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Why Enterprise and Entrepreneurial skills are important for young people

Published 29th February 2012 by

In a fast changing world, which is becoming increasingly competitive, it's essential for young people to leave school with a range of skills that are needed to survive life outside the classroom. These skills can be referred to as an 'enterprising toolkit' and its content is at the top of every employers agenda; ultimately as educational leaders it is our responsibility to help students gain their first step on the employment ladder. An enterprising mind-set has been proven to support academic performance, confidence and all round aspiration. It is key for young people to understand the importance of social responsibility and how it's an integral part of tomorrow's business world. In the wider world we should ask all young people to use their talent, contribute and make a difference. We have a number of speakers visiting schools to teach students enterprising skills.

1. Being a young person in today’s world job hunting, or deciding a career path, is a bit like walking over an exploding mind field. You only have to pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV to see the ever depressing statistic bombs going off:
2. The pool of 16-24 years old unemployed seeking benefits has now risen to a staggering 1.3 million and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.
3. A recent survey revealed that top employers feel that 1 in 3 students leaving school do not have the appropriate skills for today’s work place.
4. A record number of graduates are unable to find work with an estimated 30% of last year’s leavers still unemployed
5. It’s estimated that there are approx. 150 young people venturing after every one opportunity – whether that be a job, apprenticeship or university place
6. The increased cost of going to university has deterred a suggested 10% young people from applying to university

The days are long gone from students being on one way transmission completing A Levels, walking into university and then strolling into a semi-guaranteed £25k a year job. Alternatives to university are urgently needed and starting your own business is now a valid career option for young people, we saw an increase 15% of 16-25 entrepreneurs in 2011.Employers have a long list of skills they demand from their work force and young people are expected to arrive at work day one with some of these. The top 100 employers were asked the key skills they wish for from young recruits:

Good communication skills, applies to written and verbally English
Good attitude – hard working and eager to learn. Realising that they’ll have to put in the hours and start at the bottom to climb the ladder.
Be a team player and also have the ability to lead.
Use their initiative and be proactive.
Take a risk, grab a challenge and push themselves out of their comfort zones!
Be emotionally robust and resilient to change (including rejection and failure).

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