What are the most important skills needed to succeed after graduation? This is what we asked Ken Haycock, a research professor of management and organization at the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California. Haycock is also an adjunct professor at Australia’s Queensland University of Technology, professor emeritus and former director at the San Jose School of Library and Information Science (the largest in the world), and at the University of British Columbia School of Library, Archival, and Information Studies.
All of Haycock’s accomplishments are not only credited to his extensive education (a B.A. from the University of Western Ontario, an M.Ed from the University of Ottawa, and A.M.L.S. from the University of Michigan, and M.B.A. from Royal Roads University, and an Ed.D. from Brigham Young University), but to the skills he learned outside of the classroom.
While Haycock has a number of degrees from various institutions, he credits much of his career success to the time he spent at Royal Roads University, where he fostered skills and relationships as part of his M.B.A. program that have been crucial to his successful career.
These are the three skills Haycock believes are critical for young B.C. grads to embrace in order to be successful after graduation.
“At Royal Roads, we were put into teams the first day… My team made a decision early to be successful and learn to work together. We quickly discovered how powerful our team could be.” This team, who call themselves “Five Alive” still to this day, keep in touch. They have annual retreats to discuss each others’ career and life goals, and prepare for both obstacles and success. By working independently and not learning to effectively work with others and develop relationships, you miss out on opportunities.
“Teamwork should be taught. We had to learn to adapt and deal with each others’ personality types, work and leadership styles, and how to both lead and follow.” Learning this is necessary for getting ahead in any work environment.
“You need to understand who you are; your strengths and weaknesses.” When Haycock and the others first chose their designated roles in Five Alive, the least experienced member asked to be team leader. “She wanted to learn and grow by receiving constructive criticism from the team.”
“The network was critical! In the past, we’ve offered each other suggestions about jobs that are available… The person sitting next to you could be the very person that’s going to tell you about the perfect job for yourself, or the very person that’s going hire you.” Five Alive has provided Haycock with great resources for both personal and profession matters. “I had a legal issue and [a team member] got me in touch with a lawyer who could answer questions quickly without charging.” Currently, he has a major consulting project, one of the members of Five Alive was a perfect fit for the project, are they’re now working on it together.
More than 30 years later, Five Alive, continues to not only stay in touch, but encourage, influence, and support one another. This May, the “high energy, professional, productive, and tightly connected team,” is travelling to Vermont to not only enjoy each other’s company, but rely on one another’s skills and resources to prepare for the next steps of their own lives. Haycock believes that while, prior to attending Royal Roads he’d already received a terrific education, but by attending its M.B.A. program, both his life and career have been enriched by working with and growing with the other four members of Five Alive.