Please reply to four of my classmates blog. Please separate replies 1. Governme
Please reply to four of my classmates blog. Please separate replies 1. Government employees that work in classified environments are warned (and monitored) about their online presence. Even though they may personally have social media accounts, they are NOT permitted to utilize them for work, or even let their affiliation be known. That being said, the younger employees are coming to work with years-old social media accounts that they may keep alive, but many choose not to. There has always been a risk associated with connecting a business, school, medical facility or SCADA system online. However, computer hackers of today don’t need to be as smart as they used to… 20 years ago, you needed to know how to code in order to infiltrate a secured system (such as a bank – we will leave the govt. out of this for now). Nowadays, the really tech-savvy hackers have written codes and embedded them in tools that they sell on the Internet to anyone who has the money. This allows the computer hacker of today to easily infiltrate a system with the click of a few buttons. I have always said that computer admins need to be diligent 100% of the time, and hackers only need to be lucky, once. This makes these systems mentioned above extremely vulnerable. Note to everyone reading…. PATCH YOUR SYTEMS WEEKLY. (off the soapbox). Of course the Dept of Defense hires people directly for their digital literacies… mostly. It is important to understand that the Government, and specifically the Dept of Defense, hire for almost any and every type of job you can imagine. Not all require soft skills, not all require digital literacy. At last check, there were over 200 jobs available for hire. Some of them include: lawyer, political advisor, legislative consultant, intelligence analyst, bus driver, electrical engineer, sanitation worker, cafeteria worker, digital network analyst… what I’m trying to say is that there is no way to make a blanket statement on government hiring as each position requires different skills. All of this to say that I agree with John Maloney (2013, Nov) https://jarche.com/2013/11/networks-are-the-new-companies/ who said, “Technically and sociologically there is nothing new. All human organization, including business, always was and always will-be networks. What is new is the old network patterns, centralize, Fordist, authoritarian, are failing. New network patterns are emerging”. All this has really done is make things quicker to access, quicker doesn’t always mean better. After the 9/11 commission report, the Intelligence Community (IC) was told that they needed to find ways to better communicate and collaborate on similar targets so that they could better “connect the dots”. I will say that the means to do this have changed drastically for the better, but the majority of people won’t utilize them. I don’t know why, everyone has a different answer, but as I’ve said many times… it always about money. IC agencies make their money off of the volume of intelligence that they collect and report. No one wants someone else to take the glory, or the money from the budget that justifies their position each year. Networking, whether through digital means, or interpersonal, is the key to knowlege amd collaboration. Kim Parker talked about the role of education and skills learned while on the job. the government requires a 4 year degree, mostly. As I said earlier, there’s no way to make a blanket statement regarding education requirements, as each position has different skills and education necessary. The military that are assigned and return as civillians bring another aspect to the workforce. While a college degree is usually required, years of experience is also permitted for military only. The future will be interesting to watch play out as many more younger people are obtaining college degrees than ever before. Will it be a smart investment? Or will we have higher educated people asking, “would you like fries with that?”
2.The networked workplace is our reality. “It is always on and globally connected. This is where all organizations are going, at different speeds and in a variety of ways” (Jarche, 2011). People are connected throughout the world, and it changes our work and how we work. LinkedIn Global Talent Trends (People Matters, 2019) identified 4 emerging trends in this technology empowering world. The first is the increase in worker soft skills in creativity, persuasion, collaboration, adaptability, and time management. The second is the workers’ desire for increased flexibility on when and where they work. The third is the increase in anti-harassment with establishing a culture of respect. The last one is pay transparency which can build trust.
With advances in technology, another significant trend is the changing nature of jobs. Chopra-McGowan and Reddy (2020) noted that workers’ skills today will not match the jobs of tomorrow, and even newly acquired skills may become obsolete quickly. Rainie (2018) also noted the changing nature of jobs, emphasizing higher-level social and analytical skills. And Karbhari (2021) wrote that remote work, AI, and automation have dramatically changed the skill sets required for the future workforce. Jarche (2017) suggested educators focus on connections between people and ideas over new content and helping people build trust so information is comfortably shared. Who is going to offer worker reskilling? Higher education could play a role in ensuring that employees are educated and trained to perform jobs on the horizon. Higher Education Opportunities
Higher education has an opportunity to be a significant player in developing and implementing strategies to educate the workforce to meet the needs of today and tomorrow. This will require creativity, collaboration, and a willingness to let go of the “way things have always been done.” Karbhari (2021) noted this could provide growth in the higher education market by creating a continuum of knowledge meeting the needs of a wider array of students. Universities could expand their offerings, delivery methods, and class durations to provide greater flexibility for traditional students. In addition, universities could offer education to a new population of students desiring new educational and training programs to prepare them for future jobs. Rainie (2018) spoke of continuous training being essential to career success and new credentialing systems to meet these needs. Smith and Anderson’s (2014) research indicated the current educational system is not adequately preparing workers for the future. Wiley Education Services (2021) found a 64% skills gap based on surveyed employers and highlighted the impact higher education can have by working “with businesses to develop courses and programs that prepare workers for highly valued roles.” All of this points to the opportunities in front of higher education today.
Networked faculty and students also create opportunities for how classes are structured, content covered, and interactions. In a time when flexibility is desired, students have more options in classroom delivery – asynchronous online, synchronous remote meeting, in-person classroom, and variations of those formats. Students have access to more information when doing their work and do not have to go to the library to research. Access to unlimited information provides greater learning potential. As Kelly (2016) noted, the internet allows for unlimited questions and answers. Googling today is an easy way for students to access information. Zoom, Google Meets, and Teams are digital tools allowing for remote meetings. Digital tools offer convenience and flexibility for faculty and students. Tools like Jamboard and Google Docs create opportunities for collaboration among students, faculty, and any combination. If a student misses a class, they can be sent a class recording. Finally, Wiley Education Services (2021) stated that AI could personalize the student journey. Administrators and faculty should consider the ways AI can be used to tailor student support for their educational journey. One example is developing a “coordinated care network” personalized for each student, virtually linking all student services (Venit, 2021). Opportunities abound.
Higher Education Challenges
The networked community and technological revolution also create challenges for the higher education industry. The current environment finds universities scrambling to a virtual setting, facing decreasing enrollment and financial concerns, and providing support services to students (Wiley Education Services, 2021). Taking advantage of the opportunities requires resources the university may not have. The competitive environment for reskilling could be intense. LinkedIn Learning, MOOCs, Amazon, Google, etc., are already entering the business of reskilling their worker or the workforce. Universities are called to think differently about their role in educating the workforce. Higher Ed needs to act swiftly, which is not always in their DNA. However, agile and responsive universities are needed to face these challenges (Venit, 2021). Challenges also exist on the networked faculty and student level. Kelly (2016) wrote about the third age of computation focusing on flows and streams and real-time demand for information. Students may expect an immediate email or text reply from their instructor. Not receiving one within an hour, they may reach out again. Kelly (2016) also talked about the digital age and sharing technologies just one click away. Assessing individual student learning can be tough when papers are shared, solutions are googled, and the networked environment supports continued collaboration. The process of filtering information can be difficult for students. While technology may empower students to share and access more information, they struggle with what is enough information and determining credibility. Finally, students do not all have access to the same level of technology which makes it challenging to provide an inclusive classroom.
Parker and Rainie’s (2020) research showed that many workers contemplate learning as a lifelong commitment and believe additional formal education is a good path for that. These are exciting times for higher education, filled with potential, and according to Esteves (2019), we are just getting started.
3.Personally, what has gotten me through the most challenging times in my teaching career have been my colleagues, other teachers. During tough times, my colleagues have provided a shoulder to cry on, a listening ear, and practical suggestions gathered from years of experience. Teachers who collaborate become networked workers who may exchange teaching materials, teach jointly as a team, share experiences, and reflect as a team (EduSkills OECD, 2020). According to The OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS), more collaboration means more innovative teaching practices, more confident and effective teachers, and more teacher satisfaction (EduSkills OECD, 2020). Kelly (2016) discusses how with automation and technology advancements, computers are and will continue to take over routine tasks, which will free humans to focus on creative, non-routine tasks. Similarly, teachers working together in a network, sharing ideas, will allow them to quickly resolve routine problems and focus their time and energy on innovating and creating. For example, yesterday I was about to create schedule cards labeled with each subject name to post in my classroom schedule. Instead, I purchased a beautiful set on teacherspayteachers.com. This allowed me to focus my time on creating a science lesson on vaccines. “With the right tools, it turns out the collaborative community can outpace the same number of ambitious individuals competing” (Kelly, 2016). This is where school leaders can help by setting up a non-competitive, collaborative culture. It seems that the expression is true, two heads are indeed better than one.
Challenges of networked workers
While there are many benefits to teacher networks, when people are asked to work together, challenges may arise. These may be caused by personality differences, and different goals/ visions. When working in teams, soft skills are important, such as the ability to adapt and collaborate, as LinkedIn’s ‘Global Talent Trends 2019’ report suggests. To address different goals/visions, Donohoo and Mausbach (2021) recommend setting up processes for interdependent goal setting. Another challenge of too many networked workers may be over collaboration. According to Deluce (2019), over collaboration or too many meetings, phone calls, and emails can lead to burnout. Also over collaboration can lead to bottlenecks where decisions cannot be made until everybody weighs in (Cross et al., 2016), thus slowing down work processes. This school year, I am working with 2 other 5th grade teachers. While we have been making many decisions jointly, we are setting up roles so that each teacher is responsible for planning a particular subject/subjects to avoid bottlenecking with too many opinions.
4.When I see “always” I think “never.” I suppose that is not absolute, but to suggest that being online is always positive is not going to work out. Social media has played a role in changing people and certainly their lifestyle, and many platforms have committed day-to-day users (Siddiqui & Singh, 2016). Siddiqui and Singh (2016) reviewed the social media impact on various fields, such as education, business, and society and found positive and negative aspects among each ranging from positive networking and connecting and sharing, to negative hacking, abuse, and privacy. I find these all to be true among these and other fields as well in my experience. What I think is fair to say, and that I agree with, is that it is important to have digital literacy. Bejaković and Mrnjavac (2020) sound that digital literacy is important for the labor market, and their conclusion brings us back to the importance of a new era of knowledge management with meaning interpretation of a great quantity of information that can improve organizations.
Digital literacy is in high demand (Bejaković & Mrnjavac, 2020), and I do require digital literacy. Now, the industry is cyber security, so I do not think that is a profound epiphany. What I have found is the importance of the soft skills that need to couple with digital literacy, and in the most technical of fields it often feels like unicorn hunting. I have had this experience in hard sciences and in computer science hiring, but it continues to remain important to me in my HR processes. There are opportunities with networked individuals that have both digital literacy and soft skills, and there are challenges.
A major opportunity, in my personal experience, that networked workers bring to organizations is their network. The ability to tap the networks of your employees and colleagues to make exceptional hires is significant. In terms of sourcing and finding talent, your best sources are right there. Another opportunity I have found is that networked employees bring diversity to the team, specifically diversity of thought, opinion, and experience. Challenges that I have found with networked employees often revolve around time management. That is, the ability to balance the network with work demands and understanding when it is time for which thing. I think some people think of cyber loafing, a relative old term to describe goofing off on the internet instead of working, as a challenge. I did not find any good research to support cyber loafing as an issue in this regard, but what I have found in my own experience is that people in all different environments will find ways to waste time if they are not happy with work, bored, or just do not want to do the job. This includes environments where phones are not permitted in the facility and computers are tightly monitored, to work at home. I have not personally found a connected thread to the environment or technology being the cause of “cyber loafing,” but there is some support that there is a personality element (Jia et al., 2013). Some of the challenges that the internet brings, such as privacy issues, is an opportunity for new jobs and greater secured transparency. I bet that sounds odd together, privacy and transparency, but when you can properly secure privacy and you can more effectively be transparent. I think there is co-opted opportunity within that challenge, and a silver lining in the labor market opportunity.
As I stated in my title, nothing is always anything.