As the Skill India Mission gains momentum with more and more young people choosing to enroll themselves at Government of India-approved vocational training centres to better their chances of finding jobs of their choice, it is imperative that we inculcate in them the realization that there are never any full stops to learning.
It is vital that we make our youths understand that the only way they may ensure their own employability (and by extension raise their possibilities of getting higher salaries) over a 30-year or more working life is by continuously upgrading their skill-sets to keep pace with changing business demands. And that while the skills they acquire now may be good enough for them to find employment presently, not learning new skills could ensure that there are no takers for them in the job market going forward.
We need to categorically explain to young people that the need to pick up new skills – domain-specific as well as in the sphere of soft skills – at regular intervals assumes greater significance given the increasing threat that automation poses in making redundant several current low-skilled jobs. By also stressing on the fact, in a related context, that even the highly respected World Economic Forum (WEF) has already forecast that many of the jobs that today’s young people may have to do in future have not been invented yet.
Parents of young boys and girls, and society, who play a big part in shaping the career decisions of youths, too, needs to be sensitized to the changing reality of the job market where demand for specific skills may undergo a transformation at very short notice. With skills considered ‘hot’ now, being looked upon, a few years down the line, as of little or no value.
I mention family and society elders because in their capacity as youth influencers, they may contribute immensely in helping the skills fraternity effectively propagate the message of lifelong learning among young people. A boy or girl is likely to be far more inclined to believe that lifelong learning is in their own best interests if this idea is communicated to them through people they trust the most.
The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India, the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), and many state governments have been playing a stellar role in making the skills cause take deep roots in the country. At Orane, we have always considered ourselves privileged to be provided the opportunity to work with the Central and state governments, and organizations like NSDC, etc., in this nation-building endeavour.
As we aim to realize the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s vision of making India the ‘Skills Capital’ of the world, Orane would look forward to the pleasure of collaborating with all leading agencies engaged in promoting skill development to advocate the cause of lifelong learning for being able to effectively leverage the country’s favourable demographic profile to promote inclusive growth in the world’s 2nd most populous nation.
(The author is Co-Founder & CEO of Orane International).