Interested in an EMBA program? What you should know about the Fourth Industrial Revolution

May 06, 2019

And how it changes how businesses operate

Pic of an EMBA student pointing at the writing "Industry 4.0"
The Fourth Industrial Revolution will disrupt industries and economies.

The First Industrial Revolution began in the 1700s with the invention of steam power. In the 1800s, electricity and mass production brought about the Second Industrial Revolution, which was followed by computerization and the Third Industrial Revolution in the mid-20th century. All of those events transformed the economy. They created new jobs, opened up new markets, and contributed to the rise of new technologies.

Today the Fourth Industrial Revolution, or Industry 4.0, is well underway. Like the industrial revolutions of the past, Industry 4.0 will disrupt industries and economies, both for better and worse. If you’re interested in an executive MBA program, here’s what you need to know about Industry 4.0.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution will change how we work and live

So what is Industry 4.0? Partly, it is the invention of new technologies like artificial intelligence, augmented reality, the Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, 3D printing, and much more. However, Industry 4.0 is about more than just new technologies themselves. Rather, what really sets our current era apart from previous ones is how these technologies will change the way humans communicate, move, and work. The gap between the physical and the cyber worlds will become harder to distinguish as technology becomes more integrated into every aspect of our lives. For business leaders, that’s a shift that will disrupt many industries and business models.

Businesses will need to upgrade their employees’ skills regularly

Because of AI and automation, many jobs are going to disappear. At the same time, Industry 4.0 will create new jobs that don’t even exist today. This rapid pace of change means that employees will need to be retrained regularly. New skills are going to be needed and employees and companies must focus heavily on continuous retraining, such as by supporting employees going back to school, which is something that many forward-thinking companies are already doing.

An EMBA graduate working on a futuristic screen
Businesses will need to invest in employee re-training to keep up with technological advancements.

This retraining does not refer exclusively to learning how to use new technologies, but also to developing creative and analytical skills. In fact, because of increased automation, the need for “human” skills like creativity, cross-cultural communication, and critical thinking will likely be in high demand. For example, as Industry 4.0 fuels ongoing globalization, business leaders will need to be able to implement strategies to respond to an increasingly integrated world. During your global EMBA program at WU Executive Academy you can get a head start on this important issue by studying various topics related to globalization, such as managing globalization, contemporary issues in global business, and global strategies and innovation. Because these courses are taught at campuses all over the world, you will gain a better understanding of the unique dynamics of local economies and how to work and cooperate with people across cultural and national borders.

An EMBA can help business leaders better understand how to analyze data

IoT devices like smartphones, home security systems, appliances, medical devices, agricultural and manufacturing equipment, and automobiles will create vast amounts of data. Mining and interpreting this data in order to extract value from it will set successful companies apart from the rest. As a result, data analysis is becoming one of the most important skills in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

EMBA graduates discussing something
Industry 4.0 will create exponential growth in data, making data analysis a key skill for business leaders.

That’s why our program places a strong emphasis on data analysis. For example, during your EMBA you will learn about exploratory data analysis, regression analysis, statistical process control, basic inferential procedures, and decision models. These skills will help you better understand and manage numerical data and recognize how that data can be used to make key business decisions. Such skills will help you thrive in the Industry 4.0 economy.

Are you ready to upgrade your skills?

Contact WU Executive Academy to learn about our executive MBA courses.

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