When I was a kid, I’ve always wanted to be a pilot.
I had pictures of airplanes in my room, large posters of cockpits, I even had a captain’s hat; and anyone who asked me: I wanna be a pilot!
Some of my friends wanted to be an astronaut, a football player, a comic book artist, a superhero, doctors, race drivers, a fireman and even a princess (that was a girl!)
What did you want to be when you were a kid?
And guess what? As you can imagine, I’m not a pilot; I’m a learning consultant. Sounds quite boring in comparison, right? And why did that happen, why did I not become a pilot?
Well, new ideas came as I grew up, change of interest, I was influenced by others and saw new or other opportunities… We “grow into things”.
And how about you? Are you in the profession you dreamed about?
No, let’s have a look into the future: How many of you have children?
And what do they tell you they want to be when they grow up?
Now, if we ask them in 10 years, 20 years from now, why they aren’t who they wanted to be when they were young? They will tell us all the reasons I had for not becoming a pilot… Plus one more:
THAT JOB/PROFESSION DOESN’T EXIST ANYMORE.
65% of children entering first grade today, will have jobs later on that don’t exist today… (data from WEF) Well, thats more than half of your children.
So the big question now is: “How do our children prepare for the jobs that don’t exist yet?” There is only one way to prepare: Never stop learning! Today’s generations grow up in a learning culture, full of information and feedback, full of visibility and connectedness.
But how does this impact us today?
Oxford University has found out that today, 57% of jobs are highly vulnerable to being replaced by or at least heavily influenced by automation and technology. Admittedly, the routine jobs are more likely to be replaced earlier, however when you think about sales teams, merchandisers, customer service reps, programmers, marketeers, researchers, recruiters, analysts, taxi drivers and the whole transportation industry… my job as a learning consultant is impacted by this. That is pretty alarming – and what does this mean for us, managers, workers, leaders in the world?
- We must adapt to the new realities
- New realities come out every day, so adaptation must happen continuously
- A Growth Mindset of openness and discipline to act
The first people to disappear from jobs are the ones who haven’ developed, who haven’t taken the chance, the time, the motivation, and the self discipline to develop.
As leaders, we have great responsibility. Part of that responsibility is to provide direction and support, to inspire and engage others. We are the ones who drive forward, who find a way when others have already given up, who continue fighting when everyone else is gone. Learning is a great source of competitive advantage – some even say the only sustainable source.
Part of our responsibility as leaders is to build and maintain a learning culture in your teams; creating an environment in which team members can grow out of themselves, continuously. The only way to succeed and lead the game of business is to keep learning.