Use of Emerging Transferable Skills

A team of researchers released a very well-conceived study about what transferable skills will be in high demand in the near future; the study is called Future Work Skills 2020 and was published by Institute for the Future. To identify the skills, they derived six drivers of change (in their words): extreme longevity; rise of smart machines and systems; computational world; new media ecology; super structured organizations; and globally connected world. I am not going to discuss these drivers, but they provide a detailed discussion about them in their study.

I decided to label the skills in their study, “Emerging Transferable Skills”; the skills and their definitions are in the table below (in their words only).

Emerging Soft Skills

Sense-Making ability to determine the deeper meaning or significance of what is being expressed
Social Intelligence ability to connect to others in a deep and direct way, to sense and stimulate reactions and desired interactions
Novel & Adaptive Thinking proficiency at thinking and coming up with solutions and responses beyond that which is rote or rule-based
Cross-Cultural Competency ability to operate in different cultural settings
Computational Thinking ability to translate vast amounts of data into abstract concepts and to understand data-based reasoning
New-Media Literacy ability to critically assess and develop content that uses new media forms, and to leverage these media for persuasive communication
Transdisciplinarity literacy in and ability to understand concepts across multiple disciplines
Design Mindset ability to represent and develop tasks and work processes for desired outcomes
Cognitive Load Management ability to discriminate and filter information for  importance, and to understand how to   maximize cognitive functioning using a variety of tools and techniques
Virtual Collaboration ability to work productively, drive engagement, and demonstrate presence as a member of a virtual team

This team of researchers used a compelling way to develop their forecast, so I suggest reading their study if you want to learn more.  In summation, I might add that we are starting to experience some of the driving forces mentioned in the study, including: movement to cloud computing; shift to mobile devices; social media; and big data. They suggest these skills will be in high demand by 2020, so we should begin tooling our workforce with skills they will need for this upcoming demand; our educational institutions should prepare their curriculum to teach these “emerging transferable skills” (and this is discussed in the study under implications).

In my next blog, I will discuss why we should consider “traditional” and “emerging” transferable skills as we apply a skills based approach. The discussion will be centered on properly identifying and assigning skills, so they can be effectively used in planning, building, and presenting your skill set.

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