Let's face it - we feel like this from time to time with distance learning

This week’s blog answers the question of what job skills can be developed for work through distance learning. 

It continues some of my other blogs such as identifying the best practices for distance learning.

The image I chose reminds me that we must take into consideration others on the other end of the call.

I know I’ve felt this way at some point in this quarantine as I’m sure you have as well.

Nonetheless, everybody is doing the best they can.

During our COVID-19 crisis, we’ve seen and heard many people who have lost their jobs.

We’re making adjustments, as this these times are unlike any other we’ve experienced.

Not only must students in academia use distance learning for an extended period, but our society must help those unemployed gain new job skills.

We’re not preparing our children for the future of work.

The PwC Network published a study of over 40,000 students polled online in over 150 countries where they felt like their education is not preparing them with the skills they need to get jobs.

What’s even scarier is nearly four in ten desire a career that does not reside in their community. 

I’m not sure how you feel about this, but it bothers us to no end that businesses and the community have realized education does not prepare students for the future of work.

That’s why the time is now to bridge the gap between academia and business.  

Before we can go further into this discussion, a big realization must occur.

Courses teach content, while skills are embedded in the delivery of the material.

Let’s face it; we would think that courses teach skills and subjects. In theory, yes, it should.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t. 

Courses use certain traits of job skills, allowing a person to practice them, but technically does not create them.

However, the way the instructor teaches the content develops and builds the skills. 

Now you probably think if that’s the case, then how can one develop job skills in distance learning?

Especially when instructors have not been adequately trained to maximize learning in distance learning.

More important, what job skills can be developed through distance learning?

These are questions that everyone should ask themselves during this crisis.

6 Job Skills that Students Can Develop For Work

Thankfully, opportunities can arise even in a crisis. While scouring the internet to find and develop better solutions to distance learning, we’ve found six skills that students can prepare for work.

Self Discipline (because of having better time management)

When students attended school, they had to know when class began and ended. Distance learning shows no difference.  Those who prepare for education take the time and build it.

This results in a more efficient student who turns out to a higher productive employee capable of handling tasks given to them.

Soft Skills (from having to communicate clearly due to distance)

Distance learning can cause some frustration unless there is clear and consistent communication between the instructor and the student. During this exchange, all participants must be precise as to eliminate any confusion.

Putting this into today’s workforce perspective, the clearer you are on what you are saying, the better the products will sell, and the more efficient the organization will become. 

Creativity (becomes better when the instructor requires creativity)

It’s up to the instructor who can provide creative approaches for their classes. Students not only enjoy the change of pace, but it activates their creativity, thus helping them broaden their perspective.

In today’s workforce, we must work locally but think globally if companies plan to continue improving their profitability.

Technical job skills (troubleshooting, product improvement)

Technology continues to advance at a rapid rate, thanks to AI, Big Data, and automation.  Through these developments, employees always try to finagle themselves through the changes.

Students also share similar experiences in distance learning.  When there are platform improvements, glitches may appear where the students must bypass a problem.  Sometimes, their understanding of technology could lead to improvements for the instructor or themselves.

In either case, technical job skills remain a key skill. 

Digital Transformation (business process, business model, domain, and cultural/organizational)

Digital transformation is creating or modifying new experiences in a business process or customer experience that assists in changing market requirements. 

With digital transformation in schools, the evolution of creating and sustaining good engagement produces a more effective education system.

Distance learning serves as an example where students can learn because of a global crisis. They learn through platforms that permit them to receive the information they need even though classes are not held in school.

Self-directed learning 

The secret to any successful entrepreneur lies in their thirst for knowledge. Independent learning goes from “crayon to career,” and those who strive for excellence are those that are autonomous learners.

Building for a better tomorrow

Today’s uncertainty has yielded much worry and rightfully so, but we must look through the global pandemic for moments that will produce success.

Distance learning, albeit far from perfect, provides students with the chance to receive their education even though schools are closed. Should you look beyond the primary platform, you’ll see the prospect for students to gain excellent workforce skills while learning content. That’s the basic fundamental to employee success, and if a student utilizes it, they will be building a better tomorrow.

Do you need assistance in helping employees or students develop job skills for work?

Set up a conference call and let’s turn those diplomas into dollars!

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