It seems to me that change is at the very core of what we do in today’s world. Whole industries have been re-imagined, innovations we couldn’t see coming ten years ago are now mainstream fads, and during it all.
We all by now understand the changes that took place in the mobile space, the music industry, medicine, and the defense industry to name just a few. Even education, typically the most resistant to change and latest to the party, has begun a transformation that many are still reluctant to accept.
MOOCs, or massive, open, online courses have started to emerge. They are flipping the model of education upside down and are providing access to millions of people worldwide to learn about topics that have been traditionally available only to students at some of the most prestigious institutions of learning. But, we still don’t know fully what it will mean.
We can assume that colleges will no longer be able to charge price points of $50,000 a year. It also brings to question the value of a 4 year degree if you can develop competencies that are more tailored to specific roles and functions by enrolling in a class when and where you want.
We can also imagine MOOCs having a longer term impact on consulting and in particular leadership development, because the research that drives much of this work is now free, readily available and taught by the professors who have done the work. The model of content being king is quickly eroding.
What we’re learning is that now it’s about application and building experiences to support the content. Consultants are losing their grip on the content and will need to start innovating in their space, or they’ll quickly wind up in the ash pile of history.
Change is here; it’s everywhere and now it’s up to us to re-imagine our own industry and how we go about developing others, manage change and manage people. We can’t sit idly by and wait for things to happen, HR hasn’t traditionally been known for innovation, but neither has education.
It’s time we start doing things differently around here … if we expect different results.