CareerFuture of WorkFuture Proof Your Career in 2021

The pandemic, combined with ongoing exponential technological growth (and its accompanying job displacement), income inequality and public unrest, will only accelerate unprecedented disruption to industries, careers, jobs and lives. How do we plan for this?

How have you prepared for the Future of Work? Do you understand the key future trends? Do you know how your innate skills  ranging from emotional intelligence  to technical can transition into the future?    Yes, we said emotional intelligence! It seems that recent research from WEF demonstrates that many human skills will be in big demand, including everything from cognitive (analytical and critical thinking) to emotional (resilience, flexibility, and emotional intelligence).

Fortunately, the World Economic Forum has just published its latest Future of Jobs Report for 2020. In two parts (numbering 161 pages) Part 1. Tracking the Future of Jobs, and Part 2. Country and Industry Profiles, this is its third version (the first version was in 2016, and second in 2018).

It is a very thorough analysis to help individuals and organisations navigate their lives through a macro, future change and quite different from the first two versions. 

For example, the updated Top 10 Skills of 2025 List is vastly different from others published a few years ago. It leads with human skills such as analytical and critical thinking; innovation and resilience; etc. and finishes with technology at number 10. Here is the complete list:

  1. Analytical thinking and innovation
  2. Active learning and learning strategies
  3. Complex problem-solving
  4. Critical thinking and analysis
  5. Resilience, stress tolerance, and flexibility
  6. Creativity, originality, and initiative
  7. Leadership and social influence
  8. Reasoning, problem-solving, and ideation
  9. Emotional intelligence
  10. Technology design and programming

Here are a few other themes:

  • Reskilling: 50% of all employees will need this by 2025 due to double displacement of pandemic and automation.
  • New Jobs: 97 million jobs could be added due to technological disruption, which outnumbers the predicted jobs displaced by technology of 85 million.
  • Pace of New Technology: It will remain exponential; so much so, that the time spent by humans and machines on current work tasks will be equal by 2025.

Some of these changes may seem quite drastic and leave many questions about the future of human work. However, economist Professor Klaus Schwab, WEF’s founder and executive chairman is still optimistic about the opportunities that can be created. The same technological disruption that is transforming jobs can also provide the key to creating them — and help us learn new skills. To quote Schwab about technological disruption “We have the tools at our disposal. The bounty of technological innovation which defines our current era can be leveraged to unleash unlimited human potential.”

What does this mean for our career clients? Strategically, IntegralCareer has designed a career consulting process which is absolutely right for the future. There are two types of analyses: 1. Individual Client Analysis (to clarify and express complete skill sets with evidence and impact); traits, values, patterns, and what role elements are required to thrive, as well as 2. Future of Work Analysis to help clients understand how to transition their existing skills and develop new ones into the future. We endeavour to supply the best version of both types of analyses which is often not provided by more traditional career consulting which is dominated by psychometric testing, superficial CV writing, and job sites rather than in-depth analysis of evidence-based competencies and future of work trends.

IntegralCareer is ever committed to unleashing talent in every human being, but we also know that people need help, rigorous understanding what’s integral to them (especially innate skills, and values ) and to the future: this is what we will keep delivering and contribute to as many as we can on this planet.

Gwendolyn Parkin

Director of IntegralCareer, VP HBS Club London, consultant, speaker and course tutor supporting clients create careers that transition into the future of work.

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