The Korea Daily - Expert Column Article
Written by Stella H. Kim
Published January 19, 2023
Should we pursue a career we are passionate about, or one we can best excel at? Should we hire a candidate who demonstrates high work ethics, or one who has the best expertise? These questions have become one of the deepest concerns and hottest issues for both job seekers and companies in the current job market.
These are indeed difficult questions, but the answer is quite simple. We must carefully look for a career where we are self-motivated to consistently learn, and must hire talent capable of proactively upskilling to be market-competitive. The key is learning agility – one’s attitude and ability to adapt well to new situations and steadily learn in a constantly changing environment.
Let’s say we have two candidates that applied for a job. One has a proven history of doing the job well and continuously learns new skills to become a greater subject expert. Another has incredibly high work ethics and consistently makes an effort to strengthen all weaknesses. Which candidate is stronger? Neither. We must hire both, since they both have high learning agility.
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated change across the world. Companies that accepted change and nimbly responded went beyond just survival mode to experience exponential growth. Over the past three years, companies worldwide have struggled to attract and retain top talent. However, we must now be even more forward-looking and futureproof all talent investment strategies. We need to carefully screen for both existing skills and learning agility, then hire swiftly and develop steadily. Recruitment cannot be viewed simply as a means of hiring talent but rather as a management strategy to invest in critical skills. Companies need to address closing the current and future skills gap through proactive diagnosis of organizational capabilities and continuous investments in critical skills.
In 2015, I served as a Global Workforce S