Prepping for Cookies: Value of the 5 Skills

Written by, Stacie Simpson

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When girls participate in the cookie program, they “earn and learn”—they earn funds for their Girl Scout activities while learning key skills that will help them in business and life.
All they need to do to develop the 5 Skills is sell cookies with coaching from adults who
understand the 5 Skills! Here’s your how-to guide to getting started:

What are the 5 Skills and why do they matter?

1) Goal Setting: Girls set cookie sales goals and, with their team, create a plan to reach them. This matters because girls need to know how to set and reach goals to succeed in school, on the job, and in life.

2) Decision Making: Girls decide where and when to sell cookies, how to market their sale, and what to do with their earnings. This matters because girls must make many decisions, big and small, in their lives. Learning this skill helps them make good ones.

3) Money Management: Girls develop a budget, take cookie orders, and handle customers’ money. This matters because girls need to know how to handle money—from their lunch money to their allowance to (someday) their paycheck.

4) People Skills: Girls learn how to talk (and listen!) to their customers, as well as learning how to work as a team with other girls. This matters because it helps them do better in school (on group projects, on sports teams, and on the playground) and, later, at work.

5) Business Ethics: Girls act honestly and responsibly during every step of the cookie sale. This matters because employers want to hire ethical employees—and the world needs ethical leaders in every field.

Why do we focus on the 5 Skills?

Because when your Girl Scout has learned these skills, she’ll be poised for success in her
career. Think about it: When employers interview job candidates, they all look for the same things. This is true whether the employer is a bank, high-tech company, university, hospital, publishing house, car dealership, accounting firm—or even the local pet store! They want:

Someone who can set goals and meet deadlines.
Blowing a deadline can mean blowing a deal!

Someone who works well with others.
Who wants to deal with strife and complaining in the workplace? Not the boss!

Someone who understands customers.
It doesn’t matter whether the “customers” are hospital patients, TV viewers, or other companies—every business has to know its customers and what they want.

Someone who can influence others.
This doesn’t just mean selling a product. Employers want people who can sell ideas, pitch
projects, and make deals.

Someone who is honest, trustworthy, and reliable.
This kind of goes without saying—or it should!

Sound like anyone you know?
That’s your Girl Scout, using the 5 Skills she learned in the Girl Scout Cookie Program.