Winning in Today’s World

Our world is changing. The way we work, we learn, we live, is just not the same.

Work is no longer a place you go to; it’s what you do. Mobile technology has changed the way we work, allowing for convenient, flexible workplaces. Yes, the workplace does still exist, but that’s not where all the work gets done. The average employee today puts in 46 minutes of work before they’ve even arrived at the office, and 75% of employers recognise this by giving employees the tools they need to work remotely. “Face time” is now optional.

Age, experience, and competence, are no longer necessarily correlated. What prior generations valued by calling it ‘experience’ was actually nothing but pattern recognition; kids just hadn’t seen enough of life and work to recognize many patterns. This assumption falls flat on the ground today as ‘patterns’ routinely and rapidly change, and an active member of Gen-Y (or Gen-Z) could very well beat you to it by being more in tune with the world.

This is also where universities fail, by keeping students in bell jars and not allowing them to experience reality. Education is no longer just notes from a textbook; it’s a living, breathing entity.

It’s unfortunate that many individuals and organizations refuse to recognize this changing scenario and continue to operate as-is. Companies and professionals alike must learn to change the way they operate, and think in terms of relationships and ecosystems.

Universities will similarly have to learn to walk the ropes of this new world. The importance of experiential learning can no longer be undermined. Learning from books can only help measure how well someone learns, rather than how well they perform. Education has to show something beyond just promise.

So what is ‘winning’ in this new world?

Winning is to live and learn from every moment. To interact with others from different walks of life, to exchange ideas, to participate in the dialogues that shape our world, to claim your turf while you can.

As management guru and futurist Peter Drucker said a couple of decades ago, “I think the educated person of the future is somebody who realizes the need to continue to learn. That is the new definition and it is going to change the world we live in and work in.”