April 11, 2015

Continuous Professional Learning

News of LinkedIn's $1.5B acquisition of Lynda.com has put a spotlight on professional education and continuous learning. Having just completed my MBA, one of the most comprehensive and most expensive forms of professional education and continuous learning, this is a topic that I have a few thoughts on.

1. I will argue that employees with the most potential will always be hungry to learn more. As a manager, I will shy away from hiring someone who doesn't show a willingness to learn and grow. I am a firm believer that as people grow, the firm grows too.

2. Competition is always evolving and the business environment is always changing. Continuous education helps people gain the skills needed to face this changing environment. Think of it like evolution, its not the strongest that survives, but rather it's the one who can learn and adapt that survives.
3. Online platforms and tools are making it easier and more affordable to pursue continuous learning. It levels the playing field so to speak for those who have less resources and who live further away from world-class education centers.

The ever growing problem of "skills mismatch" is making further education a fast growth and lucrative field. More and more people need to supplement their college degrees with courses that will help differentiate and prepare them better for real-world jobs. 

The issue of skills mismatch is something that my group mates in IE Business School and I tried to help provide a partial solution to with the final project that we prepared. Although we parked the project after graduation as we all went back to our respective careers, it is still something that I hope to pursue in the future.

Read more about LinkedIn and Lynda here