CareerOne: Steps to make you a survivor - Michelle Gibbings

Featured in CareerOne, I was invited to share my thoughts on how to survive the changing nature of work. Read my contribution here.

SURVIVING the changing nature of work will take more than being employed in what is seen to be a secure industry, such as healthcare, cleaning, services and logistics.

Workplace expert Michelle Gibbings, author of Career Leap: How to Reinvent and Liberate your Career, says the future of work conversation a year ago was around the effects of artificial intelligence, automation and robotics.

While that has faded into the background, she says it has not gone away.

“If you currently work in a profession or role that is not affected (by COVID-19) it can be easy to lull yourself into a false sense of security,” Gibbings says.

“In today’s working world, there is no such thing as a job for life or a recession-proof career.”

She says effort, focus and deliberate action is required to survive.

“Getting comfortable starts with building your resilience for the inevitable change that will arise and adopting a growth mindset, so you are ready to adapt,” she says.

“Proactively determine what any current and potential future changes may mean for you, your profession and industry.

“With that knowledge to hand, you are better able to decide the action to take.”

Be clear on the value you offer prospective employers.

“Everyone brings specific skills and ways of operating to the work they do; Gibbings says.

“It’s essential to be able to articulate that value and explain how you can help an organisation, business or client achieve their objectives.

“However, what’s valued changes over time, and so you need to keep your value offering current.

Workers in care or knowledge roles will be the least affected by artificial intelligence and automation.

“While the predictable, routine and process elements of roles will be automated, what can’t be automated is the relational, emotional and leadership skills needed for work,” Gibbings says.

“Consequently, having strong self-awareness and emotional intelligence is just as important as the technical skills a person uses in their work…

Career success requires a constant desire to learn and a willingness to equip yourself with new competencies and capabilities,” Gibbings says.

This can include reading books on topics that expand your knowledge base, undertaking micro-credentials or enrolling in online courses.

Meeting new people helps to identify what roles are available, expand awareness of potential next steps, discover how things are changing and identify what opportunities are coming up.

“As part of this process, identify the core people in your network who make up your career advisory board,” she says.

“This board may include a sponsor, mentor or career coach, who help you navigate and adapt to the changing working world.

“They provide advice, share insights, constructively challenge your thinking and actions, and provide connections and ideas.”

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