There’s no question populations (and hence workforces) are aging. No question this poses problems/challenges/adjustments/opportunities for business (many even arguing that this is a bigger threat than the financial crisis). And not just in the UK.
No question too that the world is overpopulated (many even arguing that this is a bigger threat than global warming).
But is anyone asking the question of what an over many over aged not just over there workforce means for our human capital strategies? Or are we (and our strategies) still ‘looking to the children of the future?’
The problem/challenge/adjustment/opportunity here is not: are there enough people (our ultimate knowledge economy resource). Human capital is more than just about the body count – it’s educated and productive bodies (young?) that give companies – countries the edge. So how do we recognise this fact (if it is one?) and produce a human capital strategy that addresses it? Is there a human capital strategy out there aligned with the reality of an aging population? Does everything (training and development etc which are getting more and more constant) change at a certain age?
Cane che abbaia non morde! The dog that barks, doesn't bite. It’s an old Italian proverb, an expression for saying that the person who talks and yells is usually the person who will not do something bad to you. At what point does our commitment to maximising potential become an exercise in teaching people to make a lot of good noise, but yield no real (worse, un-) productive impact? Is there a point where it’s not worth the effort? Or does the effort – and the impact - need to adapt? And as such, be approached, measured and reported in a different way?
Can you teach an old dog new tricks? Do you just need new human capital tricks? Anyone out there got any up their sleeves? Or is this a new problem/challenge/adjustment - opportunity?