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Bob Dylan sang, “For the times when they change.” This is what I thought of when I read that Google has announced it will offer six-month courses to give people the skills they need to get in-demand jobs . The costs? Amazing $ 300. I can only say: "Over time."
Like Alibaba's CEO Jack Ma, I started my career teaching English. In 2008, I saw the writing on the wall with the changing market and reinvented myself. I read, listened, saw, attended, and recorded every book, CD, and seminar I could get my hands on to prepare for the second half of my career.
What frustrated me about the educational process was how slow it was to adapt to our rapidly changing world. Outside the school walls, the internet, smartphones and social media have changed every aspect of our society. In the classroom, however, it was the same old stuff.
Then Covid-19 hit us like a ton of stones and the gloves were off.
Cue the entrepreneur, or in this case, Google.
Apple has turned the music industry, the cell phone industry, and the headphone industry on its head and now plans to take over the eyewear industry in 2021. In order not to be outdone, Google decided to take over the university monopoly.
Related: 3 Ways Higher Education Must Adjust For A Post-Crisis World
That's big. It's a $ 1.9 trillion industry. If Google can save only 1%, we're talking about $ 10 billion. I have no doubt that other companies would sit up and take notice if they succeeded. I'm sure the people in boardrooms across America and overseas are watching the biggest companies and waiting to see if they should develop their own courses.
It makes sense. Until now, a high school graduate went to college or university, graduated, and then applied to various companies. Then they got a couple of interviews and ended up getting a job if they were lucky.
Only one problem: we live in a world of change that is moving at breakneck speed. According to NASA acting administrator Robert M. Lightfoot Jr., what you learned as a freshman is already out of date by the time you're a junior in college.
Google wants to kill two birds with one stone. First stone: You develop people who you consider necessary for your industry in the coming years. Second stone: inflate higher education far. While universities used to stand out from emerging education companies like Udemy and classes went online through 2021, they have waved the white flag and admitted that many classes can be taught online.
Entrepreneurs should be happy about it. Remember, we are talking about a $ 1.9 trillion industry that for over a century was controlled by colleges and universities that needed spacious land, attractive facilities, dormitories, administration, and professors. That's going to change.
Here are five lessons business owners should learn from this:
1. A small piece of a large cake can be very filling
Gary Halbert, the late great copywriter, once said that if he could have a competitive advantage over anything else it would be "a hungry crowd." Parents and students will be hungry in 2020. Because of the lockdown, students had more time and asked questions. The crowd is there.
Related: Is This College Diploma Really Important To Success?
In niches, money is hip for most entrepreneurs. Education is a vast field made up of hundreds of subjects, online training courses, tutoring, and much more. Don't try to be everything for everyone. Google will focus on computer skills. That still leaves a lot of cake.
2. Happiness favors the brave
Courage is what it takes to be successful. Entrepreneurship is not for the weak and lukewarm people. You have to be willing to take calculated risks without getting a guaranteed result. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Mark Zuckerberg all knew the risk when they dropped out of college, and it worked for them.
Universities will not give up without a fight, but rewards await those entrepreneurs willing to strike while the iron is still hot.
3. Get on the ground floor
While there is something to be said, be patient and watch how things develop, some select people and organizations downstairs can enjoy the first mover benefit.
4. Technology made things easy
Technology is so advanced that an entrepreneur can run a multi-million dollar business from the comfort of his own home. Upwork, Fiverr, and the like made it easy to find and hire virtual assistants. It has never been easier to outsource the work to people around the world.
Related: Why the traditional 4-year degree no longer cuts it
5. Companies are hungry for talent
Liberal arts or degrees in history, English or philosophy have long allowed people to get jobs, are companies because they were the best candidates available. Google plans to create people who will instantly fit their needs and benefit from being paid by them. It's a win-win situation for both parties. Google is getting better qualified people and classes, students are spending less, spending less time, and getting better paying jobs.