Few people like classroom training

How modernity spilled into corporate cultures

German version here | Deutsche Version hier

Corporate cultures are currently changing due to various influences that are mutually reinforcing. In addition to basic digitisation, socio-cultural network practices, which have been practiced in other contexts, have a massive impact on companies’ in-house cultures.

No matter what the prophets of doom might be saying, there are now huge numbers of network savvy people living out network culture in their daily lives. And they bring this world of experience and expectation into their professional contexts too. Many of them wish for participation on an equal level not for ideological reasons but on the basis of lived experience in the social network systems. Nurtured by different forms of socialisation, we are now seeing the rise of value systems that partly contradict each other.

Now, through a number of educational policy decisions (the Bologna reform, the OECD studies, the increasingly precarious situation of workers in the education sector, etc.) has opened up a gap between what supposed experts of advanced age consider as education and the experiences of people actively engaged in social networks.

In consequence, traditional formal education and further education is increasingly failing to reach people where they actually are. What we see instead are clumsy top-down attempts to push them in a direction that’s politically expedient. Unfortunately, this has created the problems we are currently facing.

People can neither self-organize themselves to create their lifelong learning style for personal skills development nor do they trust the formal offers, because these are often pushed through by over-harassed and over-challenged teaching staff who themselves hardly ever use the Net for continuous further development.

How can we escape from this dilemma? Perhaps by adopting a completely new way of thinking?! Who is the mentor here? Who is the student?

At the moment we’re seeing an inflationary use of technical terms from pedagogics in an effort to contain this problem: social learning, blended learning, social blended learning and so on. These are all clumsy attempts to express a phenomenon for which the signs of the times tell us signals nothing less than the demise of pedagogics!

When open systems are moving to an open future with open outcomes, planned learning objectives can no longer be addressed in a methodical way — except perhaps the basic competencies (reading, writing, arithmetic).

What we need to do then is to think in terms of completely new scenarios, create new frameworks for education policy-making, and encourage a wide diversity of experiments in order to nurture a new culture of education for the whole of society that takes only one guiding principle:

A permanent state of willingness to engage in on-going further development, not to stand still, and above all, not to sell any more certainty.

Having said this, let me close this paper with a QUESTION MARK: What do you think?


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