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How to Keep Your Skills Sharp for the Future of Work

Posted by Guest Post on Oct 20, 2020 5:16:00 PM

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Keeping your skills sharp for the future of work requires knowledge of where that future is headed. The recent pandemic has accelerated a change that was slowly occurring throughout the whole workforce. As a whole, technology has been disrupting industries around the world with advances such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. However, remote work has been a new change brought on due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a change that has caused the loss of many traditional jobs.

In fact, Time recently released an article discussing how artificial intelligence and machine learning were taking over the jobs lost due to Covid-19 faster than ever before. As the workforce continues to change and be disrupted by technology, it will be important for employees to update their skillsets to ensure they stay relevant to the future of work. Doing so will require a mix of new technical skills and gaining knowledge in key areas.

Attend a Trade School to Pick Up Knowledge

As far as updating skills go, attending a trade school is a great way of achieving your goal. Trade schools, sometimes called vocational schools, are specialized forms of education that prepare students for a specific career. Most trade schools have a curriculum that doesn’t last longer than a year, which makes them far more efficient than graduate school.

Additionally, trade schools are often cheaper than graduate schools. More and more companies are beginning to partner with trade schools in order to hire graduates of these institutions. The best part about a trade school is that they offer online classes which means current full-time employees can earn a degree in a technological field while still retaining their current job.

Thinkful is a popular example of a trade school that gives potential students the option to pursue careers ranging from data science to digital marketing. Industry mentorship and deferred tuition make this a great option for anyone looking to learn the skills needed to remain relevant in the future of work.

Learn Technological Trends

Besides simply pursuing a tech career, it may be proactive to start watching the technological trends of today. As mentioned, artificial intelligence and machine learning are two fields growing at a quick rate. These fields will soon enter every industry of business and begin to change the way all work is performed.

Studying the professionals working in these fields now can give a good indication as to which skills will be important to the future of work. However, these two fields are just the tip of the iceberg. New companies are constantly emerging from tech trends. For example, entire video game companies, such as Oculus, have emerged due to the introduction of virtual reality. 

Rather than focusing on trends of the past, try to identify how the skills you use now could be applicable to modern trends. While your technical skills may not line up with current tech jobs, you may have the soft skills needed to launch a dynamic new career. Technical skills can be trained, but personality cannot.  

Look into Coding

On the topic of technological trends, coding is one of the smartest skills to learn if staying relevant in the future of work is your goal. While coding has emerged and become popular as a skill within the last decade, it is set to launch many more fields. Deciding on a specific coding language, when there are so many options, can be difficult.

Recent reports show, however, that Python is one of the best languages to learn due to its versatility. While there are certainly a number of useful coding languages, learning Python is one of the quickest and most useful options for the future of work. Knowledge of this language would allow you to tackle many different tasks and would surely make you an asset in the future and now. 

In order to update your skills for the future of work, consider taking the time to watch how technology is changing the way work is performed. Adapting to the future of work is as simple as taking trends, which can be witnessed today, and developing the skills needed to fit oneself into those trends. Specifically, focusing on developing substantial knowledge and skills with all things tech-related is one of the best ways to prepare for the future of work and the disruption that may come.

This guest post is written by Artur Meyster and may not be copied or published without permission. Artur is the CTO of Career Karma (YC W19), an online marketplace that matches career switchers with coding bootcamps. He is also the host of the Breaking Into Startups podcast, which features people with non-traditional backgrounds who broke into tech.

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Topics: Recruiting, HR

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