Design thinking and soft skills attract in the GCC market

TEXT | Annika Hissa, Sirpa Rutanen & Kamal Jaber
- Kuvateksti: Mr Kamal Jaber, CEO of Edufinlandia, Ms Annika Hissa, Director of Design Center MUOVA and Ms Sirpa Rutanen, Head of Communications & Marketing at VAMK Vaasa University of Applied Sciences visiting Sinatra Holding in Dubai.

Upskilling ad reskilling are trending in the GCC market, and there is a great demand for Finnish educational solutions regarding short module trainings and microcourses. The interest to rethink professional development and skills enhancement has grown due to the hybrid model of working.

The UAE Centennial Plan 2071 aims at investing in the future generations, by preparing them with the skills and knowledge needed to face rapid changes and to make the UAE the best country in the world by the next centennial in 2071. (UAE Centennial 2071)

During our benchmarking trip to the UAE, we met together with our business partner Edufinlandia potential partners interested in short module trainings. Kamal Jaber’s job during the first stage of the pilot project is to contact the UAE’s, Bahrain’s and Saudi Arabia’s institutions, learn about their needs and expectations and attempt to negotiate trial agreements. Here, Mr. Jaber’s extensive network of interpersonal relations in business will be extremely significant and valuable. The pilot project’s target is to provide a unified approach, guiding principles, and quality control for education export.

Short module trainings build in-demand career skills and knowledge

The role of upskilling becomes incredibly important within the workforce so that once new jobs and roles in the career market become available, there are trained people ready to meet the challenge. According to PwC’s Middle East Future of Work and Skills Survey – December 2021, 42% of the Middle Eastern companies cited ‘encouraging re-skilling and continuous learning to help workers remain employable’ as very important. (PwC Middle East Future of Work and Skills Survey Dec 2021)

Vaasa UAS’s Design Centre MUOVA is an expert in market-oriented design. It studies, educates, develops and offers business services related to design. MUOVA’s services are tailored to meet a variety of business development needs with flexible, efficient short modules to expand individual’s skills and knowledge. 

MUOVA is able to deliver short, compact online learning solutions to develop specific competencies fast. The contents represent sub-topics in easily digestible parts. The aim is to build and diversify valuable skills and mindsets for the future career. These skills include resilience, motivation, creativity and problem-solving. One part of the training would consist of the role of Design Thinking in coping with and solving complex and blurry problems of the future society.

Agile training and active listening

The contents can be customized to customer’s needs and are aimed at busy professionals. The training can be flexibly online and can be recorded allowing to proceed in a convenient self-paced format.  Short face-to-face trainings on site can also be organized, both in the target market as well as in Finland.

The general idea is to create agile and creative training solutions based on actively listening the customer’s needs. Furthermore, beside the current megatrends and market data, the vital part is to tune in to the more subtle, ‘quiet’ signals which may have impact for longer term. Combining all this knowledge while building our solutions, we believe we will deliver successful skills enhancement options for our current and future partners.

  • UAE Cetennial Plan 2071, UAE Centennial 2071 - The Official Portal of the UAE Government.

  • Building tomorrow’s workforce: Six no-regrets plays to make today, Middle East Future of Work and Skills Survey - December 2021, Building tomorrow’s workforce: Six no-regrets plays to make today - PwC Middle East

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