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      October 19, 2021

      Don’t call it a dream, call it a plan! Understanding learning as a key and door opener.

      We should have the courage to actively participate in change, to awaken curiosity for the future and to show the necessary endurance to reach set goals. To shape change also means to integrate learning into everyday life and not to see it as a duty - that is the key and door opener at the same time.

      Life-long learning, training, fit for the future - words you read every day when you look at the newspaper, social media or internet. For some these topics are already too present so that they feel a certain uncertainty towards the future which builds up pressure. But this is exactly what learning shouldn’t symbolize!  Learning means curiosity, willingness to change, endurance and naturally enjoyment. Everybody should see learning not as a challenge, but as an essential part of their everyday life - that is the key!

      Learning for me is future and that is what I want to pass on to our colleagues and participants of the qualification program. Learning doesn’t mean getting the next title or certificate - no, it is an essential part of your personal development. You should integrate learning into your everyday life and not see it as a duty for further development.

      My name is Isabelle, I am a manager for transformation and qualification in the Continental Institute for Technology and Transformation (CITT) in Germany. During my school and semester vacations I was a ski instructor, I am active in local politics and try my best at triathlon. My job and my hobbies already show my interest and joy in learning and qualifications. These topics could not be more diverse, but they have one thing in common - understanding learning as the key and door opener.

      Continental has always valued qualifying its employees. At this time of change, especially characterized by transformation, qualification of each individual plays an even more important role. At CITT we concentrate especially on transformation qualifications. Here we look at all employee groups, starting with step by step qualification up to vocational qualification and on to qualifying programs which prepare them for important future fields and needed competencies.

      At CITT I try to identify new topics and offers for our colleagues. Topics that help to advance them in their professional life, that make them fit for the future, but which especially increase their competencies, interests and inclinations.

      In exchange with the areas of expertise, experts on different topics and especially the employees we always see the same picture. Learning isn’t only increasing knowledge and competence, it doesn’t depend on the format, but always on the learner. Not only in my company but in my personal experience the key to success can be divided into three areas:

      1. Curiosity

      Discovering and getting to know new people, countries and cultures, dealing with and discussing a wide variety of social, economic and political topics shows interest and curiosity. What does that have to do with learning? Simply, curiosity or desire for new things opens up the view you sometimes need to take the next step.

      2. Willingness to change

      Change at times means making mistakes, but by letting them happen it is possible to change something. Every change harbors uncertainty and one needs the courage to face change, to accept it in order to make a difference. In times of change I see here a great chance if you believe in yourself, in your strengths and your abilities to try something completely new. Sometimes it doesn’t work right away, but one should start with little things to change big things.

      3. Endurance

      Learning and discipline belong together - this we have all been told since childhood. Discipline also means to motivate yourself, to get up again if you have failed and to fight for your dreams. I, personally, tie discipline to sports. Especially in sport you need the will to fight and to continue even if it hurts. Learning and especially integrating learning in everyday situations needs a lot of discipline. You have to allow time for it and motivate yourself in addition to your professional tasks, to plan your own further education as an important element of your life. Therefore sport is very important for me, especially endurance sport which requires a lot of will to continue fighting, even when you think you can’t go any further.

      For me these three topics are closely linked to the topics learning and qualification and they accompany me in my personal and professional life.

      We should have the courage to actively co-ordinate change, to awaken the curiosity for the future and show the needed discipline to reach set goals.

      This article was written by our employee.

      Isabelle Hemsley

      Referentin Transformation und Qualifizierung

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