In today’s world, we embrace technology readily in our everyday life, both inside and outside of the workforce. So why is it that a wariness still exists among employees when it comes to accepting changes at work?
We spend half our lives on social media, on various devices or listening to music, podcasts and shows, using everything from our phones to our fridges. Our children are already growing up in a digitally immersive space with schools and kindergartens introducing devices for learning in the earliest days of their education.
So is the hesitation around automation and AI in the workplace a generational issue? And will our future workforce already be accustomed to engaging and adapting to rapid technology advances? That seems highly likely, but how do we cater to the existing staff pool?
Adapting to technology in our personal lives is often a voluntary, self-guided act and one surrounded by a supportive and similarly-placed audience. So why do the changes in our workplace feel more intimidating and not as well-supported, and what can we do to fix that?
The super-jobs of the future are described as jobs that embrace technology and are comfortable working alongside it to maximise outcomes. And the key to creating the super-job is turning our staff into super-people. Those who are ready to control and drive technology towards better business outcomes, rather than let it control them.
- Higher cognitive skills
- Greater need for soft skills
- Technological skills
Technology is transforming our workplaces fast. Digital operations and automation are growing exponentially, and yet reports show that 70% of company transitions involving technology fail.This is not because of the technology itself, but because of the lack of employee engagement.
Despite the excitement of a new and futuristic workplace, many employees are still wary when it comes to overarching digital changes. Considering it’s been identified that employee engagement is the key to successful change, why are so many companies still getting it wrong?
It is now estimated that our on-the-job skills only last a maximum of 2-5 years. This is even more evident where technology is concerned. As technology is constantly evolving, the workforce needs to be ready, willing and agile enough to embrace and adapt to changes as they arise.
We are moving away from ‘change management’ or even ‘learning culture’ and more towards empowering our employees with a passion for learning that is relevant and exciting to their context within the company. Employees will ultimately want to have a fun experience so will drive this change for themselves.
Prioritising Soft Skills
One of the most powerful tools you can have is to equip your staff to create and carry the right conversations. By doing this, they’ll become advocates for better business outcomes, as well as the kinds of learning they really need. Understanding the type of learners in your organisation will help you do this, and then you can adapt technology to suit them, not the other way around.
Learning and development need to move away from simply being a delivery service and become part of a wider-organisational ecosystem that focuses on strategic alignment with business objectives and performance.
Empowering workers at all levels with the right attitude, mindset and passion for the organisation will drive the success of a business much further than a top-down, hierarchical training system.
We can prepare for the future
At Smartwork, creating super-people is our passion. We want to create life-long learners who are not afraid to embrace the tools they need for their future learning.
We want to encourage a mindset of readiness and adaptability that exists on all levels, and not create, drive or develop change just for the sake of doing it.
To steal a quote from another great mind, ‘Constant learning is to blur the line between personal and professional life’. Because learning shouldn’t be something that just happens at work, school or home, but rather a state of mind that is always present, open and ready to evolve.