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Moving From “learn to work” to “work to learn” or What did you do this year to meet the coming Future of Work?

Photo Deloitte Greenhouse At Deloitte University

Article & Image Credit: by Janet Foutty, Principal, Chairman and CEO of Deloitte Consulting LLP. Shared from LinkedIn October 2018. This is not Salt Flats original content. 

A recent study found that 90 percent of workers say they need to update their skills at least yearly to work effectively in a digital world. However, just 20 percent of business leaders are developing their people through experiential learning. Employees are asking for more learning prospects but not being offered the opportunity to grow and develop. This is a dichotomy that needs to change.

As concerns over technology’s impact on talent and jobs abound, business leaders should be pounding the table” to ensure that their employees’ skillsets are consistently refreshed. A true learning organization starts with a culture that embraces the notion that technology moves quickly, and organizations should, too. Creating a culture of continuous learning is a critical strategy in attracting and retaining top talent in an increasingly tight labor market not to mention that it is what will help equip entire organizations to change at scale. My colleague John Hagel, who runs our Center for the Edge, sums it up nicely when he says It’s no longer enough to learn to work,’ we are in a work to learn’ era”.

Businesses absolutely should promote learning and development — and the innovation that comes with it— from the top. It’s about setting a vision for the company – a vision that celebrates education, innovation, and problem-solving skills in our increasingly complex digital world.

To be clear — being conversant on disruptive technologies (something we call tech savvy”) doesn’t mean that workers need to be proficient on every emerging technology skill – in fact, organizations are finding that aptitudes such as complex problem-solving, cognitive abilities, and social skills will be the top three most in demand capabilities for the future of work. The ability to digest a challenge and understand the technologies that can be used to solve them is as powerful as understanding the technology from root to tip. Designing programs to help train internal employees with these skills will be critical if a business is to grow and expand in today’s environment.

Drawing from my experience initiating a tech fluency program to our organization, I have seen firsthand that learning is mission-critical, necessary to attract and retain top talent, and vital to upskilling employees throughout increasingly circuitous career paths. The CEOs I talk to every day, from companies large and small, are seeing the need for a tech savvy” workforce to move into the future.

With technology advancing at a breathless pace, what we are seeing is truly change at scale, with organizations, industries, and even societies on the verge of looking very different than they have. To keep pace with this unprecedented change, helping personnel fine-tune their existing skills and providing them the tools and resources to develop new ones are the non-negotiable building blocks from the present to the future.

This is not Salt Flats original content. This article and image appeared October 2018 on LinkedIn. Photo: Deloitte Greenhouse at Deloitte University

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