Work to Learn is a consulting firm and think tank working at the intersection of the future of work and the future of learning. Our consultants help business leaders to better understand the disrupted world of work and adapt their organization to capitalize on new opportunities. We write extensively about workforce and workplace transformation, advise business and academic leaders on organizational culture and strategy, and provide keynote and custom workshops to build deeper understanding of the workforce challenges in the face of transformational change. As machine capabilities advance and replace the work of humans, humans must continually up skill to achieve new collective capabilities. Where we once traveled a linear path from classroom to work, we now travel a circuitous route in which continual learning enables workers to identify and capture opportunity in a dynamic global digital economy. In short, we now Work to Learn.
Heather McGowan & Chris Shipley, Principals, Work To Learn
Heather McGowan and Chris Shipley are sought-after thought leaders in the education and technology innovation sectors. The two have been collaborating on the nature of work, culture, and innovation since 2015, and are frequently called upon to speak to and consult with leading companies, government agencies, and academic institutions on the Future of Work and Education worldwide. Their essays on these topics have been widely shared and read by more than 1 million people. They have spoken to executive audiences around the world and their work has been used by the World Bank, the Brookings Institution, the Ohio Governor’s Office of Workforce Development, and New York Times bestselling author Thomas L. Friedman, among others.
Heather McGowan is an internationally known speaker, writer and thought leader. McGowan prepares educators and business leaders to most-effectively react to rapid and disruptive changes in education, work, and society. As an innovation strategist, Heather has worked with diverse teams in academia and large corporations to address these challenges. In higher education, she advises presidents to develop expertise and learning agility to prepare graduates for jobs that do not yet exist. She was the architect of the Kanbar College of Design, Engineering, and Commerce at Philadelphia University, the first undergraduate college explicitly focused on innovation. At Becker College she crafted the intellectual construct for the Agile Mindset learning framework. She assists corporate executives in rethinking their business models, teams, and organizational structures to become resilient in changing markets. Her corporate clients range from start-ups to publicly traded, Fortune 500 companies, including Autodesk and BD Medical. Recently, she originated the role of Minister of Culture for Hyperloop Transportation Technologies. McGowan is the co-author and co-editor of the book Disrupt Together: How Teams Consistently Innovate.
Chris Shipley spent 30 years entrenched in the technology industry as a journalist, analyst, event producer and startup mentor, roles that provided a front-row seat to the transformations - positive and otherwise - brought about by digital innovation. She has documented, influenced, and predicted the impact of technology on business and society. As a journalist, she covered the tech industry for leading publishing companies throughout the 80s and 90s. As an analyst, she identified innovative startups that create markets and drive positive change. As an event producer, she led the DEMO Conference where she identified ground-breaking products such as salesforce.com, TiVO, VMWare, among many others, and helped their founders bring them to market (were those companies an investment portfolio, they would have a market value exceeding $60 billion today.) As a mentor, she has advised hundreds of companies on positioning, business modeling, and innovation practices. Shipley is the author of two books published by ZD Press, and speaks frequently on innovation and entrepreneurship.