How we’re going to need to rethink skills in the future

How we’re going to need to rethink skills in the future

Today, skills which were relevant 20 years ago are no longer important. At school, children were taught how to do basic arithmetic, complex geometric equations as well as how to wrap their brains around algebra and the fact that maths contained more letters than numbers.

Now, there are computer and smart device applications which perform all of these processes for you which makes the learning of skills such as these a bit pointless. However, what’s being focused on now is the practical application of these particular skills as opposed to mere calculation.

The result of skills such as mathematical operations and other processing skills being taken over by computers is that many people – who were employed to perform these functions – have become redundant. Jobs such as data capturing, which involve repetitive work that needs a high degree of accuracy, have been shifted off to computers. What’s more, computers are able to do these jobs better because they are able to do these tasks with the required accuracy time after time without human error or other basic human requirements such as the need for sleep and food getting in the way.

The jobs of the future

Just because some people’s jobs are being declared redundant doesn’t mean that we can’t find other work for these individuals. Owing to the rate of technology change, new processes and procedures are being developed all the time. This means that people need to be available to manage these processes – no matter how good computers get, they will still need to be managed by people.

In order for them to remain relevant, we will need to harness the skills that people already have and see how we can use them in the changing world of work. As a part of constantly reevaluating business and seeing how these entities can adapt to the times, business owners need to look at the people who they have in the organisation and see how they can upskill them to take on any new roles and responsibilities that they need to.

The skills of the future

In 2016, the World Economic Forum (WEF) put together a list of skills that people would need to have in 2020 in order to survive and thrive in the working world. These are:

  • Complex problem-solving
  • Critical thinking
  • Creativity
  • People management
  • Coordinating with others
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Judgement and decision-making abilities
  • Service orientation
  • Negotiation skills
  • Cognitive flexibility

The organisation also said that by 2020, the Fourth Industrial Revolution will have brought us advanced robotics and autonomous transport, artificial intelligence and machine learning, advanced materials, biotechnology and genomics. With these new areas that business needs to go into, the skills that we mentioned above will need to be moulded in order to adequately respond to what needs to be done.

However, in order to make sure that these skills are adequately acquired and that people can use them properly, the education system will need to change dramatically. Education curricula cannot focus solely on theory at the expense of gaining practical knowledge. Practical training will gain a foothold over theory.

Of course we can’t disregard theory altogether, however this will end up taking a backseat to practical training as working with the technology is the best way for students to learn.

The Skills of the Future at Future Self Academy

At Future Self Academy, we firmly believe that the way that people learn, in addition to the skills that they acquire as a result of this learning, needs to change in order for people to remain relevant.  These skills are not necessarily those which have been traditionally taught. They come from the collective conscious and experience of people who have worked closely with these technologies and made them work.

We have partnered with these pioneer thinkers and have combined their thinking into author-led courses so that students can reap the benefit of their knowledge and apply it into their everyday lives.

For more information about the courses which we offer, please follow this link.

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