tackling them.
The true purpose of education is to help learners become independent individuals who can contribute towards the betterment of society. The focus of self-learning programmes is usually on 'how to learn' and not 'what to learn'.
This helps students become lifelong learners, invested in seeking knowledge and solving problems. As they take initiatives to learn topics that interest them, they learn and retain concepts better.
Millennials have rightly subscribed to digital citizenship. Right from entering the digital world by signing up for an email address to participating in online journalism, they use digital media extensively. Besides unlicensed software, there is a lot of content which is in conflict with the country's laws. Therefore, it is important for digital citizens to be aware of digital ethics and etiquette to use the content for their personal and learning purposes.
Also, students need to be careful about their privacy in the digital world. Just as one locks the door before leaving the house, they ought to log out of their sessions to prevent theft of information.
The future workplace is going to evolve beyond our imagination. As the technology of today is going to change beyond recognition, the jobs of tomorrow have not yet been created. Inculcating some of these skills can help a millennial adapt to their environments and thrive in their professional lives.
The writer is Beas Dev Ralhan, co-founder and CEO, Next Education India Pvt Ltd