Close the Talent Gap by Transforming the Learning Experience

Excerpt from モThe New World of Work: From the Cube to the Cloudヤ by Terri Maxwell and Tim Houlne (Inspire on Purpose Publishing).

By Terri Maxwell

“If you want something better, you have to be willing to do something different.”

In our new book, “The New World of Work: From the Cube to the Cloud”(Inspire on Purpose Publishing), my co-author, Tim Houlne, CEO of Working Solutions, and I reveal startling statistics about the global labor force and the opportunities that smart executives and entrepreneurs can leverage now to stay ahead of competition.

What is “The New World of Workall about?Shifting business practices and advancements in technology are defining the types of jobs being created and where those jobs can be found.

At the heart of “The New World of Work”are three powerful workforce trends:

  • Work has been fractionalized:Routine work has been broken into small tasks, and companies are hiring fewer full-time resources as they outsource projects.
  • Careers have been virtualized:With cloud technology, work has moved easily from the cube to the cloud. People can work from anywhere, and at any time.
  • Talent has become globalized:The fractionalization of work and virtualization of careers has made talent truly exportable. Forget offshoring; crowd-sourcing means that smart businesses can get talent anywhere, anytime.

For those who embrace “The New World of Work: From the Cube to the Cloud” comes the opportunity to succeed in a world with no boundaries, no buildings, and no fear.

According to the International Labor Organization, as of late 2012, 200 million people are out of work globally—with an estimated 40 million of those unemployed workers in advanced societies including the United States, Japan, and Europe. Yet at the same time, businesses in those nations lament that they are unable to find qualified workers,

While technology has enabled a New World of Work, the speed of business and technological change has outpaced the ability of many workers to adapt, resulting in a mismatch between work and the skill required to fulfill demand. So the jobs are there—in fact, businesses are crying out to fill them; workers just need to gain the necessary skills and attitude to make those jobs their own.

Following is an excerpt from “The New World of Work: From the Cube to the Cloud” highlighting the critical need for new, virtual training options.

Close the Talent Gap

The ultimate empowerment of tomorrow’s workforce will be the self-employment of the freelance worker. The engaged, empowered worker will not only be passionate about her vocation, but actively will seek training, knowledge, and skills to compete on her own terms. Furthermore, the lack of skilled recruits is fueling the desire for a new approach to how businesses typically respond to labor shortages for the specialized jobs they need to fill.

Transform the Learning Experience

Traditional education focuses on preparing an individual for a future career. Schools are building facilities, adding faculty, and increasing costs for the students. However, big changes are required to educate and train students for career positions in the coming years. More knowledgeable workers will be required for future job positions, so transforming the way we learn will require companies to develop workers internally, as they adapt to the new mobile workforce.

The world is demanding change within our public education system, and businesses need to think about helping to prepare the world for a new competitive global workforce. In the past, initial jobs (or jobs acquired right out of school) provided a basis to gain work experience, skills, and job requirements for completing acceptable work product. Conventionally, you earned the job with your prior education or work experience, and you learned the job as you lived it.

Because there will be a huge gap in the knowledge base of the next generation workforce, a new approach to training and education will be needed to encourage those future workers to pursue this path to career success. Companies no longer will be able to rely on the public education system to self-correct the gap in talent. Rather, they will need to rely on internally developed education processes and systems to build the skills into a curriculum specific to their business needs.

Current strategies for educating future workers include the public education system’s preparation of students who then graduate with the skills required to support the knowledge jobs. The challenge of this scenario is that schools are not adapting programs quickly enough to support the demand for the knowledge worker. Secondary education and training requirements are growing faster than the publicly funded school programs, but there still needs to be more suitable alternative approaches to education and training.

One solution to the gap in training a skilled workforce would be to implement certification programs that businesses manage themselves. This would eliminate the economic barrier that traditionally prevents students with little or no financial means, and allow a broader base of talent to complete the curriculum and fill the void. Workers who complete the programs then will have valuable work experience, knowledge, and training to apply to present, as well as future, positions.

So how do you situate yourself or your firm to take advantage of the virtual workforce? Learn to identify talented individuals with the right skills and then invest in their development to create a competitive advantage for your company. It’s a win-win. Companies that embrace the model can hire highly specialized workers on a part-time basis (as opposed to incurring the expense of full-time workers), and those who receive the training will obtain lasting and marketable skills.

Here are some suggested resources for professionals who want to maximize the New World of Work:

1.     If you are interested in the path to become a virtualpreneur, solopreneur, or entrepreneur, there are two great training programs to assist you:

  • The Virtualpreneur University offers a college-accredited curriculum that trains virtualpreneurs on how to better capitalize on the New World of Work through numerous virtual work platforms.
  • For new entrepreneurs who want to build a business roadmap to help them replace their income, we recommend Launch on Purpose It’s the “Preneur Training System” for virtualpreneurs, solopreneurs, and new entrepreneurs.

2.              If you prefer to work for someone else, but need help finding the right destination. Succeed on Purpose has a job retraining and placement arm called Talent on Purpose to train professionals to reinvent their careers. The firm has other virtual training programs available for those who are interested.

Despite high national unemployment figures and constant media hype, there is a flood of work opportunities for professionals who are willing to think differently about their careers and take action to meet this change. Never before have there been so many career options without boundaries or limitations. With career personas, role-based hiring strategies, and virtualpreneur training options, you can capitalize on the New World of Work.

Terri Maxwell is CEO of Succeed on Purpose and SVP of Sales & Marketing Working Solutions. She Maxwell provides game-changing insights to transform businesses, people, and industries. In a career spanning more than 20 years, Maxwell has put her talents to work for large and small companies, and is a consultant to businesses and entrepreneurs seeking to accelerate growth. She has built numerous successful companies, and created a business incubator called Succeed on Purpose Inc. in Irving, TX.

Lorri Freifeld
Lorri Freifeld is the editor/publisher of Training magazine. She writes on a number of topics, including talent management, training technology, and leadership development. She spearheads two awards programs: the Training APEX Awards and Emerging Training Leaders. A writer/editor for the last 30 years, she has held editing positions at a variety of publications and holds a Master’s degree in journalism from New York University.