Not everyone wants a perfectly obedient companion but all dogs need certain essential skills to keep them and the people around them safe. Here's my suggestions for "must haves" in doggy skills:
#5 - Leave It
The all important skill of relinquishing objects or food (or anything else a dog might want to grab). This will help prevent bites, ruined possessions and keep your dog safe from consuming dangerous items left lying around. Luckily leave it as an easy skill to teach and most dogs are quite happy to trade!
#4 - Stay
Essential for doorways, greeting visitors, a moment when you have to drop your leash, going up and down stairs. Really there's no limit to what stay can do for you. A good, full proofed stay is absolute must have for many dogs and owners. Stay takes some time and effort to teach but is well worth your while.
#3 - Walking On Leash
A dog that walks well on leash is a dog that gets lots of walks and socialization. Walks are a crucial part of keeping both a dog and owner happy. Teaching your dog not to pull you down the street is something every dog walker can apperciate.
#2 - Quick Down or Drop command
Having a cue word that immediately stops your dog while running or jumping can help de-escalte any situation where your dog is over excited. This one needs to be taught in small steps.
#1 - Coming When Called
To me this is the number one skill ANY dog needs. It can be a lifesaver!