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The Skills Gap: Real Reason for Unemployment

With the fast-evolving technology, there's a mindset among people that technology will take over skills and hence there will be no jobs left! Unemployment is what they fear. But is it really the problem? In an article by Harvard Business Review, Employees aren't Just Whining - the Skills Gap is very much real, and it is the #1 reason for unemployment. Not jobs but skills are vanishing!

What is the skills gap?

Here, we will try to explore why skills are important in the “working world” today and why they can’t be ignored. We live in the Information Age. This means that you have to know a whole lot of different things. Unfortunately, everyone in the world, from university students to regular workers, are all beginning to realize that with the incoming “Robotic Age”, there will be no jobs left. This has resulted in a skills gap where people know only a few things which they consider as very important. But the fact is that those few things are less important than they used to be.

Apart from the commonly hyped hard skills, soft skills are something that helps you grab an opportunity. But students and young professionals tend to ignore these soft skills and depend only on their hard skills to get the best of the best opportunity possible!

These are the 3 most important skills that are required to work in any organization today:

  1. Communication Skills

  2. Leadership Skills

  3. Soft Skills

And 70% of the young professionals ignore them since they’re categorized as “Soft Skills”! This is the main cause of the development of the “Skills Gap”.

Who does this impact?

Technology is a force of nature, like the ocean wave that slowly and steadily takes a piece of land away with it. The new wave of technology will be experienced by those who make the technology and those who judiciously will utilize it. But its adverse effects will also penalize those who are neglecting it right now. The technology Age demands a balance of both hard skills and soft skills in life. When this balance is disrupted, “Skills Gap” comes into action.

And this is not only limited to India. It is one issue that the entire world is facing but we Indians are still on top. In fact as per International Labour Organization, by 2030, India is staring at a 29 million skill deficit by 2030! Now, this is huge and a topic of concern for the entire nation.

How to solve the skills gap?

What are the skills of our students and younger generations that are dying and why? Most of the hard skills that students develop add a nice sparkling badge to their resume but not to their personality. As a result, when they sit in an interview, they have a decorated resume and project to showcase but nothing “extraordinary” they have in their personality which they could show off!

Remember how popular that one school friend or college friend used to be who used to take part in debates and speeches? Not only was he learning to develop his fluency and personality skills, but also he was overcoming general fears like “Stage-Fear” and “Audience-Fear”.

Amidst the pandemic, when most of us switched over to Zoom Calls and Google Meet, we tend not to switch on our video camera because we still have that “Audience fear” buried deep down inside us.

The only way to deal with this Skill Gap is to get started on the journey of learning “Soft Skills” and go on giving both Hard-Skills and Soft-Skills equal priority.

In case we neglect it now, in the coming “Robotic Age”, Robots will be far more superior to us in both Soft Skills and Hard Skills. They’ll be that perfect communicator, presenter, motivator, and boss. Would we be blaming technology then?

But there’s still one thing that we can inculcate in ourselves which Robots would never be able to do. We can enhance our personality and be the next-generation leaders - only then we can rule over robots and ensure that they won’t rule us!

Let’s get started on developing soft skills now by stop calling them “Soft Skills” anymore! This will make them much more worthy and learnable. In turn, our balance of both the skills (soft skills and hard skills) would be achievable.

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