Summer officially begins on June 21st, and many of us will be daydreaming about enjoying the long, warm days ahead.
But with all the recent talk of artificial intelligence (AI) and robots taking over our jobs, should you really be thinking of cookouts and pool parties—especially while automated technology doesn’t need a vacation break?
Is automation a threat to your career?A 2015 poll by Monster showed that the overwhelming majority of workers didn’t believe that AI, bots, and automation posed a threat to their jobs. However, more recent research published in the McKinsey Global Institute report “A Future That Works: Automation, Employment, and Productivity” revealed that in approximately 60 percent of all jobs, automation could replace at least a third of the tasks currently performed by humans.
How you can remain employableClearly, if you want to remain employable, you need to prepare for what’s coming. Fortunately, there are several things you can do over the summer to develop the skills robots can’t replace. Keep the following tips in mind:
Enhance your people skills Nurses, therapists, educators and other professionals rely on their ability to interact successfully with people. That’s why it’s unlikely they’ll be replaced by robots.
But even if you work in a completely different field, people skills are increasingly crucial. Here’s why: customer experience is set to become the single most important reason consumers choose a specific brand. Robots might eventually be able to deliver a good customer experience. Yet researching and developing it is something that has to be done by people who have empathy for others so they can understand their motivations and reactions.
Enhance your people skills by volunteering at a local soup kitchen, homeless shelter or at any other organization where you’ll interact with people. You can also look for opportunities at work, for example by asking your supervisor for more outward-facing assignments.
Become a thought leaderDevelopers need access to industry expertise in order to develop effective bots. If you possess a certain level of expertise in your industry or profession, you can build on it to become a thought leader.
Use the summer to start your own blog. Make sure to consistently post informative, engaging content that’s relevant to the audience you want to reach. Stay on top of developments in your field, and promote yourself on social media.
By positioning yourself as a thought leader, you’ll become more valuable to your employer while simultaneously increasing the odds that you’ll be asked to consult on automation for your industry.
Learn technology skillsIf neither of these solutions applies to your work situation, why not spend your summer learning the technology skills needed to develop and manage automation?
There are many opportunities to learn everything from coding languages to cybersecurity. Online bootcamps, local community colleges, and even Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) are all viable ways to set your first steps in the field of technology.
Now, with the above tips in mind, you can turn the long days of summer into an investment in your career. By continuously honing the skills needed to remain employable in the age of AI, you can look forward to a bright work future.
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