In my last blog, I discussed how the world is changing and offered you some thoughts about how to thrive in an era of exponential change. It’s good context for this blog because it sets out the nature and impact of the changes happening in the world today at both a business and social level.
This time I want to turn attention from looking at the environment in which businesses operate to the environment within the business. Naturally the two do not exist in isolation, it’s just a handy way of splitting the topic over two blogs! So, let’s focus on your company’s structure and its most important asset of all – its people.
The Skills Leader
Earlier this year, my colleague Uwe Kueppers posted a blog in which he compared the rate of change in skills required in industry to Moore’s law. He was making the point that in this era of change, the skills needed in industry now are different from those we learned when studying, and that the skills of the future will be different from what we are even able to teach now. This means that a vital skill within your organisation is the ability to keep learning. It is important therefore to create an environment of lifelong learning within your company.
Industry can learn a little from new approaches being taken in education here. At my young daughter’s school, for example, she recently had lessons unlike any that I remember from my own education. They were focused on learning how to learn.
Each student was required to find two topics that they would self-teach. Some chose languages, others computer programming, another about technical solutions in gaming. The students kept a diary of their experiences to describe how they went about resourcing teaching materials, what they learned, and how they learned.