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Future-proof your career.

The world we live in is constantly changing, much faster than it has been in the past few centuries. With Industry 4.0 upon us, there is a concern in the air. We’re unsure what to expect from it; and the biggest worry for most is that automation will replace all of our jobs one day, and maybe not one day anymore, but soon. Here are some tips for you to future-proof your career, so the ever-changing world doesn’t have to be such a big worry. What this means is that you’ll be slightly more prepared for anything that comes your way. Will this be enough to give you peace of mind?

Understanding Technology and Digital

Technology can be daunting, especially when you start to think of hackers and how anyone can access your information if they had the necessary skills. But, instead of going down a deep, dark hole and being scared of things you don’t completely understand, get to know them. Take courses and read up about how programmes you’re unsure of work and after you’ve done the theory, use these platforms practically online.

By understanding the unknown, you’re taking back that control. As artificial intelligence becomes more and more popular, we’re going to have to work side by side with it.

Be Open To Change

Change is scary and sometimes threatening, and that generally means people close themselves off to anything that scares them. Instead of doing that, challenge yourself and be open to the changes that could take place. Learn to expect that anything can happen, when we change our mindsets, we reverse the course of how we react to situations.

It is crucial for you to try and put a positive spin on the unknown and use what we already know to your advantage. For example, if you own a hardware store, we know that digital is on the rise and that people like to shop online. Why not start an online shop? Which could presently expand your consumer base while setting you up for the future at the same time.

Ashira Prossack suggests thinking about where you want to be in five years and then figuring out your steps on how to get there. These steps would be an excellent way to train your mind to think ahead.

Have an Online Presence

Expanding on the example of how you could prepare by being open to the changes coming, make sure that you have an online presence. Use the free social media tools that are available to us to market your brand or yourself (LinkedIn is an excellent example of this). A website for your store or brand is never a bad idea as customers are then able to understand your offering before visiting your premises. Encourage customers to write reviews for you online. Peer to peer recommendations aid the sales process a significant amount.

At the same time, clean up your digital profile. Devan Ciccarelli mentions that Googling yourself is never a bad idea and that getting rid of content that makes you look unprofessional is an even better one.

Network, Network, Network

Talk to and get to know people who are professionals or who are just starting in your industry. Keep open relationships with clients who you are no longer doing work for as you never know what they could mean for you in the future.

By being friendly with people in your industry, you have people who you can turn to when you’re unsure about what to do next. If you’re an amateur, you could learn a lot from those around you as well. Lastly, these people could be open to collaborations with you in the future, which creates more work for you.

Career Profiles suggest joining professional networks, keeping in contact with people you meet along the way and attending seminars. You can take this process into your own hands by organising a get together for people in your industry, and they will appreciate the invite.

Be Creative

The next tip is to always tap into your creative side. With the presence of AI and technology ever increasing, creativity is something that they do not have and cannot recreate. There are specific careers that digital will not be able to recreate and that includes acting, sporting and visual arts to name a few.

By thinking creatively, you’ll stand out from your competitors as well. Brainstorm for a few minutes a day, and you never know what new and fresh ideas you might generate.

Customer Service

As automated customer service is slowly but surely taking over, more and more people are left wanting the attention that they can only get from a human. Yes, the process can be much faster when all you have to do is click ‘one’ or click on ‘yes’, but sometimes, we want to speak to a consultant to help us with whatever issue we are facing.

Make sure that the customer service in your business’ or in the company you work for is excellent. Great customer service will leave a lasting impression with the client, and people remember when they have had a good experience with a company or brand. Excellent customer service is a good way to keep the customers you already have!

Keep an Eye Out

It’s important to keep up with the trends in your industry and to keep on predicting what is going to happen next in that industry. Keep an eye out on what is going on in the world, what other thought leaders are saying and take note of them. Keeping yourself in the loop will only aid in future-proofing your career.

Keep Learning

This tip relates to understanding technology and digital and networking, keep educating yourself when you come across something you don’t understand. Even if it has nothing to do with your field, read up on it anyway. You could assist someone with that information at some point where they could then help you in the future as well. The more you know, the better off you’ll be.

Go Out and Get Them

The latest Industrial Revolution has proven to cause some discomfort for many, and the only way to face the uncertainty that may come is to prepare for it. Follow the eight tips above, and you’ll be sure to future-proof your career.