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Tags » capability
  • Moving from Skills to Capabilities

    Jeff Young
    Jeff Young on May 16, 2010
    Tagged in: learning, education, change, capability

    It used to be that we prepared ourselves for our future by gaining skills for our lives and the workplace.  In a conversation I had recently I found another important distinction:  That in today’s world when we can no longer know what the future brings, we need to become more capable of responding to challenges.  The difference between capabilities and skills, in my mind, is that skills are about being competent in what you do

    Increasing your capability has more to do with who you are being.  It is more of a measure of what you have inside of you that you can bring to bear on your situation and the likelihood of you being successful.  It has to do with the less tangible aspects of your character, resiliency, attitude, and eagerness to learn and do what it takes to be successful.  To adequately prepare for our future, we need to shift our attention from just adding to the content of what we know  and the skills we have (both of which will soon be outdated) toward strengthening our capability and resolve to adapt.

  • Shift Happens: How Can We Prepare for our Future?

    Jeff Young
    Jeff Young on May 12, 2010
    Tagged in: learning, change, capability

    A colleague of mine shared a popular YouTube video with me.  It’s called “Shift Happens” and you can view the video by following this link: 

    Shift Happens Video

    He offered it because it highlights a central theme of mine that economic discomfort we are experiencing is not just a recession, but a symptom of much larger changes and challenges facing us.  These changes are reaching a point where they are breaking many underlying assumptions we have about learning and education.  My favorites among the facts highlighted by this video are:

    • The amount of technical information generated in our world is doubling every 2 years.   For students starting a 4 year degree, half of what they learned in their first year of study will be outdated by their 3rd year of study!
    •  The Top 10 in-demand jobs in 2010 did not exist in 2004.
    • We are currently preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist.  Using technologies that haven’t been invented.  In order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet.
    • The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that today’s learner will have 10-14 jobs…   By the age of 38.
    • 1 in 4 workers has been with their employer less than one year.  1 in 2 has been there less than 5 years.

    Are our schools and universities adequately preparing us and our children for our future?  When I saw this video, my doubts were dramatically increased.  If our schools and universities aren’t adequately preparing us, who will?