Industry 4.0 is here and so are you. Time to adapt.
“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”
— Alvin Toffler
There have been a few industrial revolutions in the course of mankind’s history and all of them have one thing in common — they’re all disruptive. They turn the tables on prevailing industries, from which new fields and markets emerge.
Now the world is transitioning into the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0) that harnesses the potential of technological innovations. This means a range of opportunities for workers of all backgrounds and educational levels are arising.
But for all of the opportunities that the new economy will bring, there are stark skills gaps that must be addressed.
Today, disruption is not only limited to technology, products, and services but is impacting the global workforce. Industry 4.0 is bringing about drastic shifts, requiring a new set of skills for employment.
Over one-third of skills (35%) that were considered important in the workforce in the last five years have already been changed across industries and geographies.
You do. What’s important is to realize the gaps in what you don’t know.
Such changes in the nature of work require continuous learning of hard and soft skills. However, the literature on technology’s impact on jobs and skills shows that there is an increasing premium for soft skills that are unlikely to be fully replaced by automation.
New jobs are more likely to demand cognitive and soft skills. Hence, the most successful candidates in the near future will be those with higher-order skills such as critical thinking, analyzing, problem solving and communication. Soft skills such as self-awareness or metacognition, motivation, curiosity, teamwork, grit, resilience, and adaptability will also be in high demand.
Anyone who wants to be marketable or even a part of this foreseeable future workforce needs to improve the following skillsets to stay relevant in the age of Industry 4.0.
Figure out how you can take one thing and put it in a different context. The results are rarely the same.
2. Emotional Intelligence
A machine can’t easily replace a human’s ability to connect with another human being, so those who have high EQs will be in demand. Practice by doing. Talk to more people. Learn how to get comfortable by realizing that people aren’t so different.
3. Analytical Thinking
A person with critical thinking skills can suggest innovative solutions and ideas, solve complex problems using reason, logic and evaluating arguments. Practice with deeper thinking. Instead of skimming over topics or issues, ask more questions. You’ll get more answers.
4. Growth Mindset
A person with a growth mindset understands that their abilities and intelligence can be developed. People can become better at anything with practice and patience. Find something you want to get better at, no matter how small. Practice, test it out, persevere.
5. Judgment and Decision Making
As technology increasingly takes away menial and mundane tasks, it will leave humans with higher-level decision-making. Being decisive and sticking to an action plan is critical as it helps you arrive at your destination faster.
6. Interpersonal Communication Skills
Effective communication is the key to collaborative success. Learning how to communicate information, feelings and meaning allows people to create things mutually in the material world. Once again, practice by doing. There are resources to learn these skills but practice will encourage growth.
7. Diversity and Cultural Diversity
As our world and workplaces become more diverse and open, it is vital that individuals have the skills to understand, respect and work with others despite differences in race, culture, language, age, gender, sexual orientation, political or religious beliefs, etc.
8. Technology Skills
In the advent of emerging technologies, equipping one’s self with technological skills is imperative. This could mean learning code, software, internet marketing techniques, etc. Every industry needs technology in some capacity to grow. Find out what your industry needs.
An essential skill during the 4th industrial revolution will be the ability to see change not as a burden but as an opportunity to grow and innovate. Practice adaptability by putting yourself in difficult situations. You know there’s something you want to try but being shy, or some manifestation of insecurity is holding you back. Good. There’s your sign to do it.
10. Complex Problem Solving
Don’t let the word ‘complex’ scare you. Problem-solving in large part is a combination of many individual skills. New experiences come with their fair share of challenges and solutions can be arrived at in a number of ways. Experience new things. Overcome bigger challenges.
- To cope in this rapidly changing world, we need to always be working on upgrading our skills.
- Keep learning, keep track of what you’ve learned & most importantly, use it.