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News Article

Unlocking potential through education and skills training

Greg Hayes, Chairman & CEO, speaks at the Annual Concordia Summit

September 26, 2017

Greg Hayes spoke with the former President of Bolivia Jorge Quiroga about the impact of globalization and automation on the workforce and what can be done to address some of the challenges they create. Photo by Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Concordia Summit
Greg Hayes spoke with the former President of Bolivia Jorge Quiroga about the impact of globalization and automation on the workforce and what can be done to address some of the challenges they create. Photo by Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Concordia Summit

The world is changing rapidly – becoming more global and technologically advanced every day. To stay competitive, we must evolve our business and evolve as individuals. We must also proactively embrace lifelong learning, something United Technologies has been passionate about for many years.

During a recent discussion at the Concordia Annual Summit, Greg Hayes, Chairman & CEO, talked with the former President of Bolivia Jorge Quiroga about the impact of globalization and automation on the workforce and what can be done to address some of the challenges they create. 

Throughout the conversation, Hayes reiterated the importance of education and skills training, adding, “We need to find a way to transform the workforce of today to the workforce of tomorrow.”

Photo by Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Concordia Summit
Photo by Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Concordia Summit

Recognizing one of the biggest hiring challenges businesses face today is a skills gap, the session focused on ways to help ensure workers have the opportunity to develop the skills they need to be successful while also helping businesses meet the growing demand for skilled workers. 

Hayes noted that public-private partnerships play a key role in preparing workers for the future, and highlighted the value of community colleges: “We need to start celebrating the fact that not everybody needs a four-year college degree,” he said. “I’m going to be hiring 25,000 people in the U.S. in the next three years. I can’t find those people today because they don’t have the skills I need to assemble jet engines, to install elevators, to make air conditioners. So we’re taking it upon ourselves to train them...the fact is we need people who know how to use their hands to do mechanical things. We’ll need carpenters, we need healthcare workers, we need all those things.”

Ultimately, learning is a continuous process because the way we do things today will change over time. “You have to give [people] the opportunity to learn skills and to improve those skills over time, every single year – because things will change rapidly,” Hayes said. 

About the Concordia Annual Summit
Each year the Concordia Annual Summit explores the most challenging issues facing our world – and aims to solve these problems through public-private partnerships. The event brings together 2,000+ preeminent global thought leaders, influencers and decision makers from across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors – including 30+ current and former heads of state, 450 international and Fortune 500 C-suite executives, prominent nonprofit leaders and senior Congressional and Administration officials.