In a rapidly changing world of work, it is key for learners to develop a lifelong learning mindset, so they can easily transition to new roles and adapt themselves to new technologies1. This blog aims to promote the benefits of developing a lifelong mindset for the future and offers educators suggestions for discussing it with their learners and links to further activities in the range of LifeSkills created with Barclays modules.
Having a growth mindset is about believing in self-improvement. To be a lifelong learner we need to have a desire to want to develop our knowledge and skills beyond formal education, to keep continuing to grow at any stage in life. This may prove to be a challenge for some learners who have, or are experiencing, barriers to learning and development, and educators may need to use a variety of activities and techniques to encourage risk-taking and boost self-confidence.
A lifelong learner takes a proactive stance – areas for development can be explored, knowledge gained, and goals can be set; it’s about taking control of situations rather than waiting for something to happen.
These are some of the traits that lifelong learners have:
Being open to growth can improve self-confidence and provide motivation for making positive changes. For some, this might mean looking for work in a different sector or even setting up their own business.
Furthermore, recent research shows that being able to demonstrate a self-management skills when applying for jobs is something that employers value as much as soft skills; active learning is the second most desirable skill that employers look for in a candidate.
Educators can use the activities in the module How you can see the benefits of lifelong learning to help learners explore this topic further and understand the advantages of having a positive lifelong learning attitude.
You could also promote lifelong learning by encouraging your learners to:
Goals for lifelong learning don’t have to be big, just achievable and linked to growth. Help your learners to identify manageable tasks such as asking their manager for a discussion around any opportunities that might be available to help them develop, completing a short online course, or attending a free digital skills session offered by the local library.
Some learners may feel the challenges of moving from a fixed mindset to one where they believe they can grow, but the benefits of lifelong learning in today’s workplace are clear when we consider how jobs are evolving.
Being agile in work is no longer just about taking our existing skills with us from one job to another. It’s about being able to keep upskilling and learning in a world that continues to evolve.
1 Top 10 Skills of 2025. 2020. The Future of Jobs Report. World Economic Forum
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