"Anyone in the future of work needs to actively learn and grow."|
Bernard Marr, Strategic Business And Technology Advisor
Many people see a future economic phase with artificial intelligence, robotics, and drones being integral parts of American life. Terms like the “Experience Age” are becoming common labels for this future phase. Whatever innovations characterize the Experience Age, today’s workforce must be ready to adapt and make future technological changes work in our favor. The workplace will transform again and job descriptions will change. The constant is that mobility and agility will still be keys to success. This is certainly a case where we can apply the lessons we learn from the past to help us adapt to change in the future.
Let’s look a little closer at where we saw skills playing a role in workplace changes of the past.
It’s easy to draw a comparison between the growth of machine production during the Industrial Revolution and the spread of the internet at the beginning of the Information Age: both dramatically transformed the nature of work and set society on a path to greater and greater change. In today’s workplace and in the future, we will keep using our technology skill to enhance efficiency and improve communication. We will also encounter better and faster tools for automating customer service and manufacturing. Coding and digital design have emerged as in-demand skills and will likely remain important in the future.
As we move forward, technology will continue to be a central part of the workplace. The medical field, for example, is increasingly relying on technology to provide more accurate diagnoses and better care. Workers with a growth mindset, who remain willing to learn and able to stay on top of new software and hardware alike, will be better able to keep up with changes in their chosen career field.
Your problem solving skill is essential in times of economic change and development. As we saw this week, rapid change sometimes creates conflict or other issues. In the Industrial Revolution, we saw how people used problem solving and collaboration to gain rights for factory workers. Now, in the Information Age, problem solving is helping people figure out new ways to earn money in the gig economy, such as driving for companies like Uber.
It’s hard to say exactly what circumstances we will need to adapt to in the future, but that’s exactly what your agility skill is all about! As we’ve seen, sometimes one invention or one change can set the economy on an entirely different course, which leads to ripple effects in all areas of our lives. Agility helps us not only to be prepared for the unknown and the unpredictable, but also to use our decision making, careful thinking, and creativity to overcome obstacles and be successful even when it’s not possible to prepare in advance.
Source: Strategic Education, Inc. 2020. Learn from the Past, Prepare for the Future.