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So, what is a successful career in the 21st century?

Thanks Heather McGowan and Thomas Oppong !!Thanks Tanya , Jed and Maya 

I have just spent an amazing week with Tanya (an accountant and my daughter  , Jed (an architect and her life partner ) and Maya (their baby and my grandchild) – and we have been talking about the future of work, plans, how AI and machine learning will disrupt – and the importance for them to work in an environment that is in line with their values , belief system and the future  that they envision for themselves. 

As always – Heather McGowan’s posts come in  a timely and opportune way – and again reminds us of the importance of learning how to learn 

“A career is a portfolio of projects that teach you new skills, gain you new expertise, develop new capabilities, grow your colleague set, and constantly reinvent you as a brand.”  Tom Peters – In Search of Excellence  #futureofwork 

The Skill and Qualification That Got You The Job is Not What You Need to Build Career Longevity – says Thomas Oppong  https://medium.com/swlh/the-hard-skill-that-got-you-the-job-is-not-what-you-need-to-extend-your-career-longevity-7637be727c52

Things change at a rapid pace, and if you do not keep up to date with the changes that occur – your qualification and skill will very quickly become redundant.

One thing you can be sure of ….. there will be massive change happening in your field of expertise …. and your world of work today won’t be the same tomorrow. 

So how do you stay relevant? 

Your performance, skill, and ability will decline with time unless you deliberately take control of your personal development, and undertake a regime of continual learning (or vocational education). 

Your qualifications and technical skills – will need to be kept up to date and you will need to know how to harness the AI and machine learning that will make your job that much easier and efficient- so that you become better, smarter, faster .

More and more relevant will be your soft skills — a combination of people skills, communication abilities, personal habits, emotional intelligence, time management, and leadership skills.


Continual personal and technical development. 


If you want to continue to be an expert in your field – you will need to keep up to date – however it might be wise to re-skill  , gain new expertise, and reinvent yourself to keep going.

As Heather McGowan shared with us – the average millennial in Australia will have 17 different jobs in a variety of jobs and industries – and that’s by the time they are 40!!!

So what’s the answer?

How can we get ourselves and our children ready for the 4th industrial revolution?

We need to teach them to “learn how to learn”

We need to instil in our work environment an environment of continuous learning .

A law of nature comes into play – If you don’t continue to grow – you will stagnate and whither away. 

Continuous learning is the only way to survive in the ever-changing world of work. Self-education and a student like mindset – needs to be ingrained into our psyche as a daily habit. 

You need to continue to hone your current skills and develop new ones while enriching your mind. 

Then, when the time to adapt arrives, the transitions  will just flow.

So what does learning entail? 

Continual investment in your professional growth 

  • Connection, collaboration, continual learning, 
  • Finding mentors that you want to emulate 
  • Attending conferences, forums, workshops, 
  • reading 
  • Doing online courses 
  • Creating an unconscious competence 
  • hearing from experts 
  • mentoring others, 
  • Sharing your knowledge, 
  • Being part of a cross-functional project 
  • Continual review and feedback of your performance continual Professional Development 

So these are some of the tips that Thomas Oppong writes in “The Hard Skill That Got You The Job is Not What You Need to Build Career Longevity What a “successful career” means in the 21st century!

(Ik comment ….. I cant help myself……. go to www.bbg.business  nd join a forum!!! ) 

Use networking opportunities to engage with others higher up the corporate ladder. Use your contacts, such as a previous manager, colleague or mentor to ask for introductions if necessary. If there is an opportunity to speak at a company event, seize it.

If team management skills are increasingly becoming important in your field of work, perhaps you could ask and shadow your manager or asked to be coached by someone you admire in that position.

Say you’re a programmer. Why not study project management? Or let’s say you’re a graphic designer. Why not study team management?

“You should get better and faster at whatever your craft is over the course of your career, whether that’s coding, designing, researching, or something else. But if that’s the only area you improve in, you may find advancement more elusive than you’d expected, explains Ximena Vengoechea.

The rise of online resources and access to professionals anywhere means it’s easier than ever to improve yourself from your office desk or at home.

Equally important is the message personal learning sends out if you are employed; it shows you are investing in yourself and that your career is still in ascendance.

If you’re looking to climb the career ladder, develop people management skills. Leading teams and practical training programs are particularly effective because you can apply those skills easily. It’s important that you engage, discuss, and experiment with the knowledge you obtain.

To get started and take your career to the next level, assess how the skills you want fits with your overall career goals. It pays to know your readiness for a new level of responsibility. No matter where you are in your present career, take a minute to find out exactly where you are today.

Can you work both independently and collaboratively? Can you negotiate and still keep your relationship intact? Are you a team member or leader? Do you have a good relationship with your colleagues or managers?

The further you want to go in your career, the more decisive these traits will become — if the corporate ladder means a lot to you.

Wherever your next challenge lies, with a future-focused plan, you will prepare yourself for the future.

www.bbg.business

Posted on August 10, 2019

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