It’s clear by now that the skills and knowledge you bring to work today will be insufficient or even obsolete tomorrow. This is true for professional and specialist skills as well as manual or service skills, which need continual upgrading and adaptation. It is also true for broader capabilities – like decision-making, communicating, thinking creatively – and learning itself. Complex challenges and relationships continually up the ante and change the rules. And most companies want to be agile, innovative, fast-learning from failure, and able to sense trends and opportunities in early stages.
This fast-changing skills scene is why executives say they are looking for lifelong learners. Meantime, employers try to find out whether you are a quick learner, a person who will adapt to and help shape change; somebody who will notice opportunities and have the courage to learn about and grab them.
“The skill of learning skills is a lifelong advantage.” Seth Goden
The changing job skills scene today is one reason why learning is important. But learning is also vital for career success into the future. It is not the old days where you could follow reliable career path within a company – or any predictable career path, for that matter. The life span of companies today is shorter. McKinsey reports that 75% of the companies listed in the S&P 500 won’t exist by 2027. In addition, many large and small new companies will arise, along with opportunities to gig-it alone. The World Economic Forum predicts that 65% of the kids currently entering primary school will have jobs that don’t exist today. That means that, as your career unfolds, the work available to you will require skills that you can’t easily predict today.
An advanced ability to learn is and will be critical to your ongoing work and career success and fulfilment.
Think about it. How would advanced learning skills and confidence affect your success and agility at work? Your Career?
Next up: Reason #2 (of 5) to upgrade yourself as a learner: To thrive in an information saturated world.