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Entrepreneurship Will Increase In Canada, Futurist Predicts

“Whether you sign your own paycheque or someone else does, you are going to need to be entrepreneurial.”

– RICHARD WORZEL

If futurist Richard Worzel is right, within the next generation up to one-third of Canadian workers will have to look in the mirror if they want to talk to the boss.

Worzel, a Toronto-based financial analyst and member of the World Future Society, told the recent Capturing Opportunities business and community conference here last week that self-employment will be how a growing number of workers make ends meet.

He bases his prediction on the changing economy, increasing foreign competition, a shifting Canadian demographic, the convergence of technology and automation eating its way up the labour chain.

“The era of the parental corporation looking after us as employees is gone,” said Worzel, who is much sought after across the country for his analysis and insights into the future challenges facing communities and their organizations.

“Whether you sign your own paycheque or someone else does, you are going to need to be entrepreneurial.”

Rapid change in society is also going to require people who are trained to learn as they go.

That ability, plus the capacity to be an independent, creative thinker possessing people skills, with an ability to provide leadership and problem solving – are the critical skills our education system needs to impart, says Worzel.

The biggest challenge facing our society right now is coming up with new and better ways to educate children, he said.

“To serve the individual best, our education system will need to identify the highest passions of each individual, their talents and abilities unique to them and to find a way of developing those unique talents in everyone, specifically. But we have been wedded to the 19th century mass production model of education for far too long.”

Worzel also spoke at length about future unpredictability in world economies, and the potential for other nasty scenarios that will catch societies flat-footed if they’re unprepared.

“The future is going to be more challenging, with more opportunity and less security,” he said. “The highs are going to be higher and lows are going to be lower. If we’re not prepared, we’re going to suffer immensely. Those who are prepared will prosper mightily.”

Worzel is author of Who Owns Tomorrow: 7 Secrets for the Future of Business. and has a website (www.futuresearch.com)where conference handouts are available for downloading.

His talk opened two days of sessions at the 2010 business conference featuring guest speakers from across Canada on topics themed around building social, business and human infrastructure. [email protected]

About the author

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Lorraine Stevenson

Lorraine Stevenson is a reporter and photographer for the Manitoba Co-operator with 25 years experience writing news and features. She was previously a reporter with the Farmers Independent Weekly and has also written for community newspapers in Winnipeg and Manitoba's Interlake.

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