Will your current job exist in 5 years time? Do you have the right skills and competencies to have a successful career in the future? Is it possible to future proof your career now? In 2017 the World Economic Forum predicts that ‘by 2020 more than a third of the desired core skill sets of most occupations will be comprised of skills that are not yet considered crucial to jobs today’.
Technological innovation, digital transformation, the industrial internet, advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning and a plethora of other innovations are fundamentally changing the nature of work.
How can you future proof your career?
Well, it certainly means being proactive and increasing your capability in the following areas:
Employers themselves may not know what they need straight away, change can happen rapidly so being flexible about what you do, what you learn and how you do things will be key. Being able to adapt to new situations and cope with change is essential. Also being willing to move sideways to develop new skills as well as up in your career.
- Need to up your flexibility quotient? – start playing around with your routines, changing your look, taking up a new hobby or exercise. Keep mixing it up so you are comfortable with change and having to adapt to it.
Both digital and in person connections will be a foundation to future proof your career. Regularly building and engaging with people within and outside you industry could pay off in terms of identifying possible opportunities for a move, mentoring, developing and building your own team or just generally finding support and inspiration.
- What can you do? – set yourself a goal of increasing your network by 10 people every month!
Stay Tech Savvy:
This is not just being computer literate but being aware of the possible impact of AI, machine learning and the Internet of Things on your industry and the roles within it. Whatever, your role whether marketing, finance or HR there will be technological changes developing and it’s important to embrace and welcome them.
- Want to get ahead of the game? – enroll on a coding course!
Develop a 5 year learning plan for yourself. Stay curious and open to experimentation in what you do. Companies may not know what they need employees to know or learn yet, but knowing they have employees on board who demonstrate the capability and willingness to learn quickly is a big plus.
- Haven’t learnt anything for a while? – choose something fun, like smartphone photography, and flex those learning muscles!
People skills will become more and more valuable, as there will be limits to what machines and AI can deliver. Empathy, emotional intelligence, creativity and good management will be prized qualities.
- Want to increase your people skills? – offer to mentor a junior colleague or do some volunteering!
Just as organisations need to be building talent pipelines for the future, you need to be increasing your employability. Do this by being forward looking and taking a proactive approach to the skills needed, even if you don’t know what they are yet. After all 2020 isn’t that far away is it?
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