‘Mommy, Daddy, I want to be a quantum cryptologist,’ your child may tell you one day soon. Here’s how to prepare.
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Thanks largely to two trends — modernization and automation — the job market has arguably changed more in the last decade than in the previous half-century. Some professions have changed drastically while others have disappeared completely.
But for every job that fades into obsolescence, new ways of making a living surface. With a bit of foresight, those of us who are tasked with setting up future generations for success (as parents, teachers, counselors and more) can help. Regardless, entrepreneurs, from the business veteran to the aspiring startup king (or queen), can benefit from looking at these job titles and considering the impact they might have on the rising workforce.
1. Professional esports athlete / professional gamer
Competitive esports is a booming industry, and in 2019, according to Newzoo, an industry analytics organization, revenue is expected to top $1 billion. Gaming’s growth, in turn, can be connected to the rising popularity of the streaming platform, Twitch, which has an average of 15 million users tuning in every day.
The most popular platform here, commanding over 14 million followers, is NINJA, where the average user spends 95 minutes each day.
Given these entities’ growth, it’s hardly a stretch to conclude that some percentage of the teen recreational gamers out there will inevitably be inspired to pursue their passion as a streamer and/or professional esports athlete.
Takeaway: Embrace the fact that gaming no longer carries a negative stigma. One of the most important qualities any entrepreneur embodies is a deep passion for his or her craft — so it’s safe to expect no shortage of opportunity within this industry.
2. Director of emotional intelligence
Emotional intelligence (EQ) is defined as “the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one’s emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.” At the heart of EQ is heightened self-awareness, which is a truly powerful trait that can empower an individual, but can also be trained for. EQ’s potential? Gary Vaynerchuck, author of AskGaryVee, recently said, “We are on the dawn of an era where emotional intelligence is about to become the single most important trade.”
I couldn’t agree more.
There will be an ongoing need for this “skill of the future” for the current and rising workforce to exemplify high levels of EQ, which will ultimately be a part of a brand’s core values.
Takeaway: You first need to take the steps to increase and improve your own emotional intelligence. Embrace the many resources available, and you’ll develop a professional asset that will soon become invaluable.
3. Quantum cryptologist
Accenture recently surveyed 6,672 executives, to reveal some of the biggest tech trends to expect in the coming years. One of those trends, DARQ, is an acronym which combines the names for a series of emerging technologies:
- Distributed ledger technology
- Artificial intelligence
- Reality (both virtual and augmented)
- Quantum computing
On Dec. 21, 2018, the National Quantum Initiative Act was passed into law — and supports a 10-year plan designed to accelerate the development of quantum information science and technology applications (quantum computing being computing whose processing power far exceeds that of today’s computers),
While the quantum era will bring positive developments, a quantum threat also exists — to data and national security. As such, there will be inevitable opportunities to educate a rising cyber-minded workforce to combat this looming threat.
Takeaway: Knowledge is power, and in unfamiliar territory, you’ll need to be proactive in educating yourself. You don’t need a Ph.D. to understand whether a new sector is right for you. But you do have to take actionable steps. Keep up to date with the news, legislation and industry movement to effectively arm yourself with the right information.
4. Chief modernization officer
Making the digital leap is no longer an option; it’s a necessity for survival. How established a business is doesn’t matter; failure to modernize is a recipe for only — failure. Notable examples include:
- Blockbuster’s being unable to transition to a digital model
- Toys ‘R’ Us’s delay in in deploying an effective ecommerce strategy
- Borders’s failure to embrace online or ereader models early enough.
These losses have not been in vain, however, as companies that have survived in a digital era have provided us lessons about the need to embrace constant innovation. What’s also been evident is the need for leaders who can effectively navigate uncharted territory with crisp modernization vision — a critical focus virtually all organizations in the future will need.
Takeaway: Be an avid learner of past mistakes. There isn’t a magic 8-ball that tells us how the market will change, but there are signals and trends we can learn to spot to evaluate the impact the market will have.
5. Smart home architect, builder or designer
In 2018 a jaw-dropping 48 percent of U.S. consumers polled by Parks Associates said they planned to buy at least one smart home device; that number constituted an even more astounding 66 percent rise year-over-year. The expanded investments and continued technological improvements we’re seeing are evidence of the sales-driven market revolution surrounding connected homes.
As the smart home concept continues to evolve, a new wave of home builders/architects will be tasked with designing these homes to be “smart home ready” and to engineer how homes can be integrated with next-gen tech. In short, the traditional home designer and architect we know of today will be completely reimagined.
Takeaway: Think outside the house — really. Embrace a smart-er perspective and don’t limit your creativity. Challenge yourself to find what is missing today in smart home automation, or what could make your life just a little bit easier. Then let that passion fuel the rest of your journey.
Although certain future professions may seem improbable or even unrecognizable for us today, we can be sure that the generations to come will find new sources of meaning and pave new paths to success. In the meantime, we can do our best to provide a foundation for that success by encouraging our kids to embrace the vision, learning, and innovation that will make all these things possible.
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