“There is no EASY button!” – Futurist Jim Carroll
A faster world has led to a culture in which people seek faster solutions – and often cut corners in order to get wherever they are trying to go.
The result that is organizations often scramble to come up with disruptive, innovative strategies without really taking the time to think them through and implement them – and expect to achieve a complete right turn in an instant (that fails to happen.) They try to master the complex process of faster time to market but in doing so, circumvent too many crucial steps. They pursue efforts to flatten their management and reporting structure but fail to realize that achieving massive culture change takes time. I see this happening all the time, and it is a significant and real challenge that companies must face.
Take the issue of workforce skills in the manufacturing sector: right now, there is no shortage of actual jobs, but there is a crushing lack of skills given the advanced knowledge that is required. This is not your granddad’s machine shop! Years ago, a client observed that “the education level of our workforce has increased so much….it’s almost as if machinists in this industry do trigonometry in their heads!”
The fact is this: the future of manufacturing involves advanced skills and capabilities – and yet, many have not invested where it truly matters – it’s all about automation, AI, robotics, 3d printing, all of which involve totally different skills on the shop floor. The sector has come to think that they can quickly throw together a few courses and programs to elevate the knowledge of their existing and future workforce – but it takes a lot more than this type of simplistic approach. There is a MASSIVE investment required in workforce training that must be undertaken – there is no EASY button!
People do the same thing. When confronted by difficult personal circumstances, they often reach for a solution that seems to offer a quick way out. They fall prey to messages of simplicity, speed, effortless effort – with the result that hucksters, con artists, and the ethically challenged easily find and exploit these speed-obsessed, vulnerable individuals.
In my lengthy lists about the ‘Rules of the Future,’ I’ve long tried to stress that the future takes hard work. Often, you must have patience and take things one day at a time – trying to rush through your voyage will cause you to lose sight of the valuable lessons and guidance you might learn along the way.
Stop reaching for the EASY button – find the one that reads “Put in the work!”