The future of education is poised to look completely different than it currently does. Less than a decade from now, children who are entering kindergarten are going to explore careers that are not in existence – yet.

With all this change, how will our existing curriculums reflect this change? How will they adapt? Grow? Evolve?

Regardless of the opportunities and new job titles that emerge, there are four skills that will be required when preparing our children for this precarious career climate. These skills are know as the 4 C’s of Education and include Critical Thinking, Communication, Collaboration & Creativity.

Let’s unpack these a bit…

Critical Thinking – With an inundation of media and resources at our fingertips, it’s hard to distinguish between the sources we can trust from those that are a waste of time. It is our responsibility to teach our future generation to seek out news that is reputable and factual. If we don’t do this, then there will be a generation of misinformed cogs running around shaping our world in ways that are not truthful and potentially harmful.

Communication – Regardless of your business dealings, personal relationships, or social interactions, I think we can all agree that accurate and authentic communication is a key factor in long-term success. Promoting emotional intelligence and the ability to share openly is going to be integral to the ever-changing landscape of education, careers, relationships and general interactions.

With the exponential growth of social media in the past decade, there has been a massive shift that has seen many of our human interactions replaced by digital interactions. It’s important to recognize this, and be cognizant of socializing our children in ways that promote their social and emotional growth  – playdates, trips to the park, etc. – in order to promote the healthy development of emotional intelligence and empathy through real interaction.

Collaboration – With many companies embracing the culture of freedom and flexibility by allowing for partial or fully remote positions, we are forced to innovate in the area of workplace collaboration. Teaching kids early on, that sharing ideas, their toys, their friends and their environments, and equipping them with the tools that allow them to express their boundaries, will enable them to work more effectively with co-workers in this new economic climate.

Creativity – Any area of a company that requires strategy, which -let’s face it, is every area, is going to require new ideas to drive those strategies. Every organization is constantly on the hunt for new ideas and the demand is only growing. More so than ever, lateral thinking on your team is a crucial component to your company’s success.

Today, there is always going to be a newer, cooler, cheaper, more efficient product or process right around the corner, and if you aren’t constantly creating, you are going to be disrupted. If you aren’t innovating, you are falling behind.  So start early and prepare the next generation for the world ahead. Don’t let them be the jobless generation.