In the NewsSeptember 10

Back to School…

Each fall when my kids go back to school I find myself traveling back in time to reminisce when I started High School, as my daughter Faith did this year. It was a big change for me. I remember the excitement and anxiety of the first day. New environment, new friends and an advanced curriculum. The years went by quickly. After college graduation, I thought I would be done with “formal education” for good. I vividly remember a couple of years later realizing how much I could no longer recall from my college experience. It seemed real life events were overriding those academic learnings. It didn’t take me long to realize I was not providing my brain with the nutrients of formal education and enrolled in a post graduate program.

Fast forward to today and I am thankful to have kept an element of continuing education throughout my adult life. 100 years ago they say the knowledge a college graduate had was relevant for maybe 25 years. This makes sense to me because the world advanced at a much slower rate. Back then, a college education might last a person most of their career. Today, it is believed that we have a 100% knowledge turnover approximately every 6 years! The world has sped up significantly. So I ask you the following questions: How are you staying relevant? Do you have a robust educational budget for your company? Is it understood by the c-suite that the sharp, new hire they made will be losing their effectiveness at a rate of 17% per year? This knowledge turnover is alarming to me and should motivate us to increase the training and development budgets significantly at our company!

Today, we pay for many levels of training from CPR classes to MBA’s. We have at least two educational events taught by “subject matter experts (SME’s)” within our company each month. We have people plan out their needs for the next five years and build a proactive program to accommodate as much of it as possible. The old saying was, “I’m not any smarter than my competition but I outwork them”. Today our goal is to both outwork and outsmart our competition!

Mike Novakoski
President & CEO, Elzinga & Volkers Construction Professionals
Author, Become Unmistakable