Have you ever sat around in class wondering, “What am I doing here? How is this relevant to my future? Can I afford this?” I know I have.  When it comes to the real world, what do you truly need to know to succeed? Don’t you worry, you’ve come to the right place. If you’re also one of those students who avoids buying textbooks because they cost so much—and you think you can get by without them—Cengage Unlimited might just change your mind. Because as a Cengage Unlimited subscriber, a student can access so much more than just their required textbooks—and access to more doesn’t cost anything.

This made me think, “Now that I’ll have access to over 22,000 ebooks and digital learning products, what would I use beyond my required course materials?”

The very idea led me to this article, LinkedIn Analyzed the Class of 2017. These Were the Top 10 Skills That Got Them Hired. I was quick to realize a Cengage Unlimited subscription covers me in all of the areas they mention! I’ll show you: I’ve taken LinkedIn’s list of the top 10 skills that got students hired, and matched them to ebooks that will be included in my 4-month-long subscription to Cengage Unlimited:

  1. Microsoft Office: Usually you are required to take a Microsoft Office course in your business program. Whether or not you are in the business school, this should be a requirement to all students. If you’re applying for internships or full-time jobs, usually they require you to know the basic Microsoft Skills. See how Shelly Cashman Series Microsoft Office 365 & Office 2016: Advanced (1st Edition) ISBN: 9781337251174, in Cengage Unlimited, enabled me to excel in the world of Microsoft Office!
  2. Customer Service: If you’re an intern, or applying for an entry-level position, customer service is so important in the corporate world—even if you’re not at the front desk and interacting with consumers. Every role in the corporate world involves some sort of customer service skill, so you MUST know how to interact with people! Communication is key when it comes to getting the task done correctly and on time. Discover the what I’ll access to gain these skills in Cengage Unlimited with The World of Customer Service (3rd Edition) ISBN: 9780840064240.
  3. Leadership: Now, when you’re interviewing for jobs and internships, most of the time they understand that you may or may not have the experience of being in a leadership position—and that’s okay. What they are looking for during the interview is if you have the ability to become a leader—these skills include initiative, an attitude of servitude, persistence and reliability. Explore what I’ll access in Cengage Unlimited, Leadership: Research Findings, Practice and Skills (9th Edition) 9781337620208 9781337620208ISBN: 9781337620208, that has the resources for you to succeed.
  4. Public Speaking: If you see the words “Public Speaking” and absolutely freak out inside, don’t worry, you’re not alone. It will take some time to overcome your fear, and Public Speaking: The Evolving Art (4th Edition) ISBN: 9781337107563, has the tools to help you overcome that fear. Public speaking is so important; it’s difficult to build a personal brand and succeed in the corporate world if you can’t communicate your ideas to others efficiently.
  5. Social Media: Living in a decade that is all about the usage of technology and the internet, it is crucial to know how to use social media. Whether you’re in the corporate world, retail, health or food and beverage industry, pretty much any job these days requires you to know social media. This is how you create brand awareness and interact with your consumers. To learn more about social media listening, writing and creating the content, read Media Now: Understanding Media, Culture, and Technology (10th Edition) ISBN: 9781305950849.
  6. Teamwork: Without teamwork, you’ll be missing out on pretty important skills. When you work collaboratively in a team, new ideas will form that you didn’t know even existed. If you want to be successful in a group, you must: communicate effectively, listen intently, pay attention to details, be reliable and problem solve. Collaboration is key. To learn more about this, take a look at Illustrated Course Guides: Teamwork & Team Building – Soft Skills for a Digital Workplace (2nd Edition) ISBN: 9781337119276.
  7. Time Management: Your school schedule is most likely very structured. When you are in the work environment, sometimes your work schedule isn’t as organized as you desired. This is where time management becomes a key role in the corporate world. Your managers will assign you multiple tasks and trust that you get it done in a timely manner. Make a calendar for yourself and prioritize what needs to get done. There are multiple skills that factor into time management. These skills can set you apart: from prioritization, planning, focusing and decision making. To read more about this skill, consider Strategic Management: Concepts and Cases: Competitiveness and Globalization (12th edition) ISBN: 9781305502147.
  8. Research: You’ve done this all throughout college, whether it’s research papers, conducting research in a lab or just doing research for fun. Many managers will rely on college graduates to conduct research in a professional, timely manner. Learning how to use this information and condensing it into a presentation is crucial. Some key skills when it comes to research are: critical thinking and analysis, report writing and presentation skills. Learn more about this with Research Strategies for a Digital Age (5th Edition) ISBN: 9781305969407.
  9. Management: When you graduate college, it is unlikely that you will be in a management position. Acquiring these management skills early is key when you want to become a manager in the future. Some of these early management skills include: communication, execution, innovation and motivating others. Learn how to build these skills using Fundamentals of Management (9th Edition) ISBN: 9781305959842.
  10. Event Planning: If you want to show off your skills early, planning a work event is the earliest and easiest opportunity to show off your organization, multitasking and problem-solving skills. These work events may include team meetings, interviews or internship initiatives. To learn more about how to succeed in event planning, check out Procedures & Theory for Administrative Professionals (7th Edition) ISBN: 9781111575861.

Pretty amazing, right? For $119.99 per term, I’ll have access to over 2,000 ebooks and digital learning products—all through a subscription that not only covers me for any courses requiring Cengage textbooks or digital products, but allows be to learn about thousands of other skills that will help me succeed. Cengage Unlimited is bigger than just providing more affordable access to my required course materials; I truly believe it’s going to expand what students learn because we’ll have access.

With Cengage Unlimited—the newest subscription service, where you can subscribe to get EVERYTHING (digital platforms, ebooks and print rental with your digital platform) for one low price of $119.99 per term—this will help you gain the skills you need. Developing these skills over time will put you in a great position for early success!


Author Emily Eckes is a Student Ambassador for Cengage.