Future-Proof Your Career with the Right Skills, Competencies & Knowledge

31 Aug 2015

We live in a quickly changing world, dominated by a digital landscape littered with the latest technological innovations. Devices, technology, programs & software which permeate into every part of our home and work life whether we wish them to or not.

There’s no denying that the wave of technological revolution will continue unabated into the future as automation and digitisation offer businesses opportunities for advancements which were unimaginable only a decade ago.

Building a career in the modern age can be daunting as the relentless onslaught of new technology adopted by businesses far and wide becomes the new normal more with each passing day. The only way to succeed career-wise today is by adapting (though adaptation has always been key to survival hasn’t it), by staying on top of technological and digital trends within your sector and those likely to impact upon it.

So what 3 major skills, competencies and knowledge must workers, job seekers, and budding professionals acquire to remain competitive into the future? 

1. Multi-disciplinary skills will Become Vital

At the moment, possessing a combination of technical, social and industry-specific skills will help put you ahead of the pack, but in 10 years time or more it will be an absolute necessity to get ahead.

“Opportunities for individuals who are only suited, or only desire, one type of role, will become less available in the future. By learning more than one skill set, people will have a chance of advancing and have more choices in the work that they do”, predicts Glenn Smith, JobSpot’s Chief Financial Officer.

2. Cross-Cultural Competency will be Key

The University of Phoenix, in Arizona, produced a Future Work Skills 2020 Report which highlights the importance cross-cultural competency will play in the future. Understanding the inner-working of other cultures and understanding how they approach their work and why will become integral in the business dealings of tomorrow, especially when it comes to those companies operating internationally, or dealing with foreign partners, investors and so on.

“For example, if you get work in Japan, you’re going to need to know that the values and success factors there are very different to Australia’s…in Australia we’re very focused on youth, while in Japan, they’re much more focused on tenure and age. There is respect given there to people who have been there for longer. So unless you’ve got that cultural sensitivity, you could make some major faux pas working internationally”, points out CEO Lisa Annese of Diversity Council Australia.

3. Understand the Future of Social Media & how it will Impact Your Career

A new study has uncovered that computer modelling of your Facebook “likes” can understand your personality and predict your behaviour better than those closest to you! The more “likes” you generate, the more data the computer modelling has to work with and the easier it is for it to assess your personality.

You should keep this in mind into the future suggests Ms Wu, a researcher, who points out that such modelling would also be able to deduce how often the person consumed alcohol or took drugs. 

So in theory, in the not too distant future, employers and recruiters could use this technology to spurn those applicants they deem “unsuitable”, as well as allowing employers to scan through Facebook profiles of job applicants to match personalities and skills to the job using computer modelling before any interviews are even conducted.

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