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How to future-proof your career path in 2020 (and beyond)

https://www.fastcompany.com/90445947/how-to-future-proof-your-career-path-in-2020-and-beyond

fastcompany.com

How to future-proof your career path in 2020 (and beyond)
I still remember my first meeting with the vice-president of my department more than 40 years ago. I was a junior developer at IBM and when he asked what my professional goals were, I told him I wanted to be a CEO. He nearly fell off his chair.

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An Uncertain Future

  • The past decade gave rise to the 'Gig' economy, spawning one-click app-based transactions.
  • Artificial Intelligence and automation are further transforming how people live and work.
  • The old-school jobs are now at risk of being obsolete or irrelevant.

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Future Proof Your Career

Future-proofing your career to stay relevant isn't about learning how to code or going back to college.

It is about having a career plan with a long-term vision, taking into account the current job-market conditions, economic factors, emerging opportunities, personal interests, and family realities.

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Shrinking Life Cycle of Jobs

A life cycle of a job is shrinking rapidly, and if you're not re-inventing yourself or pivoting on time, you are rendered out of work sooner than in the past decades.

We need to check our career plan and ask ourselves what skills need to be developed to pursue future opportunities, in this shifting economy.

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Your Blueprint

To create a career blueprint, you can take the help of your teachers, coworkers, mentors and family members, while the tools that can help you are the TED webcasts, social media sources, and online industry groups.

This change-management exercise is crucial to not be a victim of dying industries due to not having a career path to guide you in the changing economy.

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Align With Your Interest

In a shifting economy, thinking laterally, and identifying neglected sectors which are aligning with your interests, is a powerful trick to gain a professional advantage.

Gravitating towards your interests is the way to go for your career survival, and it is critical for self-innovation and re-invention.

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See the Writing on The Wall

Sometimes, entire industries fade away, and it is not easy to know what will be the economic trends in the next decade.

Getting clues from the current political scenarios and global economic conditions is important, and it helps us understand where our current sector or industry is headed.

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The Jobs That Are Going

AI and Automation reshaping jobs is not not just a possibility anymore.

  • Self-driving cars are in the process of replacing Uber drivers.
  • Cashiers are being replaced by self-checkouts whereas entire stores are being wiped out due to the online shopping wave.
  • Algorithms are replacing professional jobs like lawyers and accountants.
  • General medicine stores and medical personnel are also feeling the heat of automation and AI.

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Own the emotion

You can’t change an emotion you don’t own.

Accept responsibility for its existence.  Because an external event always precedes your experience of an emotion, it’s easy to assume that the event caused it. But as long as you believe it was externally caused, you are going to be a victim to your emotions.

Name the story

Emotions are the result of both what happens, and of the story you tell yourself about what happened.

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  • A helpless story: it convinces you that any course of action is pointless.

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Goal setting needs active participation

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  1. Write goals that align with your values. If your career goals aren’t supporting your life goals, you are bound to have a miserable existence.
  2. Set goals that you can control. Unless every aspect of the goal you set is under your control, you have very little likelihood of ever achieving it.
  3. Think big. Set your sights higher than most might believe practicable.
  4. Give yourself time. Start by visualizing where you want to end up in life, then the things you need to get there are pretty easy to plot out.
  5. Plan for success. Do not ask “What if I fail?” but rather “What if I succeed?”
  6. Manage your risks. Success will carry some measure of risk. Consider the risks and weigh them against the reward.

Losing your job: consider the bigger picture

Losing your job: consider the bigger picture

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Keeping a sense of control

When we battle with unsolvable problems, we start to question our abilities. This creates feelings of helplessness that undermine our ability to succeed.

While it is natural to feel demoralized and pessimistic, you have to address your negative feelings so they don't interfere in your efforts to find work. To overcome your negative emotions, you have to regain a sense of control.

List your skill sets

When you've lost your job and want to find a new one, start with the skills that you know you have. For instance, a restaurant host will have people skills, communication skills, the ability to multi-task, and problem solve.

Recording all your skill sets will remind you what you have to offer an employer. It will help you identify potential roles to which you might be suited.