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Cut Your Learning Curve

Feb 8, 2021

In the past year, the spread of Covid-19 has dramatically upended both work and college life.  Much of the “knowledge economy” workforce has migrated to 100% remote. We had almost 2 feet of snow fall on New York City in the past week. Instead of delayed commutes and trundling through the slush, our work days were basically unchanged. So too have universities shifted to a mix of remote and in-person classes, with each school and school system designing its own policies for testing and reducing transmission. 

As the vaccine rollout continues and tentative plans are being made for the return to the office, what does this mean for hiring, particularly for recent graduates in the past five years? In this week’s podcast, Nate and I discuss our own experiences hiring and working with recent hires for our specialty areas - engineering, design and project management. 

The credentials of graduating from an elite university still have considerable value, particularly in terms of prestige and the network of contacts.  For many recruiters, a four year degree is the first box to check. Yet at the same time, the needed skills continue to evolve rapidly. A big focus for employers is show us what you have done - your portfolio, your code sample, your work experience. New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman has written about how we will all need to become lifelong learners to adapt to a radically changing world of work. I believe Covid has only accelerated the changes that we will see in the future.