Throughout history, the introduction of machines has always come with both good and bad disruptions. For starters, it presents lots of opportunities and makes work easier. However, like two sides of the same coin, it leads to job cuts as one machine can be deployed to do the work previously done by several people.
Obsolescence is perhaps one of the biggest disadvantages of machines but hate it or love it, automation is here to stay and moreso, with the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) and other smart technologies. Many jobs are on their way to becoming obsolete or highly automated, therefore, requiring little or no human intervention. To this end, human beings need to future-proof themselves by taking the time to learn.
Here are tips from BrighterMonday on how to avoid being made obsolete as automation picks up.
- Be Adaptable
Resistance is futile. The best strategy is to move with the times. As the nature of jobs and the workplace changes, so should you. If a new machine or system is introduced in your workplace or your industry, show interest. Do your research. Online platforms have most of the knowledge you need on any subject so be proactive and it will pay off. While you are indeed skilled in your area, remaining stagnant will only get you run over so never stop learning and do not be averse to change.
If an opportunity emerges in your company, do not be afraid of taking it up. If your job is at risk of becoming obsolete due to automation, it is time for you to move over to something else. You definitely have some transferable skills that can help you succeed in your new position. Do not be afraid of learning something different. Being adaptable is what will keep you relevant.
- Self-Learning is the Way to Go
While you can indeed attend classes to learn all these relevant skills, you can also train yourself. There are endless courses and materials online to help you gain new skills. YouTube tutorials are all the rage now and you can virtually learn anything here. Remember, you are responsible for your own growth.
In a fast-changing world, sitting in a class to learn something is great but why pay for a class when you can learn for almost free on your own? Moreover, what you learn in class may soon become obsolete so challenge yourself by using online platforms to learn new skills.
- Learn How to Manage Yourself
The future of work will greatly favour those who are flexible and the world will have many more freelancers. The gig economy is a modern reality and it is bound to keep rising. Therefore, you will need to polish up your skills so that you can successfully nail these freelance jobs.
But apart from great technical skills, you need to learn how to manage your time well. The days of 8-5 are first disappearing with the rise of the gig economy. Additionally, with this, you will most likely be working online for people in different time zones so African-timing will be your enemy.
- Sharpen Your Human Skills
While AI and robots can be coded to do most of the technical tasks that you can do, it remains to be seen whether they can be coded to master the soft skills. Competencies such as problem-solving are still valuable in the increasingly automated world. Even if robots take over most of your work, you will still be needed to do those things that only a human being can do well. So sharpen those skills and stay relevant.
- Learn Digital Skills
One way or another, every industry and career now applies some level of digital skills. Even manufacturing with all its machines. So, be conversant with the digital space. It is your friend and it will come in handy when you are stuck. As much as AI is taking over some roles in the digital space, it still requires human intervention so make yourself its friend by gaining the relevant skills.
On the other hand, AI is made using human analysis and intelligence. By having the right skills, you can make your own analysis of your job and see how you can improve the way AI works to make it more efficient and responsive to your needs.
The world is changing due to the rise of technology and automation. You do not need to look far to see this. Take the example of Uber and all the disruption it has caused. However, amidst all this disruption lies endless opportunities for those who are adaptive and futuristic. Do not fear, for the future is brighter for those who are willing to move with the times.