Technology is continuing to increase its capability and speed of change. It also is creating greater connectivity that makes globalization that much more relevant. Consider a few facts:
It took the radio 38 years to reach 50 million users, the TV 13 years, the Internet 4 years.
For every minute, 13 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube; it would take over 400 years to view every YouTube video.
There are more than 13 million articles on Wikipedia in more then 200 languages.
Every second, there are approximately six million Facebook views, two million Google searches, one million YouTube videos viewed, 100 new LinkedIn profiles created, and 47,000 app downloads.Advertisement
Analysts predict there will be $38 billion in annual revenue generated by 2015 in Smartphone and Tablet apps. In 2010 there were over $1.6 billion worth of mobile device purchases. It is estimated that tablets will overtake desktop sales by 2015. Today more people in the U.S. browse the Web from their IPad then from their desktop.
There are businesses that simply did not exist five or 10 years ago. For example, a library without physical books opened in Texas—a $2.4 million project supported and led by County Judge Nelson Wolff called Biblotech that uses only technology and no paper books.
- There are terms that did not exist five to 10 years ago, such as cybersecurity.
This is just a sample of the exponential growth and impact of evolving technology—and the Internet, in particular. This dramatically changing pace of technology has raised the bar globally with regards to competition and given rise to the Knowledge Economy, the digital workplace, and a culture of connectivity.
All of this reminds me of something Thomas Friedman mentioned during the 2012 presidential election. Freidman said that when he wrote The World is Flat, “Facebook didn’t exist (or at least for most Americans), Twitter was a sound, the Cloud was in the sky, 4G was a parking space, LinkedIn was a prison, applications were what you sent to college, and for most people Skype was a typo.” Friedman explains that this has taken the world from connected to hyperconnected.
To be sure, these advances have changed the paradigm of how work. Increased virtual workforce and telecommuting opportunities have altered how we define work teams. Technology also has challenged how we educate and collaborate, with more options for social and mobile learning. Likewise, it has changed how we collaborate.
Bottom line: The 21st century organization will need to be smart, agile, and proactively ahead of its competitors in integrating mobile, social, cloud, and analytic technologies in order to reinvent itself through people, process, and technologies. The question for those working in talent development: How can we help our organizations succeed in this new world.
To discuss more human capital trends and challenges, join me at ATD 2015 International Conference & Exposition for my session W304 - The Perfect Storm: Human Capital Challenges and Opportunities in the 21st Century.