In 2015, we set out on our journey to create a completely new way of learning for the 21st century. We wanted to create a school that we would have loved to go to ourselves. A school for digital change makers from all industries, all ages and different backgrounds. That’s why we decided to found Germany’s first academy for Digital Transformation.
Soon we became pioneers in designing immersive and holistic learning experiences. Our aim was to create an inspiring atmosphere where trying out new things was really fun. SHIFTSCHOOL is in many ways very different from anything there was – intensive, creative, and unconventional.
The first initiative was a 18-month Digital Transformation Management track. This unique executive program focused on MINDSET, SKILLS, NETWORK and BALANCE to educate digital leaders to drive the digital transformation in their organizations. The curriculum included all facets of digitalization from Lean StartUp, Rapid Prototyping, and New Work up to Digital Business Strategies and Organizational Development.
We founded the first Academy for Digital Transformation
Class size was limited to a selected 25 participants per year. The program consisted of in-class workshops in eight modules and practical challenges instead of tests and grades. We curated a curriculum which was based on a mastery-based education approach where peers also could learn from each other in true self-organization. Have a look at the curriculum.
In keeping with our Mastery Based Learning philosophy, we have also reinvented the report card. We replaced school grades with a gamified badge system. The GRADPAD documents all challenges completed in the course of study. It also recognizes extraordinary achievements through special badges. A legend provides information about the achievements and additional awards.
Digitization changes the rules of the game. One industry after another. In the digital age value creation is not about creating the best products in the most efficient way. It is about finding business models that make use of our data-driven network economy.
For those about to digitally transform themselves
Premium manufacturers throughout all industries run the risk of being moved down the global food chain. Digital newcomers threaten to take the largest share of future profits.
Technological evolution enables us to do more with less – in a speed never experienced before. This exponential progress hits established business models at its core and will fundamentally change the way we will do business tomorrow.
Digital Transformation is just the beginning
We can either face this fact and act. Or we can wait and see how others will gradually benefit from our reluctance to take risks. That is why we shouldn‘t focus so much on incremental improvements of our products, services and processes. But rather on how we can rethink our business and take advantage of the myriad opportunities the new technologies will offer.
We enable companies to regain their innovative strength and successfully transform their business in the digital age. By working with the resource that has by far the biggest leverage: People.
Implementing digital transformation
But people cannot be ordered to be innovative. Change is a process and always takes time. Our job is to guide this process and enable people to create products and services under conditions of extreme uncertainty.
We teach the skills, provide the insights, and coach the creative mindset that drives change from within the company.
Every company was once built on an extraordinary idea. But by and by, many established players rested on their laurels, lost their entrepreneurial spirit, and simply forgot how to innovate. Now, as the cards are reshuffled in the game of digitalization, they run out of ideas.
However, neither classical consulting – designed to make existing processes more efficient – nor hastily summoned external creatives can replace the internal need for innovation in the long run.
Companies have to prepare themselves for the perpetual change ahead and to (re)learn how to be innovative. This requires a strong vision of the future and an appetite for risk taking. And first of all a new way of thinking.
Back then, people called us crazy for founding our own school as a couple with three young kids at home. A school, people said, must have a reputation or tradition. But we didn’t listen and did it anyway. Because we believed in our idea and were unbelievably passionate about creating Germany’s first Academy for Digital Transformation.
Today, SHIFTSCHOOL is a completely redesigned academy that combines the latest technologies and didactic concepts with state-of-the-art content. In the beginning, we didn’t have any tradition (yet), but we managed to attract a lot of talent, which is impressively confirmed by our extensive network of our trainers, coaches, mentors and company partners.
Eight years later, SHIFTSCHOOL has been awarded and featured many times as a pioneer for immersive learning experiences in a rapidly changing digital world.
Our proven innovative curriculum design and the human-centered instructional experience from more than 1000 workshops and 5 digital transformation classes help us to create best-in-class live cohort learning experiences for our members. Meanwhile almost 150 Digital Transformation Managers have graduated from our academy and more than 2000 participants from 60 companies have participated in our corporate learning journeys and leadership programs.
We are very proud to have built a vibrant community of trainers, coaches, and change makers from across Europe. This has shown us that it is always worth believing in your vision. We have had the great honor to learn a lot over the past years from all the people we have worked with. All in all, we are definitely the biggest learners in our own school.
The year 2020 with all its tremendous changes and challenges was an occasion for us to reflect on everything we have learnt so far. We have now condensed all the learnings from the past years into the SHIFTSHAPE® Framework. This new methodology can be learned and applied in the hybrid self-leadership program called SHIFT® and a 7-week transformative leadership program called SHAPE®
Moreover, we are very excited to continue our journey of learning by pioneering again as we will launch the first lifelong learning CLUB for 21st century leadership skills. It will join like-minded people from all over Europe who have understood that it is key to constantly learn and develop with the help of a strong community.
LEARNING AS A LIFESTYLE
This club will be different from anything there is so far: Imagine a place where you receive curated monthly input and inspiration on diverse topics. A place where you can participate in virtual live edutainment sessions. No boring expert talks but completely redesigned fun and inspiring teaching formats.
Imagine being part of a special book club where you have talks with the authors. In the end, learning only works in a community of likeminded people. That is why we work with mastermind groups that hold you accountable and discussions group offering lots of different views on topics and ideas.
Just imagine a club where you have access to mentors. Where peer-to-peer coaching is the norm. And where you will meet with the community on curated reflection retreats in wonderful nature spots all over Europe. It will be a club that connects lifelong learners. Both in the virtual and the real world. Gathering people who want to learn and grow together.
With STUDIO 21 we have fulfilled a long-cherished dream. Now SHIFTSCHOOL has a new home. Over months, we have created a place with great attention to detail. Here, you can directly feel and experience holistic transformation in a more than 100 year old workshop. All hidden in a typical Fürth backyard.
An authentic ambience that is rarely found in this form. There we have created our own cosmos. Due to its originality, STUDIO 21 is both a warm home and a place of creativity for us and our guests. STUDIO 21 is a retreat, living room, future workshop, production studio and source of inspiration all in one.