To thrive in the future workforce, both employers and employees need to get comfortable with uncertainty. Rapidly changing technology is shifting the way we work and the skills required to achieve success.
Today’s economy calls for us to embrace flexibility, to commit to a lifetime of learning, and to creatively approach problem-solving. Simply put, today’s economy pushes us to be agile; the economy of the future demands it.
Unfortunately, our education system is behind the curve in preparing students for the new Age of Agility. Without profound and rapid changes to how we educate our children, this nation faces the real possibility of falling behind countries with more nimble and more innovative education systems. It is time for our communities – business leaders, education experts, and policymakers – to confront the skills gap and help reshape education-to-employment pathways. It is going to take all of us, working together, to successfully navigate the future of work.
“(Education needs to be) preparing students for jobs that don’t exist and to use technologies, sciences, and methods that we haven’t even discovered yet, to solve problems that we haven’t identified.”
“We need to make sure our schools are educating kids and their parents on what is driving our economy, and their future opportunities, and prepare them for that.”
Human Resource Assistant Senior Manager, Subaru of Indiana Automotive
“We have not solved the technical training problem of the last generation, even as we are very quickly moving into this new AI and robotics space.”
Vice President for Human Resources Operations
“Businesses, skills providers, non-profits and governments at all levels have to find new ways to work together to ensure people are equipped to succeed in rapidly changing workplaces.”
Director of Global Public Policy
“High schools and colleges in the U.S. are not turning out graduates with the mix of technical expertise, soft skills, problem- solving ability and communication skills that companies like Toyota need.”
Assistant Manager, Toyota North American Production Support Center
“We need to hire people who can maintain and work on this high-tech equipment we’re putting into the factories to keep up with growing worldwide demand for our products.”
“There used to be a more or less steady state. Now it is just constant change. The ability to adapt and change is the key to the future.”
Vice President and Business Information Officer
“In the coming years, pressure to reexamine the ways in which companies identify and develop talent will only accelerate as forces like AI and automation reshape entire industries and professions.”
CEO and Co-Founder, General Assembly
“We’re looking for candidates who are passionate and driven to succeed in their particular area, who learn new concepts and technology quickly, who are curious and innovative and who have a strong sense of integrity.”
Senior Vice President of Recruiting and Human Relations
“Collaborate, Innovate, Accelerate is our strategy at The Boeing Company. Revolutionary advances in technology have translated to amazing new products in our businesses, which highlights the need for changes to the education and training of our future workforce. We need these changes to start earlier and to include both technical and soft skills, such as critical thinking, problem solving and working with diverse teams.”
David P. Eddy
Site Director of Boeing Colorado
The Age of Agility Report
In fall 2017, America Succeeds released The Age of Agility: Education Pathways for the Future of Work to call attention to the misalignment between what is being taught in schools—both K-12 and higher education—and the knowledge, skills, and behaviors required by the modern workplace.
Forward-thinking corporate executives, academics, technologists, and economists may not often agree, but on this they are virtually unanimous: the disruption we’re just beginning to experience will rival any technological upheaval in history in both scope and impact.
The report presents compelling data about this seismic shift. It shows how some companies are adapting. It explores how each one of us will have to take ownership of a lifetime of learning, a constant process of retraining and reeducating ourselves as the world around us lurches into the uncertain future.
The National Tour
In the report, America Succeeds committed to partnering with local stakeholder groups in states across the country to facilitate community conversations, and ultimately actions, on what the Age of Agility means for restructuring the way we deliver education.
With the support of our tour co-hosts, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, and our national sponsors we launched the Age of Agility national tour in April 2018. The inaugural event was held in Arizona, before continuing on to Kansas and Missouri, New Mexico, Illinois, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Idaho, Arkansas, and New Jersey. The national tour wrapped up with a final event in Washington, D.C. in January 2019.
Each summit was designed to generate actionable policies, strategies, and tactics to improve education locally, plus provide open-source content to share in the Age of Agility Resource Bank (launching Spring 2019.)