It’s becoming increasingly obvious that skills-literacy is critical to succeed in today’s workplace. The traditional job-based is quickly fading away. A skill-driven landscape is emerging. Welcome to a new reality!
“In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.” -Eric Hoffer
Mr. Hoffer had issued that warning several years ago, prior to his passing in 1983. As we are entering the AI era, it is more relevant today than ever.
The reality is, you will no longer be required to have a college degree. The person who masters an in-demand skill that solves real problems will always get to choose between the high-paying jobs.
To thrive in a future workforce dominated by AI, we must prioritize skills over basic job qualifications. Otherwise, we will become irrelevant and unnecessary.
That doesn’t mean your college degree is totally a waste of money and time. In fact, it should give an advantage. That means you already have what’s necessary to learn, unlearn, and relearn.
However, with or without a college degree, the person with solid and practical skills will rule the world of work in the future. It’s either we embrace and ride this wave of change or we settle for an average life.
That reminds me of when I first came to the United States as a broke immigrant unable to speak English. Everything was new and different.
Learning English was the highest mountain I had to climb. I bought children’s books with pictures, so I could learn how to say banana, orange, apple, etc.
At first, I didn’t think I was going to survive that drastic change. I had to completely reinvent myself. I even had to retrain my taste buds to adapt to new tastes in the US. It was hard and uncomfortable readapting in a new country and culture.
As the title of my keynote presentation and first book suggests, “No Condition is Permanent!” By that I mean, when the music changes, we have to change the dance. And that starts with telling ourselves a different story.
Time For New Conversations
We can’t keep talking about the way things used to be. Don’t be like those people who talk about how twenty years ago they could have gotten rich in real estate when they still can do it today. We need to have new conversations with ourselves and others that are based on current reality.
Forward-thinking companies are already embracing this new change. They are developing a culture of relearning and upskilling. They understand that a skills-driven approach is essential to staying agile in a rapidly changing world.
They are looking for problem solvers to the new problems they are facing. They need forward-thinking individuals to show up and help them meet the new demands.
That said, this transformation cannot happen without leaders who champion skills-literacy and recognize the value of diverse skill sets within their teams.
To stay employable and relevant, we must also play our part in this shift. It’s crucial we identify, develop, and leverage new skills effectively to make the transition.
By constantly learning and adapting, we can thrive in a world where artificial intelligence is reshaping industries.
There’s no doubt change is not easy, especially the one we are discussing here. It can be messy and uncomfortable. For most people there were no warning signs. They are waking up to a new world that sort of creeped on us.
Do not be one of those people. The way we work is changing at breakneck speed. Be the learner instead of the learned.