All the studies, surveys, analyses point in the same direction: automation and robotization are revolutionizing the world of work and, in turn, the occupations, learning and status of workers. Overview of what lies ahead by 2030.
Digital technology in the cognitive age
A report from Dell and the Institute for the Future suggests that the first phase of digital technology (imitation of logical thinking) is now giving way to the second phase, namely the cognitive age (the capacity, for the robot, to imagine solutions and interpret data). For the curious, be aware that the third phase, not expected before 2030, will be the virtual human… Practically speaking, with this “destructive creation” phenomenon, 60% of the occupations in 2030 do not yet exist. So it is understandable that employees with low cognitive skills are worrying about their fate. But what do the 4000 senior officers interviewed by Dell say, half of whom admit that they do not know what will become of their company within three years.
New jobs for all
With this second phase will appear new occupations; while some are completely unknown today (and with good reason!), others are emerging. Do you think, one day, that it will be possible to become a robot consultant or a waste designer, transforming your company’s waste into unique pieces or works of art? If you are considered to be the driving force for service, be aware that you can make a profession out of becoming an amusement designer; your laugh will be your work tool to motivate your company’s employees or to take care of them. If you are more concerned about those around you, the position of “Chief Happiness Officer” to ensure the well-being of your colleagues is made for you.
Evolution of learning
In this context of robotization, it is difficult to train for occupations that do not yet exist. You now have to be quickly functional in new positions and be able to learn new knowledge rather than knowledge already learned. This point Xavier Niel – founder of school 42 – has well understood: selection on motivation (and not a diploma), learning based on the “pull” mode (teaching the student to search for the right information himself) and on collaboration (listening, dialogue and negotiation). In short – no teachers, no lectures, but 650 computers available 24/7 so that IT developers can work by project (“peer-to-peer-learning”) while releasing their creativity and ingenuity. Precursor or amateur? Time will tell…
Adaptation of forms of work
The adaptation of companies to robotization is often delicate, slow and sometimes ineffective. Thus, your specific expertise that you offer as a freelancer or consultant is more and more sought after. From now on, subcontracting is more a strategic willingness to use specific skills than a simple adjustment variable. The company faces a real war of talents, in which the external resources manager is given more prominence to the detriment of the buyer of services. For you, this new form of work seems to be the best of both worlds: the benefits of the self-employed worker (flexible work, variety of projects) and of the employee who is an integral part of the team, for the duration of the project.
While robotization can excite the consumer in us, it can raise a lot of anxiety among employees who are not trained or who are resistant to technological changes. By always being interested in what’s new in your field and stirring up your thirst for learning, you will be better prepared for this new world.