From education to employment

A year for VUCA

SOCIAL entrepreneur Safaraz Ali believes that those that will thrive in 2023 will be the people and businesses that embrace VUCA.

Safaraz, who is chief executive and founder of skills and employability provider the Pathway Group states: “We live in a VUCA world, volatile uncertain, complex and ambiguous but it can also mean vision, understanding, clarity and agility.”

Safaraz has looked back on a year of challenge but also a lot of achievements.

“The rebranding of our annual awards to the Multicultural Apprenticeship Awards was a success, whilst retaining the original purpose and objectives.

“In November, the awards were a stunning success with high calibre winners and candidates in all categories. The overall winner Paris Small, an IT engineer with Jaguar Land Rover, will be a great ambassador for apprenticeships.

“A new initiative was the Festival of Apprenticeships with three events in London, Manchester and Birmingham.

“Thanks to all the great companies and organisations that supported us in bringing the opportunities that apprenticeships provide to thousands of young people.

“Our main sponsors, London South Bank University, Manchester Metropolitan University and Aston University did us proud, as did careermap, our media partner.”

“We are grateful for all the support that they have given us.

Safaraz says that there is often too little or too much information, leaving young people and those that influence them such as parents and teachers feeling overwhelmed.

He says that too often young people ‘stumble into careers’ and that exhibitions like the Festival of Apprenticeship roadshows  are a good way of getting the information to make good choices.

“When it comes to careers guidance parents, teachers and even peers are generally the biggest influencers. However, there is often either too much or not enough information available, leaving the decision-making process feeling overwhelming.

“There are a range of training and career paths available to young people today, offering a better set of options than ever before.

“Apprenticeships are constantly evolving to meet the needs of employers, employees and the economy,” said Safaraz.

Moving on to other initiatives from 2022, Safaraz states: “At Pathway Group, our work in providing skills and employability was taken forward. The team has been strengthened at all levels. Now we have skills hubs across the country where we change lives through skills and learning.”

Safaraz is looking forward to 2023 but believes the training and skill sector needs certainty going in the year ahead.

“The sudden scrapping of traineeships at the end of 2022, without any consultation, does not give cause for confidence.” he added.

In 2023, Pathway Group will continue to build upon foundations set over the past 12 months. There will again be Festival of Apprenticeships roadshows in London, Manchester and Birmingham, as well as a new online festival in February.

“As we all move into this year, we must remember take on board VUCA in both forms,” Safaraz concluded.

Safaraz Ali, Founder and CEO of Pathway Group Changing lives through skills and work

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