Valuable Things That Business School Won’t Teach You

 

Sure, it’s great to have on your resume if you went to a highly esteemed business school, but that isn’t what makes the difference between a good and a great employer. The corporate rat race can be a winding and difficult road, but the qualities that will carry you through the tough times are essentially the same as they are in any other field: focus, gratitude, humility, and patience.

These are the timeless traits that will make you into an effective force no matter what you choose to do with your life. There are plenty of people with distinguished qualifications, but they fail to ever become a force to be reckoned with because they lack these qualities.

Here are some skills which are essential for your future success, things that school can’t always teach:

Listening Skills

 

While MBA programs are quick to emphasize things like presentation skills, it is rare that the focus is on listening skills. Listening makes up half of communication, so it must not be overlooked. Some people may think speaking is the most important part of the equation, and assume that listening is simply for the weak or incompetent, but nothing is further from the truth.

Listening can make you a better leader, as you are taking in more information before making your decisions. If you do not listen to your team, you are simply unfit to steer the ship in an effective way because you are choosing to only view the situation from one perspective: your own.

Learning to Work Together

 

This is a skill that goes hand in hand with listening skills. You need to be able to work synergistically with those around you, whether they are employees or coworkers.

While you don’t need to be friends with everyone outside of work, learning to work effectively with all types of personalities is a must for success. Many companies today are making great strides in regard to managing teamwork via project management software. This is something for a business owner to consider if the team as a whole is struggling.

Focus On Goals

 

Without setting your sights on something tangible to accomplish, you and the team will be improperly oriented for success. Setting goals will amp up focus and morale, and lead to incredible results. Sure, simply aiming to “do well” in whatever you do is a noble mindset, but when it comes down to the reality of directing a business, you need to put more concrete concepts of success in mind.

It’s a good idea to have a goal that is challenging but still attainable. In much the same way you wouldn’t go to the gym and immediately try to bench press 300lbs, you do not want to place the bar too highly in your business endeavors.

Think of goals as periodic stretches of your company’s ability, just as you would add weights slowly to a bar. These challenges will be engaging to those participating, while also expanding everyone’s abilities in the process. There’s no discovering the potential of a company without strategically pushing the limits.

Utilizing Latest Technology

 

They likely go over different technologies in business school, but the landscape of what’s possible changes every single day. Automation is a facet that can readily be applied to your business model to stellar results.

In the past, long despised duties like accounting or billing required valuable man hours. Fortunately, high quality AP automation software and inventory software are now options instead, which hold enormous potential for saving money, time, and stress.

Proper Etiquette

 

When people are churned out of school with an MBA, many times they are regarded as rude, condescending, or otherwise too casual. Be careful not to overestimate how much other people care about your MBA.

Business veterans will tell you there is a standard of manners and grooming which are unspoken yet entirely crucial. Being mindful of the importance of etiquette
can go a long way.

Be Grateful

 

Keep in mind that there are many people worse off than you, no matter how much a certain situation at work is bothering you. If you saw one of your peers get promoted, don’t be mad that it wasn’t you. Instead, look at the situation realistically and be honest with yourself. There was probably a perfectly feasible reason why that person got the promotion and you didn’t. Perhaps they were there longer, or emanate helpfulness in a way that you don’t. Instead of being mad, simply assess the situation and learn from it.

Patience

 

Nowadays, when people enter their first job, many times they convey a sense of entitlement, which is disconcerting to other people. Nobody likes a person that comes in to the office expecting everyone to owe them something, they do not.

You need to remember that even the highest ranking CEO’s once needed to earn their keep early on. Don’t assume that just because you graduated from school that the education ends there; learning is a lifelong process and it always will be.

 

 

Gil Artmoore has spent the past two decades working various roles in IT departments for many businesses, small and large. Recently, he started writing out the things he’s learned, experienced, and witnessed in the small business/tech world during his career. He is eager to share his insights with the rest of the world.