And so if you have been feeling that the job market has been betting against your future, you are not alone; the main themes over the last 5 years have been, in this order: juniorization, recession and today, automation.
- Is this going to change the face of the job market?
- Is this going to take away senior jobs?
- Are we all doomed?
- Can we do anything about it? – yes! Plenty.
And with things going fast like crazy, now is the time to step up the game of mastery and relevance.
Here are 5 ways to stay ahead.
1/ Focus first and foremost on your personal and professional growth
If you were to forget that whole post only to retain one thing, it would be this: you are responsible for what you do in your life, and you have more choices than you think, even when the environment is working against you.
Working in a corporate can have its perks, but the collective energy can make us lose sight on the most important assets we have: ourselves.
Your best way to weather trends and ups and downs? Invest in your own growth first.
- Do you fear becoming obsolete or replaceable?
- Or/and not being able to stay in the race?
- Where are you behind the curve?
- What can you do about it?
- Consider continuous education: not knowing all the ins and out of your area of expertise is a career sin
- Certifications in new skills that are adjacent to what you do already so they can enhance your current job
- Keep an eye on the latest trends: crypto, ESG, blockchains, AI- you need to sound knowledgeable enough and bonus point: to have an opinion about it
- Invest in personal and professional development: having a sounding board and constructive feedback from an outside source will help you save time in trial and error and accelerate your growth – consider therapy, coaching, being mentored and mentoring as tools that you may want to dip in as needed.
Conduct your career and your personal development as a CEO would. Get clear on your long-term goals, and make everything you do count towards those.
2/ Make the human connection your priority
If you have been using the new version of ChatGPT, you have seen how amazingly “empathetic” it can be.
But!! as the 2020 Pandemic has proven, nothing can replace the human connection. We need each other, physically or online, and no amount of AI will make up for the feeling of helping and being helped by another human.
Future-proofing your career will include making human connection a priority. This means: connecting more often with your network, participating in more industry conferences and gatherings, being more visible in your workplace, mentoring, presenting, and being on expert panels.
It may feel like another item on an already long and overwhelming to-do list. But it is also an essential part of what can bring you more energy and will make you feel impactful.
Experiment, take calculated risks, and consistently show up as the expert in what you do: build your reputation in everything you do.
3/ Develop, excel and master your leadership qualities
Do you want to outlast juniorization, recession and AI? Turn your attention to those soft skills and hone your leadership qualities.
- What are your innate leadership qualities?
- What do you need to get better at?
Make these questions a monthly a recurring theme in your life.
The more you pause and observe with the intention to correct, the better and quicker you will be at catching your blindspots.
Going back to my first point, make it not only about staying employed but mostly about you driving your career. The more intention you have on where you want to be in months and years, the less susceptible you will be to short-term changes.
4/ Master your career story and personal branding
Why do you do what you do? At the core of our careers choice is the want to be impactful and to matter.
- How have you been making a difference, at the job, in your relationship, on your environment?
- How did you improve workplaces, challenged opinions, and created value?
Answering these questions will help you connect the dots of your experience past and present, and can shape how you could envisage the future of your career. As you start owning the narrative of your career story, you will be more attuned to what makes you an expert and uniquely positioned in your field – your personal branding.
Put together, your career story and your personal branding constitute the cornerstone of how you show up to interviews, at the job, and in what you do – something that no AI could ever replicate.
5/ Make your vision your ultimate guide
At the end of the day, what really matters is what you want for yourself in life – your vision, which should be both your starting point and your endgame.
Future-proofing your career is about giving yourself the physical, mental and emotional tools to adapt to your environment and weather crises and changes and other “life happens” events.
Your journey is your responsibility – finding your path back to it can well be the best redirection you could give yourself.
Next steps: pen and paper and make a plan.