A Look into the Crystal Ball: Future Work Skills

The Institute for the Future (IFTF) has recently published a study about the most important work skills for the future. Yet, those who expect to find a guideline will be disappointed.

Due to the rapidly changing demands of the labor market, the study has found that foresight and adaptability will be the key to success. The top ten skills for 2020 listed by the IFTF therefore contain abilities like “sense-making”, “transdisciplinarity” or “novel and adaptive thinking” (see graphic below). What sound like the predictions of a horoscope, which will prove true no matter what, is actually symptomatic of the driving forces behind the increasingly automatized and interconnected work force.

Indeed the changing demographic, the rise of smart machines and new media, the progressive globalization and the changing structures of organizations are causing disruptions in the labor market that oblige individuals and organizations to rethink the way they approach career paths. As machines replace humans in an increasing number of tasks, and augment them in others, humans need to find what they are uniquely good at and what makes them indispensable.

While the study might for many parts be preaching to the converted, it is nevertheless interesting to read it as a symptom of the changing attitude towards work. The study reflects the decline of a rigid occupation image that is increasingly substituted by freelancing, working in projects, job sharing and of course a great variety of career opportunities. The key statements of the IFTF anticipating an even more flexible and fluid job market for the future reverberate with the reality as we already know it.

We find ourselves in world of skills rather than jobs. Therefore, finding the right job opportunities for one’s skill set becomes more and more important. As the job platform JANZZ.jobs matches skills with occupations and projects, it is the ideal means to connect individuals with the right work opportunities and to help them reassess the skills they need or discover possible career paths. JANZZ.jobs contains all the skills of the world.