Committee for Children Blog

How SEL Helps Children Succeed in School, the Workplace, and Life

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social emotional learning, workforce readiness, employability skills, SEL, jobs

It’s been shown that strong, highly developed social-emotional skills have positive effects on student life, friendships, and academic progress—all of which are made up of social interactions, conflict resolutions, and concentration/dedication to tasks. The level of capability at all of these can decide not only a child’s life path, but also affect the workforce success of both employees and companies.

Early and Long-Term Benefits of SEL in the Workplace

In our ebook, Global Greatness: How Social-Emotional Learning Helps Children Succeed in School, the Workplace, and Life, we’ve gathered varied and experienced perspectives on both the early and long-term benefits of social-emotional learning (SEL). Executive Director of Committee for Children Joan Cole Duffell reflects on the fact that, as companies, office environments, and customer needs have evolved dramatically in the last 20 years, the need for strong social and emotional skills has risen.

Employers and Customers are Asking for SEL Skills

Customers are demanding more intuition and responsiveness in their products. Office design has changed to accommodate both creative and environmental needs. Work collaborations and relationships are more cross-cultural and very often maintained between different cities and countries. And companies themselves are asking more of their employees—more insight, more creativity, more collaboration.

“Deeper relationships require sensitivity, empathy, social awareness, and an ability to imagine a completely different life experience from our own,” writes Duffell. “When people who work in [multicultural] environments possess these skills, collaboration can be magical and highly profitable; and when they lack these skills, collaboration can be disastrous with serious and negative bottom-line implications.”

Leaders in Their Fields Chime In

Additional contributors to the ebook include leaders in education, business, military service, and global foundations. They all speak to the value and necessity of preparing children for present and future work environments, and to the critical availability and updating of resources and education policies that make that possible.

“Most states include SEL standards for early learning,” writes Duffell. “But these standards often stop at or before the elementary-school level, and we need to address this oversight . . . We would do well to listen to the empathy-seeking employers out there who are clamoring for employees with social and emotional competency.”

Read more to find out why we need SEL now more than ever.