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The future of work: Five key skills to keep you ahead of the pack

A bucket full of info has been written about the future of work and what it will mean for leaders and employees alike.

Amongst all the hype, what certainly is clear is that now and going forward, adopting a proactive approach to managing your professional strategy has never been more important.

It’s all about remaining competitive and noticeable in our dizzyingly fast changing world.

  1. Strictly diarised, focused, diverse learning every single week

As our word rapidly evolves, we will also need to keep up.  Creativity, diversity of thought and a new knowledge mindset will be skills highly sought after by employers.  Sources of new knowledge have never been more available.  Snooze and you lose.

  1. Learning to embrace and use failure as an opportunity

No one likes to fail but to change we need to take risks, and failure goes hand in hand with risk-taking.   When employees know it is ok to make mistakes from time to time, and where a positive culture is in place, collaboration improves.


Failure and resulting evaluation and redirection also increases resilience as we feel more empowered in an atmosphere of less blame.

  1. Mastering the ability to switch off….I mean really really switching off

Have you heard of “infobesity”? Basically it’s a fancy term for the negative effect of the bombardment of stimuli and data that our brain has to deal with daily.  Cognitive overload is real and studies have shown that it has a negative effect on our health and work.

When we take time out – even a day – doing something different other than work, and preferably free from our online devices, our brain condenses some of the stimuli we have been exposed to and frees up some space.

  1. Gaining greater perspective from giving back to your community

Understanding of our own purpose and values is enhanced when you have the opportunity to help others.  Giving back, even an hour a week, is also a great way to increase engagement in teams.

Volunteering to help those who need it is now available really easily. (Check out vollie.com.au if you have a moment – I think it is a really cool new start-up in this space and connects you from your desk to an NFP that needs your skills.)

  1. Become comfortable with feeling regularly uncomfortable

Yep, as they say, change is, and will be the constant. Moving forward professionally (or personally) will always require us to face uncertainty and discomfort at some stage.  It is never nice, but again, a skill to master if you want to manage your career and develop yourself.

A mentor can help as a sounding board, or at least a few key, trusted people to speak to when you need to. Knowing that we all have to step into a head wind from time to time helps to as does mastering positive self-talk.

Remember, you are the boss of yourself. If you are ambitious and want to professionally grow, investing in yourself and others is a must do in the new world of work.

Lexie Wilkins, Culture and Employee-Engagement Expert and Director, 

Source: InsideSmallBusiness



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