Every year, thousands of graduates are churned out by universities, polytechnics, colleges of education, mono-technics and allied institutions. From the east to the north and west to the south of the continent, stakeholders have at least debated and still debating employability of the graduates in the last three decades. From physical sphere to the online platforms, various questions have been asked and still posed to the graduates, their producers and government at all levels.
A number of answers have equally been given to the questions on different fora. Despite the answers, the question remains, are African graduates employable? Can they translate the gained theoretical propositions into a practical framework for solving issues and needs in industries and sectors?
Largely, various industry reports and academic publications have revealed problem solving, resilience and communication as the main skill gaps being experienced by employers. This indicates that majority of graduates cannot solve tasks effectively using these skills. For the students who are still in various higher institutions and some graduates who attended some of our personalised training on ‘skilling, reskilling and upskilling’ programme, the question we usually received is how can I improve my lack of skill gaps?
The answer has always been that both the students and creators of knowledge and skills need to work together. As long as institutions and tutors follow the theoretical basis of each course of study and having professionals from the field once a while for the purpose of reinforcing the basis practically, there should not be skills gap among the graduate. Skills gap can only exist when the graduates cannot convince employers how their theoretical understanding of various concepts and constructs can solve existing and future problems in workplaces. This has been dubbed by several professionals and scholars as awareness gap.
In reality, most African graduates have awareness gap not skills gap. However, one cannot completely have blind views on the existence of skills gap when new developments are changing the face of competition and how businesses navigate uncertain terrains across Africa. In our understanding of the Tekedia Mini-MBA’s working in the last five sessions, it has emerged that the Tekedia Institute, an African owned business school, which is situated in Boston, the United States of America, is solving the two gaps -awareness and skills gaps holistically using value co-creation and delivery strategies.
Apart from the fact that the Institute has an array of seasoned professionals and captains of industries within and outside the continent as tutors, its weekly live session via zoom meeting is delivering principles and practices of overcoming awareness gap. Bringing in some of the tutors as speakers during the live session to talk about business and political dynamics disentangles problems associated with a better understanding of uncertainties in African economies in relation to other economies outside the continent.
Tekedia Practice and Business Growth Playbook have a high tendency of providing augmented realities that would enable employees and owners of established and start-up businesses navigate the current VUCA world. The Institute, according to our analyst, within a few years of existence has proved that overcoming the skills gap on the continent needs more than providing enabling platforms and resources. It requires the fusion of perception mechanics and physics of business creation and management.