21st Century Skills

21st century skills model

Leader in Me and 21st-Century Skills

We live in a fast, up-tempo, modern economy that requires competencies such as initiative, communication, collaboration, responsibility, critical thinking, creativity, and productivity. In the world of education, these are often referred to as 21st-century skills.

Why Are 21st-Century Skills Necessary?

With technology rapidly advancing in an information-based economy, there is no way to predict what the future of our world will look like. However, with the right skill-set, today’s students will become tomorrow’s leaders. Employers demand skills like collaborative thinking, teamwork, communication, critical thinking, and productivity more than ever. Many people without these skills will be at a disadvantage as the world demands more from its workforce.

Can 21st-Century Skills Be Taught?

Many people are under the impression that the 21,st-century skills required in today’s workforce come naturally or will be learned on the job.

Classrooms provide one of the best settings to learn these vital skills. Leader in Me incorporates 21st-century skill development into the everyday curriculum and culture of schools. It enables the perfect harmony of academic learning and 21st-century skill development to benefit students for years to come.

How Does Leader in Me Teach 21st-Century Skills?

FranklinCovey has many years of experience working with schools to teach such skills, and we have learned that proficiency in these areas can be learned by anyone, no matter what age, gender, social or economic background, or ethnicity. Leader in Me brings 21st-century skills to students by focusing on universal, timeless principles and their application.

A foundational framework for teaching 21st-century skills to students in Leader in Me Schools is The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, which has sold over 25 million copies in 52 languages worldwide and is an industry leader on personal effectiveness and leadership. Teachers take the principles and teach them on a level a child can understand, then give students leadership roles to practice these skills. These include skills such as responsibility, initiative, goal setting, time management, relationship building, Empathic Listening, collaboration, and wellness.

Leaders, influencers, employees, and organizations from around the globe have relied on the 7 Habits for their personal growth and development. Now students are learning these skills and thriving in the 21st century.

See below how the 7 Habits align with the 21st-century skills identified by the Partnership for 21st Century Learning:


21st-Century Skills Leader in Me
Habits 1‒3
Initiative & Self-Direction Be Proactive®
Leadership & Responsibility Begin With the End in Mind®
Productivity & Accountability Put First Things First®
Habits 4‒6
Social Skills & Cross-Cultural Skills Think Win-Win®
Communication & Collaboration Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood®
Creativity Synergize®
Habit 7
Adaptability & Flexibility Sharpen the Saw ®

In addition to the 7 Habits, Leader in Me uses other content offerings to teach schools 21st-century skills. These include The 4 Disciplines of Execution® and The Speed of Trust®.