Even if one never intends on starting a business, thinking like an entrepreneur is still a tremendous asset. Understanding how one's work impacts the employer's business is critical. Having depth of knowledge in an area of expertise, as well as breadth of knowledge and curiosity in other areas, will allow workers to flourish through the uncertain times ahead.
While the world has undergone 3 prior industrial revolutions, this 4th revolution will be most unique due to the speed at which change will occur. The in-demand technical skills one year, may be obsolete just a few years later. Workers will therefore need to be open to continuously learning -- not just while in school, but throughout their lifetimes.
Today it seems that all good ideas go “viral” and success happens “overnight”. It’s not true. Many things take time — ideas need time to spread, businesses need time to build. This takes patience. Workers will feel an incessant need for speed, so it will help to know how and when to give things time. When and how to be patient.
The future is uncertain, and being able to adapt to continually changing circumstances will be key to not just success, but survival in the world of work. As some jobs disappear, and others are created, being able to accept change and adapt to it will give workers not just an advantage, but greater control over how the future of work impacts their lives.
Careers are becoming non-linear. Soon, as many as 11 jobs will be held in the course of one career. Finding, evaluating, and seizing each new opportunity will require strong relationships with oneself as well as others. Thus, all 5 domains of EI/EQ* — self-awareness, managing emotions, motivating oneself, empathy, and the art of relationships — will be key to future employability.
As work evolves, and jobs become more fluid, it will be essential that workers understand and can articulate the value they bring to employers. Many workers are already competing for "projects," as opposed to jobs, which requires an understanding of how to market one's experience, skills, as well as their own unique perspective on the work to be completed.
*As defined by Daniel Goleman in Emotional Intelligence.