CATS - Curious, Aspiring 30 Somethings. This is a term that I learned from the business model of MasterClass that is booming recently. I had been watching this startup since it first started with a few celebrities with the one I remembered most was the culinary class by Gordon Ramsey. I am a fan of his and the advertisement successfully targeted me to see what's behind the classes. This is relevant to me as I am personally involved and invested in the education industry.
The Learning Points
Who are CATS?
As mentioned, being in our thirties and being curious and aspiring, where will we go to? What will we be doing? To understand the demography, we need to see what are the thirties are doing. They are from the 80s, on their journey to hit the pinnacle of life, just build a young family, and most importantly, they have more reasons to be more competitive as they have more commitment along the way.
Talking about curiosity, all of us are a naturally curious person where we will explore things that we never have seen before. Yet, when we are getting older, we tend to stop being curious and stay in our comfort zone. This is partly our very own nature of being comfortable within a familiar environment. However, the world is ever-changing and change is the only constant. Thus, being curious is part of staying relevant and survive in the stream of changes.
Next up is about aspiration. We all have our very own bucket list with different dreams and goals to hit. Nevertheless, how many of us would really lay out a solid action plan that would lead us towards these dreams or goals? Thus, aspiration comes with a commitment which is a step by step small, consecutive actions that would eventually get us to fulfil our goals.
So in our thirties, it is where our bucket list will have more items in it as we continuously explore the world. Thus, this is a group of people who are craving for new knowledge and skills from time to time.
The change of learning habits
From the case study of MasterClass, it is obvious that they do not aim for the KPI of course completion as they had recently launched access to all package. This would allow the users to access all available courses in the MasterClass ecosystem and learn anything at our own pace and preference.
Imagine after going through the K12 education system and university, we no longer are restrained by the learning system that requires us to follow rigidly. We are finally free. The next question would be, how are we going to create a new system for ourselves to continuous learning? We cannot just stop learning after graduating from university as this would make ourselves obsolete in no time. Hence, even learning habits have to be changed from full time, full-fledged learning mode to a part-time learning mode. In other words, there are so many ways to learn and it is up to us to choose.
For the post-university learning, I think the two keys would be curious and system. Curious is the driving force for us to continuously explore the world. Yet, we need a system to record and manage our inflow knowledge. That is why I am doing this daily notes to record my learning and thoughts.
Education is about transferring of knowledge
I am constantly thinking, what is actually education? Can education only happen in school? Should the teacher the only person who can teach? Is the learning method that we experienced in school the best method to learn?
All of these questions do not give us a clear answer on what education really is. From the MasterClass sharing, education is about transferring knowledge from one point to another. Thus, no matter where we are or who we are dealing with, as long as there is something new that we learn from another person, that would mean education has occurred right at that moment. This is what makes me excited about as education transcends classrooms as the world itself is a classroom.
What is being expected from continuously learning?
In most of the time, we did something and will expect an outcome or a result. This is what we had been taught. Yet, life long learning is something that does not really applicable to this concept. In many times, we may learn something that is not relevant to our current job or situation. Like, we learn about arts and composition in our thirties yet we are working as a programmer which has nothing to do with arts. Yet, in the maybe late 40s, we may use the knowledge of arts to go into art investment or went on to develop our own art studio that integrates with the smart application. Without different pieces of knowledge, creativity and innovation can never happen. Creativity is all about mixing different elements together and become a better solution.
So, we need to get rid of our result based learning mindset and let it become a system where we constantly absorb and put our thoughts into our "second brain". With that, we will definitely achieve something unexpected in our later life. That is what serendipity is all about and that is why life is exciting. You never know what chocolate you will get in the chocolate box.
Building a global community
Back to education, I had learned a very important lesson from MasterClass is that they are not focusing on helping people to learn different skills from different masters. The thing that is trying to do is to build a global community that embraces life long learning and keen to exchange different knowledge. This would be a very big and versatile community which has a lot of potentials and opportunities to offer. It is a global community full of creators and not consumers.
To be honest, the more I read about education, the more I see how far it can go in changing a person to a community and a whole generation! It is an exciting field to be in and a challenging one as well. Since we are in the 21st century, there is much technology that could help with the process of education and also the accessibility of it. Thus, it is one of the best time to start something in this field which is what I am currently doing - creating a creative learning community that embraces the artistic side of life.
Image Source: Link