Digitalisation & Disruption

Keep learning to come out on top!

three attendees of a workshop sitting in front of a wall with notes
  • The knowledge acquired during a person’s training are no longer enough to sustain them for their entire career
  • Lifelong learning is the key to navigating the challenges of digitalisation successfully
  • It is essential for companies to provide the right working environment and a culture that promotes learning
3 minutes to read
With insights from...

Digitalisation has fundamentally changed the world of work. One example is how lifelong learning has become essential for career success. So what do companies need to keep in mind here?

For a great many of us, the dream jobs we had as children no longer exist today. As digitalisation progresses, the way we work has changed dramatically, particularly in terms of how we manage information and communications, and the professions we choose to pursue.

According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), 65% of today’s school children are likely to work jobs that do not even exist yet. And the WEF estimates that by 2025, around 85 million jobs might be completely automated and performed by machines thanks to technological advances. At the same time, this will create 97 million new jobs. This transformation will primarily eliminate low-qualification jobs while creating new jobs that require highly qualified workers.

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symbolic picture: female person with blocnotes Lifelong learning is considered essential to successfully navigating the challenges of digitalisation

Skills with a future

Companies have begun to play a more active role in the areas of occupational re-training and continuing education of their workforces. In addition to acquiring the necessary technical expertise, the following four skills are considered success factors for today’s increasingly digital world of work.

Digital skills
Against the backdrop of accelerating globalisation and rapidly intensifying competition, digital skills are becoming an indispensable part of companies’ successful development. This includes the ability to effectively use digital devices and applications and having advanced technology skills that can promote digital transformations in various business processes and areas.

Digital leadership
Digitalisation requires new leadership models because technology has made its way into every single aspect of business. Managers must be equipped to navigate an increasingly complex and dynamic landscape. This requires that today’s business leaders be able to handle these changes and situations, and that they can recognise the potential benefits of digitalisation. Digital leadership is also often characterised by a more agile corporate organisation and a flexible, decentralised work organisation.

Soft skills
Our work environments are becoming more complex: more and more often, teams are made up of members located in different countries and working across a spectrum of disciplines. In this context, soft skills like emotional intelligence, resilience, and other interpersonal skills are playing a greater role than in the past. They are fundamental to successfully navigating increasingly complex work environments while continuing to drive innovation. At the same time, digitalisation tends to offer employees more freedom in their careers, whereby the ability to communicate and cooperate effectively and to work independently are becoming more important, too.

Learning skills
Lifelong learning generally requires that employees take on more responsibility for their own professional development. The trend is moving towards greater personal initiative to pursue learning tailored to the individual’s needs. This shift is also becoming embedded in today’s professional landscapes. This type of learning also requires good learning strategies, that is, understanding one’s own learning habits and being able to structure one’s own learning process. For this to occur within the context of a company, it is imperative that the right working environment and culture of learning exist.

This is why companies should focus on these four success factors. Feel free to contact me if you would like to discuss the topic further. For a glimpse into Zühlke’s learning culture, I recommend reading this interview with Reto Schmid, Learning & Development Lead.