Gildow to discuss the speed of change at chamber meeting

Keeping up with changing world takes time and effort

In his many walks of life, Ray Gildow keeps an eye on the future. People in Staples know Gildow as a television talk show host, educator, coach, musician, fishing guide and outdoors columnist.

Gildow said he’s not a true futurist, but follows the subject and it will be the topic of his speech at the Staples-Motley Area Chamber of Commerce annual dinner Jan. 19 at Ted & Gen’s in Aldrich.

“The talk will be a snapshot of what I’ve learned,” said Gildow. “The future is exciting but challenging.”

Gildow said he’s always been interested in futuristic predictions and has worked with former Bemidji State University President M. James Bensen, who Gildow says is a true futurist, who belongs to futurist groups.

Gildow started solidifying his message while working with the STRIVE mentoring program, where local citizens help high school seniors through their final year of high school and help them develop a plan for their future.

While helping students, Gildow said he keeps coming across interesting predictions. “This year’s senior class will have 14 job changes in their careers,” said Gildow. “Many of them will be jobs we don’t even know exist now.”

To prepare for that unknown job market, Gildow said students need to be highly educated and learn how to be flexible. He said the current job market doesn’t have enough people trained to fit the coming needs.

It’s not just young people needing to keep up, as the increased speed of change is completely tearing apart institutions, businesses and government. “It’s impacting all of us,” said Gildow.

Gildow gave an example of driverless cars, which are already being tested on U.S. roads. “No one has developed any rules for them,” said Gildow. “When it comes, we won’t know what to do with it.”

To demonstrate how rapidly change is affecting us now, Gildow compared the latest smart phones with the first long distance communication gadget, the telegraph. “The rate of change for the telegraph was fairly flat, it was basically the same for many years,” said Gildow. “An iPhone has something new every month. We have to cope with that rate of change.”

Gildow said it takes time and effort to keep up with the changing world. A good start could be the chamber dinner on Jan. 19.

Staples World

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