World Youth Skills Day and the Skills of Future Leaders
Our youngest generation will inherit a much-changed world to the one we currently live in. World Youth Skills Day aims to remind us all how important it is we protect and teach them the right skills to thrive in that future.
Renaix are on the front line of generational employment support, and we’re proud to have helped graduates and qualified financial students enter the workforce with confidence. However, we all need to make sure we’re doing everything we can to prepare our next generation for a different world to the one we inherited.
From digital nativism to the metaverse, tech skills to sustainability, we all have a unique part to play in protecting our collective futures and leaving the world a better place. There is much work to be done, hence why World Youth Skills Day exists!
“While the youth population grew by 139 million between 1997 and 2017, the youth labour force shrank by 58.7 million.
Designated by the General assembly in 2014, the World Youth Skills Day is an opportunity for young people, technical and vocational education and training institutions and public and private sector stakeholders to acknowledge and celebrate the importance of equipping young people with skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship.”
The importance of World Youth Skills Day in light of the pandemic cannot be understated.
- “ILO estimates show that globally, youth employment fell 8.7 per cent in 2020, compared with 3.7 per cent for adults, with the most pronounced fall seen in middle-income countries”.
- “Young women have been particularly hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic as compared to young men”.
- “The decline in employment caused by the COVID-19 crisis has not been compensated by returns to education and training. Hence, the NEET rate has risen in many countries and remains higher than before the crisis”.
- “Training was interrupted for 86 percent of apprentices and 83 percent of interns/trainees”.
- “The youth population will grow by more than 78 million between 2021 and 2030. Low income countries will account for nearly half of that increase. Education and training systems need to respond to this challenge” (all sources from the UN).
With the above in mind, the International Labour Organisation noted a few key infrastructural and financial support elements that must be addressed in their report Skills development in the time of COVID-19:
- Lack of general and technological infrastructure.
- Lack of effective and familiar distance learning platforms.
- Lack of staff capacity to support distance learning through quality pedagogical resources.
- Financial resource constraints.
So like many things, the youth skills drop off workaround – and how we all improve the opportunities for young people – comes down to tech, staff, and resources.
Luckily, organisations around the world are making up for the COVID-related shortfall, and taking responsibility for providing the next generation with the skills to succeed and thrive. Here are some examples!
The British Council in South Africa
“Our Skills programmes in South Africa have been largely centred on building networks between South Africa and the United Kingdom, strengthening institutions and promoting dialogue between government, education and industry to deliver a quality Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) provision in order to promote positive outcomes for young people”.
The British Council on one example of cross-border pilot schemes to help younger people gain the skills and access to employer networks.
PwC – Upskilling the world’s youth
PwC have partnered with Unicef to support Generation Unlimited – a movement to help young people transition in the workplaces of the future, equipped with the skills needed to excel in those environments.
World Economic Forum – The Jobs Rest Summit
As part of the JRS, the WEF released a guide on how to upskill Gen Z and engage them in a post-pandemic workplace. In it, guidance pivots from how employers can engage Gen Z priorities within the workplace, to the particular learning styles and methods of younger generations.
And, in a final word to our youth market – here are the skills and leadership qualities that the employers of today need for the leaders of tomorrow.
- Emotional Intelligence – “By building emotional intelligence, leaders can self-reflect and recognize their impact on others — to lead with humility and integrity”.
- Learn how to give, and take, feedback – “Giving constructive feedback helps individuals grow by learning how they can improve and by reinforcing the activities they are doing well. This ultimately helps them achieve both personal and organisational goals”.
- Technological Intelligence – “From analytical reasoning to artificial intelligence, cloud computing to UX development, you’re going to need to know how best to exploit these technologies and utilise them in ways that leverage the best chances for success in business”.
- Cognitive flexibility – “Leaders who have cognitive flexibility are able to incorporate different thinking strategies and mental frameworks into their planning, decision-making, and management of day-to-day work”.
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