At a time when the pandemic, economic gloom and whatnots are having a field day, it is good to reflect on one’s future and relook at what’s in store for us. This is real in the case of a job hunter. Some are fortunate to be armed to the tooth with a litany of qualifications and experience to settle in the new normal, but what about you, fresh graduates, junior executives and aspiring professionals? How well are you empowered to take on the top skills of tomorrow?
Is the diploma or degree in your CV sufficient to give you the impetus to jump to the next level? Remember this adage: time has no holiday, dreams have no expiry date, and life has no pause button! But you can reset your career path by picking up some valuable skills and be on track to a bright future, which is already on your doorstep, knocking!
Sadly, a degree or doctorate has no bargaining power if you do not possess that defining edge to shore up your career prospects. The future is only 24 hours away, but only those with the extra ‘trimmings’ can hope to shine and glitter at the break of dawn. The more, the better: management and leadership skills, vision and foresight, thinking maturity and, most importantly, creativity and innovative mindsets. These self-empowerment tools grant you the sole right to claim your stake to be future managers. You can move the world with it or move with the world empty-handed.
The World Economic Forum lists 5 keys to unlock your potential in the job market five years from now.
In a statement presented by Michael Scriven & Richard Paul at the 8th Annual International Conference on Critical Thinking and Education Reform, Summer 1987,
critical thinking is defined as the ability “to conceptualize, apply, analyze, synthesize and evaluate information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication as a guide to belief and action.”
Critical thinking is a mode of figuring out a problem at the workplace (for example) that needs solving; the leader has to come up with practical answers or a reasonable solution to remove the barricade. By improving or improvising the situation, the whole department can function smoothly and efficiently.
In a company or organization, some issues need analytical and rational thinking to straighten things out quickly. These areas could be growth, personnel, operations, roles and structure of the work environment in totality. An analysis is beneficial as it enables the management to identify areas of weakness and then find workable approaches for eliminating any shortcomings.
Department Heads and Managers often find themselves in want of solutions in key areas such as marketing, finance, human resources, planning, growth and expansion. The ability to diffuse problems arising effectively allows the company to save on time, effort and money and move on with its daily business. Problem-solving is, thus, a crucial aspect of senior people whose responsibility is to ensure a harmonious conducive working environment that augurs well for productivity.
Self-management means taking responsibility for your actions and doing things as well as you can. In doing so, you demonstrate your reliability, adaptability and accountability. It also indicates you are an organized individual with creative ideas to handle a given project and get it done well for the benefit of all in your workplace. Self-management skills are essential to climbing the ladder (the ladder is limited, but the sky isn’t!). Consider being the Boss one day; why be bossed all your life?
Learn as you work and earn. This is the principle of lifelong learning, and active learning in workplaces is the perfect platform to chart your growth within. Big companies often introduce training and personal development programmes to enable their employees to sharpen knowledge, skills and problem-solving and customer service techniques. These modules are designed to enhance productivity and stay abreast of the winds of changes in the industry.
The World Economic Forum predicts that by the year 2025, the top 10 skills sought after by employers and companies are as follows:
What is the future going to look like 5 or 10 years from today? Experts warn it will be a “humans versus machines” battlefield and, to overwhelm the odds, we have to improve, improvise and innovate our skills factor. Nothing else is going to win the war for you and me. It is in the genomes of modernization – either one is encoded or exterminated!
These 5 Cs are your mantra into the future and beyond:
- Creativity: to come up with novel ideas and innovations
- Curiosity: to ask questions and seek new information, data
- Collaboration: to work closely with others to solve problems together
- Compassion: to take time to care about the colleague who needs your support
- Critical Thinking: to take ideas and apply them in practical ways
If something is blocking your way, remove it. If a door is closed on you, open another. And if the opportunity is missed, there are other endless possibilities. Upskill yourself today!