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ISO: Foxy Hedgehogs – Resilient Skills to Navigate the COVID-19 Job Market

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"A fox knows many things.
A hedgehog knows one big thing."


By Jen Reiseman-Briscoe

Remember when you couldn’t wait for 2019 to just be over, already?

“In the blink of an eye,” say our friends at Emsi, so descriptively, “the ‘Class of 2020’ became the ‘Class of COVID-19,’ staring down one of the worst labor markets we’ve ever seen.”

Emsi is an entity that culls and analyzes data covering more than 99% of the workforce, and, for years, has been invaluable in helping us at MBS shape curricula and programs in pace with workforce trends and labor demands in STEM-based, science-intensive industries.

As COVID-19 impacted the national economy and sent global markets off the rails, Emsi was one of the first firms to adjust its analytics to reliably track data in a job market that suddenly resembled a bucking bronco in nature.

To navigate what Emsi has since deemed a “wicked” employment landscape, you need resilient skills, which are defined as “those skills where the demand has either increased or stayed steady thorough all of the craziness.” Intentional learning goes a long way, too—that’s another story.

Emsi recently compiled and released a fascinating, 23-page report detailing exactly what those resilient skills look like. You are welcome to download the full report (see button), read the abstract, watch the below video as a quick summary or as a supplement (recommended), or refer to the at-a-glance chart and bullets at the end of this blog. The big takeaway? Be a “foxy hedgehog.” Want to know more? Read on and/or click below…

button that takes you to the emsi website where you can download the full report

Chart showing the key takeaways in the report, which are: Resilient skills include a mix of human skills and technical skills. Human skills, such as communication, management/leadership, and critical thinking are specifically required in 84%of all ojb postings. Technical skills fall into two basic ategories, technology (tech) skills such as cofing and software development, and core business skills, sales marketing, finance, and operations.

Jen Reiseman-Briscoe
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