Posts Tagged ‘skills’
The Youth Innovation Skills Measurement Tool is an instrument to support the development of the skills and attitudes which young people require if they are to become the innovators of tomorrow. The Tool measures five generic skills that underpin innovative behaviour and form a set of attributes clearly linked to the innovation process:
- Creativity (imagination, connecting ideas, tackling and solving problems, curiosity);
- Self-efficacy (self belief, self assurance, self awareness, feelings of empowerment, social confidence);
- Energy (drive, enthusiasm, motivation, hard work, persistence and commitment);
- Risk-propensity (a combination of risk tolerance and the ability to take calculated risks); and
- Leadership (vision and the ability to mobilise commitment).
The skills were identified through a literature review and through testing the concepts with separate focus groups of young people and teachers from different disciplines in schools and colleges.
Young people can best develop the skills for innovation by receiving positive feedback and recognition for early successes and having opportunities to experience successful innovation for themselves. These experiences increase young people’s confidence in their ability to identify problems and find solutions; life skills that are increasingly demanded by employers. Young people’s innovation is usually associated with teenagers, but studies of younger children demonstrate the benefits of teaching design, problem solving or critical skills for developing the capability to innovate.
Nothing in common – The career aspirations of young people mapped against projected labour market demand
This paper asks a simple question: is there any alignment between the career aspirations of young people, aged between 13 and 18, and the best estimates of actual demand within the current and future labour market? The question is relevant to young people, employers and future prosperity. The question is pertinent to young people who make important decisions about their future at ages 14, 16 and 18. Such decisions, about subject options chosen or dropped and experience sought, gained or missed are essential to the ultimate prospects of young people in the jobs market. This paper asks, therefore, whether teenagers, as they make these decisions, do so with career aspirations in mind which reflect realistic opportunities in the world of work.
While this report does not provide a precise comparison of the full breadth of employment opportunities against the understood aspirations of young people, and a regularly repeated study of that character is surely demanded, it does provide the single best insight into teenage aspirations and finds that they have nothing in common with the best estimate of projected labour market demand. Data presented here suggests strongly that the youth labour market is not working efficiently, that employer signalling of opportunities is not being received effectively by young people and that the need to address such information gaps is pressing.
A bachelor’s degree used to provide enough basic training to last a career. Yet today, the skills college graduates acquire during college have an expected shelf life of only five years according to extensive work we’ve done in conjunction with Deloitte’s Shift Index. The key takeaway? The lessons learned in school can become outdated long before student loans are paid off.
Today, individuals must constantly hone and enhance their skills to remain relevant in the workforce. As a society, we must figure out how to rapidly re-skill vast number of people on an ongoing basis to both remain relevant globally and to avoid long periods of high unemployment. Adapting to this cycle of obsolescence is perhaps the biggest challenge.
As chief executives, and now in retirement, they often talk about the inherent importance of the liberal arts to a successful workplace where creativity, problem solving, flexibility, and teamwork are paramount. In survey after survey, employers seem to agree that the skill they most want in future workers is adaptability. Those who hire complain that they often find today’s college graduates lacking in interpersonal skills, problem solving, effective written and oral communication skills, teamwork, and the ability to think critically and analytically. Employers say that future workplaces need those skills as well as degree holders who can come up with novel solutions to problems and better sort through information to filter out the most critical pieces.
The trends identified in our research suggest that a defining feature of the shift from multinational to transnational companies is the development of global webs of high-, medium- and low-skilled work that straddle national borders, where a growing proportion of high-value work is located in low-cost countries such as China and India. The global distribution of labour becomes a potential source of competitive advantage, because companies have more sourcing options – that may or may not be superior to the strategies deployed by competitors. But the value derived from these webs is not simply the connections they make between isolated individuals, companies, suppliers and others that are scattered around the world: much of the value is embedded in the network itself.
Read also: A new generation of Chinese Innovators
Is it time to re-think the list of life skills that we want our kids to know?
Our economies have for many years been moving away from old style manufacturing to services. That transition is set to continue, and requires new skills sets. Meanwhile, traditional and digital technologies are converging and becoming more integrated; and changing how we find, use, present and understand information. Robots are becoming ever more intelligent and have been forecast to be capable of replacing millions of lower skilled, and increasingly higher skilled, jobs in the USA alone in coming decades.
This paper provides an account of the main approaches, debates and evidence in the literature on the role of workforce skills in the innovation process in developed economies. It draws on multiple sources including the innovation studies discipline, Human Capital theory, institutionalist labour market studies and the work organisation discipline. Extensive use is also made of official survey data to describe and quantify the diversity of skills and occupations involved in specific types of innovation activities.
The paper identifies a number of major findings in the literature. First, the predominant form of innovation in firms is incremental, and this points to the central role of the broader workforce in the generation, adaptation and diffusion of technical and organisational change. Second, achieving high academic standards within a country for the largest proportion of school students not only supports high participation in post school education and training but creates a workforce with greater potential to engage productively with innovation. Third, the extent to which a firm’s workforce actively engages in innovation is strongly determined by particular work organisation practices. Finally, there are large differences across advanced nations in workforce skill formation systems, especially for vocational skills. Such differences result in large disparities across nations in the share of their workforce with formal vocational qualifications, and in the level of these qualifications. The resulting differences in the quantity and quality of workforce skills are a major factor in determining the observed patterns of innovation and key aspects of economic performance.
I believe the accelerated pace of change, the increased complexity of the business environment, and the requirement for individual differentiation will place a new premium on individual, self-directed learning. Continual, personalized learning will be the key to individual growth and differentiation, and could eventually lead to a personalized learning and development revolution.
To achieve these ends, workers must become more agile, curious, and committed to continuous learning. For the past few decades, knowledge workers have been required to master only their particular areas of expertise, but subject matter expertise is no longer enough. Applying one’s knowledge to an organization’s existing strategy or operations is only part of today’s business challenge. We need leaders and employees with foresight who can identify new opportunities, design creative solutions, and bring them to market. Simply put, we need innovation workers, not just knowledge workers. Innovation workers differentiate themselves through their ability to understand context, to judge situations, and to deviate from established norms in order to create new, creative solutions to the challenges they face.
Hoy, los jóvenes latinoamericanos que deciden ingresar al mundo laboral después de la secundaria arrancan en desventaja. Las herramientas que traen consigo son fundamentalmente aquellas que adquirieron durante su trayecto escolar. Y si bien es cierto que la familia también cumple un papel importante, la escuela debe prestar su concurso alineando las habilidades y competencias con aquellas relevantes para desarrollarse con éxito en el ámbito del trabajo y en la sociedad en general.
El diagnóstico aquí realizado indica que esto no está sucediendo. ¿Qué hace pensar que el sistema educativo latinoamericano no está cumpliendo bien su función? Por un lado, se observa que la transición de la escuela al trabajo para los jóvenes de hoy es más difícil que para sus pares de hace apenas unas décadas. Las habilidades adquiridas en la secundaria son menos valoradas por los empleadores, como lo demuestra la importante caída registrada en la prima pagada a estos trabajadores vis a vis aquellos con menores niveles de educación.