TAKING of Your CHARGE CAREER PATH: A Future Trend of the Workforce

By DiMattina, Cara; Ferris, Lisa-Anne | Techniques, March 2013 | Go to article overview

TAKING of Your CHARGE CAREER PATH: A Future Trend of the Workforce


DiMattina, Cara, Ferris, Lisa-Anne, Techniques


Workplace trends portray relevant information regarding the present and future of the workforce and its members. These trends signify changes within the workplace regarding I hi ? ormante, retention, satisfaction and many other areas that affect the individual unployee, as well as the organization and industry as a whole. Trends can be seen in statistical reports and observations, as well as in conversations between educational institutions and business and industry. Presently, one of die trends the workforce is experiencing today is the shift from a collective sense of work to a more individualistic meaning of work that diminishes much of the relationship between an employee and their organization.

The gold watch used to be a symbol of the appreciation a business had Tor its relationship with committed, long-term workers as they entered retirement. This symbol no longer carries the same meaning. Over time, globalization, technology, recessions and other events and circumstances have affected this relationship. In a global economy, business is facing increased pressure to find financial success by reducing expenditures and maximizing the value of their investments. On die other hand, individuals have greater access to opportunities and technology that allow them to communicate and develop their interests, value», knowledge and skills. The responsibility towards one another that the gold watch symbolized has shifted, and both individuals and businesses are focusing primarily on their own development.

So what does this mean for present and future employees? Individuals will be far more responsible for denning their own meaning in work and developing their personal career paths. That statement means several things. In addition to individuals taking it upon themselves to learn iob-sjjecific skills, employability skills also known as 21st-century skills or soft skills' and transferable skills, they will also need to communicate their unique Strengths, knowledge and abilities to future employers as if they were their own corporation.

21st-century Skills

It's fairly common in the field of career and technical education (CTE) to discuss the development of job-specific, employability and transferable skills. Employability skills are skills that workers inherently bring to the work environment. These skills include punctuality, teamwork, professionalism, creativity and so on.' Transferable skills are skills that can be taken and adapted from one job to the next, such as knowledge of technological advances within the workplace.

The new and added complexity influencing how these skills are garnered is the fiscally tightened economy. Businesses are and will continue to struggle in this new economy. To survive, they will demand a more capable worker, but will be less apt to provide the resources to create this worker. The responsibility will fall to the individual to acquire and retain these skills by seeking out training opportunities, attending workshops, utilizing" internet resources or drawing on other sources to develop themselves. Developing these skills independently of the organization's training and development exercises the concepts of self-directed and lifelong learning. Self-directed learning occurs when individuals take initiative and responsibility for their learning. Lifelong learning suggests that individuals will take this initiative over the course of their lifetimes. The value of an individual's commitment to these concepts will remain integral as the individual develops a career path. The concept might sound bleak, but it is not; it provides individuals with the opportunity to design and create unique career paths suited to their strengths and weaknesses. It allows individuals to take their career paths into their own hands and become diverse and globally competitive members of the economy.

CTE Makes a Difference

Looking towards this future, the CTE student and future employee will be far more prepared and capable of adapting to this environment, especially compared to those in general education tracks. …

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