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Stacia Pierce, CEO of Ultimate Lifestyle Enterprises Courtesy of Ultimate Lifestyle Enterprises
Commentary

3 human skills that robots can’t replace

Feb 25, 2015

MPW Insider is an online community where the biggest names in business and beyond answer timely career and leadership questions. Today’s answer for: What is one piece of advice all millennials should take before entering the workforce? is written by Stacia Pierce, CEO of Ultimate Lifestyle Enterprises.

Millennials are a group of well-educated, creative, and optimistic young professionals who are set to take over the workforce. Their progressive thinking and ability to quickly adapt to change will benefit them greatly in our ever-evolving society. But before they enter the workforce, there are few crucial skills they should have:

Communicate effectively
Regardless of how corporate dynamics change over time, one thing remains true: communication is key. According to a Carnegie Foundation report, 85% of your financial success is due to your interpersonal skills. That means only 15% of your success is a result of your technical knowledge. Although millennials tend to favor digital communication over personal interaction it’s important to remember that people run businesses, not robots.

Be a team player
Work on your interpersonal skills. Before entering the workforce, it would greatly benefit you to spend some time working on your written, oral, and social skills in a live setting. College is the perfect place to practice; use group project assignments as a way to improve problem solving abilities and negotiation tactics. Group dynamics require that we learn to work together, listen attentively to other viewpoints, and then collectively make a decision -- a scenario you will come across often in the workplace.

Make connections
Start building relationships with others in your field before you enter the workforce. Making these connections could even help you land your first job. With so many people competing for the same positions these days, it’s important to create an advantage for yourself. The ability to connect with people face-to-face will always be considered a valuable skill to employers.

Read all answers to the MPW Insider question: What is one piece of advice all millennials should take before entering the workforce?

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Recent graduates: Why it's okay to be unemployed after college by Maren Kate Donovan, CEO of Zirtual.

The downsides of technology in a hyper-connected world by Cheryl Cook, vice president of global channels and alliances at Dell.

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What you can actually learn from getting fired by Gay Gaddis, CEO and founder of T3.

Why social media is a blessing (and a curse) by Pam Wickham, vice president of corporate affairs and communications at Raytheon Company.

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The myth behind climbing the corporate ladder by Shiza Shahid, co-founder and ambassador of Malala Fund.

The one word that will boost your career by Jennifer Steinmann, Chief Talent Officer of Deloitte.

6 ways to determine if you’re in the right career by Debby Hopkins, CEO at Citi Ventures.

There’s no such thing as a linear career path by Trish Lukasik, Senior Vice President of Sales at PepsiCo.

Want to succeed in your career? Get uncomfortable by Kathy Bloomgarden, CEO of Ruder Finn.

Listen to your gut — it could make you CEO one day by Kara Goldin, founder and CEO of Hint Water.

Why millennials have the power to change the workplace — for good by Lauren Stiller Rikleen, President of Rikleen Institute for Strategic Leadership.

Why passion may not be enough to build a successful career by Sarah Leary, co-founder and vice president of marketing and operations at Nextdoor.

How to build a career, not just a job by Alyse Nelson, president and CEO of Vital Voices Global Partnership.

Best lesson from your first job: discovering your weaknesses by Ann Marie Petach, Senior Managing Director of Solutions Group at BlackRock.

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Can millennials revolutionize business? by Erica Dhawan, co-author of “Get Big Things Done” and CEO of Cotential.

Girl Scouts CEO Anna Maria Chavez: My best career advice for millennials by Anna Maria Chavez, CEO of the Girl Scouts of America.

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