Hi parents! Do you remember the problems I have listed in my last post? I wanted to give you detailed answers to all of them one by one but I realized it would be far too long for one weekly blog post. It would require many pages to do it as good as you deserve. So I decided to make it short. If you really want to get my extensive answers to all the problems, feel free to write your comments below this post, send me an email or post your request on our social media pages. I will answer all of your questions and maybe I will create a free report for you. Thanks!
Globalization requires technical proficiency + employability skills
As a result of globalization, every country will require that both sides of the competitiveness equation be fulfilled. The 4th industrial revolution, that is giving back some power to local actors on their local market, will emphasize this requirement. Employees will need to be, at the same time, technically proficient and experts in their employability skills.
Technical proficiency is quite common nowadays (the education system is quite good at it). CEOs and HR managers agree with that. They have no problem finding applicants with technical proficiency. They have much more problem finding employability skills in the people they need to hire.
What does it mean? The education system doesn’t teach you critical thinking skills but more something like “the ONLY ANSWER is …”. Even if they don’t always say exactly that, the idea is the same. You don’t consider all the possible answers. Instead, you have to stick to the conventional solutions. So, instead of “Think outside the box” you have ”Think inside the box.”
Here are some of the most important skills CEOs are looking for (at all skills levels):
Good communication and collaboration
How to teach your children to “think outside the box”
Here are a few ideas:
Instead of teaching dogmas, ask more questions, explore other pathways to get the problem solved.
Make a habit to do things with your children outside of their (and your) comfort zone. Do things in new way to see it and live it differently.
If your child is right-handed, encourage him to use is left hand instead. Do it with him. It is a really interesting experience.
Another great one: let your child, under your supervision for the safety (but not for the creation!), create a cake or a meal by himself. Go with him to the marketplace, give him his own budget, and let him buy the vegetables, ingredients, etc. so that he can make his own creation. After the tasting, review with him every step from the idea to the finish product. Ask questions; make him question himself about what he has done and what he could have done differently. You will be amazed by your child’s creativity and his ability to challenge himself.
Give them opportunities to do stimulating and thought-provoking activities.
Tell them to ask questions as much as they think they need to be clear about something they are seeing or thinking about.
I know, sometimes we would prefer quiet kids, who don’t ask too many questions or don’t ask any questions at all. But never forget that the few years at the start will foster the right mindset they will need to thrive when they will have grown up. And you will be proud to have done so well with your descendants.
Working in the field of 3D printing example
Imagine you are working in the field of 3D printing. In fact, I think that any field could do, but let’s stick with our beloved 3D printing field.
You work in a company that has just invented a new way to print much faster and with almost no after-print processing and cleaning and your company name is Carbon3D. You think that you have a big advantage over the competitors. You even do an amazing TED talk that will have been viewed more than 2 millions times. All the people in your company have invested a lot of time and energy to get that breakthrough. Lots of money has been invested too. How long do you think your competitive advantage will last?
The answer speaks volumes about the speed of evolution in the 21st century: less than one year.
A competitor company, NewPro3D has invented a process to print faster than Carbon3D, with any type of resin (Carbon3D uses proprietary ones), and instead of being limited to the print bed, NewPro3D’s technology can print objects as much as 7.5 meters long.
I have another question for you:
Do you think that technical proficiency has been enough to make these two companies so innovative? Do you think that their managers will ask their team members to think inside the box, to use conformist thinking in order to go ahead faster and create new machines, materials or processes?
Of course not. Workers in these companies will use each and every skill I mentioned above in order to stay competitive. Everybody will have to collaborate if they want to stay on course and grow. Engineers will have to create something that probably doesn’t exist yet. Even the marketing service will have to be really creative and good in communication and collaboration both internally and externally (with other teams, prospects, journalists or customers).
I will finish with a few words from Richard Riley, former U.S. Secretary of Education. He summarized quite well the challenges and at the same time opportunities that lies ahead for us and, even more, for our children:
“The jobs in the greatest demand in the future don’t yet exist and will require workers to use technologies that have not yet been invented to solve problems that we don’t yet even know are problems.”
In my next blog post, I will tell you a few words about the STEAM you could put in your children engines.
Have a great day!