The world of work is undergoing dramatic changes before our eyes. While geographical and industry-specific particularities might exist, the macro shift in today’s open talent economy is global and applies to almost every industry sector. It requires employers and employees to come to terms with a new environment, in which flexibility and adaptability have priority over job security and long-term (if not lifelong) employment, structured environments, and standardized roles and responsibilities.
Although we cannot predict with certainty the types of jobs that will exist in the future, we know that today’s students will need a variety of skills, “21st century skills.” However, these are skills that our students need today. Knowing this, we must ask ourselves what are the best ways to provide all students with authentic, unique, and innovative learning experiences that will foster the development of these essential skills? How can we prepare students for jobs which may not exist yet in our ever-changing world?
The world of work is changing rapidly thanks to emerging technology, increased automation and predictive analytics. As safety professionals, we must strive to understand how technology such as drones, robots, automated vehicles and artificial intelligence are altering traditional job functions, changing expectations and contributing to business performance. We also must explore how these technologies can improve safety while also addressing their potential to expose our workers to new hazards.
The term work redefined reflects changing workplace dynamics, which includes a growing role for gig workers (think Uber or Lyft), a more diverse workforce that encompasses multiple generations, races and genders, and the continued shift from manufacturing to service industries.
People are living longer, and many are working longer due to economic or lifestyle factors. As safety professionals, we need to recognize some of the characteristics that define each generation and use that information to engage each group differently where possible. By understanding and respecting the needs of these different groups, we can help them thrive and contribute in their own way to our efforts to create safe, healthy workplaces.
It is also important that we seek ways to incorporate differences related to culture, race and gender rather than try to mitigate them. Embracing these differences is an opportunity to help all employees have a voice in decisions that affect them.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PERSONAL AGILITY IN THE CHANGING WORLD OF WORK
With the world of work changing at an alarming pace, organisations are questioning how they can equip themselves for this shift. The current crisis is a stark reminder of the volatile, uncertain and changing world of work that we are living through in the modern age. It has primed our concern about the fragile nature of employment in a service dominated, inter-connected and rapidly changing economy. And it has certainly accelerated our thinking and practices regarding new and innovative ways of working. It is not just about tools and practices… it’s more personal than tha.t And, as COVID-19 is proving, automation and technology are not the only forces at play in shaping the new world of work. Healthcare, climate change, globalization, talent scarcity, wealth distribution and demographics are among the other forces at play in influencing the future of work. The clear message from these trends, and what being widely experienced right now, is that we must learn to adapt to these rapidly changing times and circumstances in the new world of work. New tools and practices will help but there is a more fundamental mindset and skillset required – both of which we already possess as human beings. The difference with today’s context is that we need to be increasingly aware and conscious of these skills in a more deliberate and front-of-mind way than ever before.
ADOPTING A FUTURE OF WORK MINDSET (AND SKILLSET)
So, what are the adaptive skills and attributes of those who thrive (rather than just cope) in the changing world of work? The motivation behind researching these attributes and skills was simply to help people take more positive control of their own path in an ever-changing work and career environment – and to be more mindful of the practical skills needed to do so. The essence of these Personal Agility skills and attributes is summarised as follows:
- Being Purposeful – having an outlook, attitude and bias for intention and action. Being clear about what you are about and why, underpinned by a core set of personal values and beliefs that help bring focus and direction in both the short and longer term.
- Having a Learning mindset – an openness to learning and to new perspectives, to developing new skills, experimentation and seeing opportunities for growth. As well as having a growth mindset, the adapters were resourceful and creative in learning new skills.
- Open to change – being positively oriented to change rather than naturally resistant to it – seeing change as normal and as a growth opportunity rather than a threat. Being ‘change-able’. Building resilience and being able to bounce back and deal with changing and unwelcome circumstances
- Empowered – motivated towards taking action and responsibility, being accountable for your own path, development and decisions, and accepting that they may not always work out as planned
- Orientation to engage and work with others – being prepared to build relationships, collaborate and positively deal with different and diverse perspectives and opinion. We simply need other people in one way or another to succeed in the future of work.
While of course it helps to have the right culture and leadership for these skills to flourish, they are ultimately individual, learnable skills that we can develop in ourselves and in others if we are all to thrive in uncertain times.
5 WAYS THE FUTURE OF WORK IS CHANGING, DUE TO CORONAVIRUS
The unexpected entrance of COVID-19 is sending shock waves through the enterprise, particularly with the way people work. Here’s how this could affect our future. The novel coronavirus has acted as a reset button for organizations. This reset button is showing professionals that we can easily work from home, which will completely change the future of work in a variety of ways.
- Permanently flexible future: “It’s obvious at this stage that remote working will be viewed with entirely new importance post-COVID-19,” There will be a significant, permanent, transition to more remote working—even when COVID-19 clears, this new normal will be sustained by fears of the next pandemic.
- Prioritization of work-life balance: While working from home is both convenient and comfortable, it can be difficult for professionals to separate home and work life. “With remote working becoming a new norm, and the expected ‘stickiness’ of this new paradigm as outlined above, balancing accessibility with the pressure to be ‘always on’ (self-inflicted or otherwise) will be a challenge.”
- Movement toward agile work: As teams become more separate with remote work, many will begin collaborating with other employees, especially since online collaboration tools make connections easier.
- Increased expectations from employees: Gen X has more life and professional experience that younger generations will learn from–and which will imminently become hygiene factors in choosing an employer (e.g., flexibility, remote working set up, commitment to work-life balance, etc.).”
- Trend toward sustainability: Remote work takes the mental and physical stress out of going into an office, but it also has a significant impact on the environment, which people will begin to take note of.
To conclude – These five shifts are significant, so companies must prepare for the upcoming changes if they want to stay afloat. One of the ways that organizations can ensure business continuity is by having a solid networking infrastructure in place to enable their employees to stay connected and be productive while working remotely. This means having the systems and tools to ensure employee access to corporate resources and applications, just as they would if they were working in the office. The experience should be consistent, seamless, and secure, which is why implementing a network built on modern, cloud-native principles that can operate with best-of-breed solutions is so important and, frankly, a critical part of preparing for any type of disruption, whether it be a natural disaster or public health crisis.
- Article on How the Future of work will look like in 2021
- Article on Changing World that requires an Innovation Approach
- Ted Talk on the Changing World of Work
- Ted Talk on the Future of Work
- Video on How the World of Work is Changing
“The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” – Albert Einstein
UPDATE ON SKILL DEVELOPMENT & TRAINING
SKILL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS (SPONSORED BY CAPGEMINI AND MSDF)
The Campus to Corporate ‘Skills Training Program’, supported by Capgemini currently has 1353 2nd year students in the Aptitude program with 496 students mapped to FFE’s training partner Ethnus, and 857 students with Focus Academy for Career Enhancement (FACE). The program will come to an end by 31st June once students complete the post-assessment.
Out of the current 3rd-year scholars supported by MSDF (1257), 720 students have enrolled in the Coursera program and 558 students had enrolled in the Hi-Touch English program by eAge Tutors which got completed by June 1st week. Additionally, 862 students are going through Mock Interviews with Ethnus.
FLY – FFE has launched the FLY (Finding the Leader in You) program for FFE Scholars from May 2021. A pilot batch was organized in Nov/Dec 2020 for around 60 students. Based on the feedback of the students, FFE joined hands with CMI (Competitiveness Mindset Institute Inc) to conduct the FLY program as a full-fledged course trying to cover 1000 students this year from the 1st and 2nd year of study.
This is a 12 days program covering 5 pillars of the competitiveness Mindset
- Taking Initiative
- Problem Solving
The 3rd and 4th batches were conducted on May 10th and May 24th.
SRIP -12 3rd year FFE scholars from various disciplines are currently enrolled in the SRIP 2021 (Summer Research Internship Program) conducted by IIT Gandhinagar. This is an online internship where every student has been identified by a mentor for a project chosen.
The projects include:
Android app for archaeozoological research Navigation, Path planning and Control of Multi-robot systems Develop a Secure Domain Name System Modelling of DNA nanodevices with membranes Calculations of adhesive force between solid and liquid droplets Radiation hardened processor design Scenario generation for Sustainable Technology Development Programming oriented Math-Art Work
In the current graduating Cohort (2019-20), 923/1023 students (90%) are employed (711 secured jobs and 214 opting for higher studies) and 98/1023 are seeking employment (11%). 41 are awaiting confirmation from the company on the DOJ. Rest have joined.In the 2020-21 graduating cohort (current final year), 590/891(66%) have gained jobs (428 have secured jobs and 162 are opting for higher studies) and 301/891 are seeking employment (34%).12 candidates of the 2020 graduated cohort were placed in O9 solutions, Bangalore in March through FFE.Companies like Geberit, Capgemini, KPMG, Trane Technologies have shown interest to offer Placement opportunities for 2020 and 2021 graduating cohorts.
Below are toppers in the Coursera training program. They have been issued with gift vouchers, based on their performance. Congratulations to all of you!
- Chethan B Mali, BMS College, Bangalore
- Kaushal Dhanani, Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University, Gandhinagar
- Jeevan B M, National Institute of Technology, Suratkal
- Omprakash Singh, Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology, Nagpur
- Tamendra Kumar Sahu, National Institute of Technology, Durgapur
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