How to Create a Future-Proof Career
If the coronavirus pandemic has shown us anything about work and business, it’s revealed just how fragile our careers truly are. We went from having one of the strongest and most robust economies this world has ever seen to a 35 percent stock market collapse and tens of millions of jobs lost – and it happened in a matter of days!
From an individual perspective, this should get you thinking. Are you in a stable career? And if not, are there ways you can create a future-proof career so that uncontrollable forces – like dangerous viruses – don’t compromise your paycheck?
5 Tips for a Future-Proof Career
Nobody could’ve ever predicted that the airline industry would freeze over or that restaurants would be forced to close up their dining rooms for months at a time, but that’s what happens in an unpredictable universe.
You can’t control everything, but you can strengthen and stabilize your chances of long-term success by implementing the following tips and principles.
Choose an Essential Product or Service
There are certain products and services that people still need – regardless of whether the economy is booming or everything’s going to hell in a handbasket. These are the niches you want to stake your career to.
Housing is an example of an essential commodity. No matter the state of the economy, people need shelter. In fact, it’s one of the first things they’re going to pay for. Owning cash flowing real estate is a great way to secure your financial future.
Medical care, supermarkets, home services (like plumbing or appliance repair) – these are all essential industries, too. How can you start and grow businesses in these spaces?
Automate for Maximum Efficiency
It’s not enough to hitch your career wagon to a stable industry. You really need multiple streams of income. This means you must streamline intensive processes to free up time in your schedule to attend to different businesses.
Continuing with the example of housing, a rental property investor can hire a property management company to handle things like rent collection and tenant screening on their behalf. This would free up time to focus on creating another stream of income that operates independently of real estate.
Stay on the Cutting Edge
The worst thing you can do is become mesmerized by your current success or status. As the economic collapse has shown, even the strongest economy – micro or macro – can crumble in a matter of days. The question is, will you be ready the next time it happens?
It’s not enough to be proficient today. You must understand that technology evolves and your future is directly dependent on your ability to adapt along with this evolution.
Surround Yourself With Smarter People
You are the combination of the people you spend the most time with. The problem is that most people hang out with people who are equally or less skilled/talented/smart. Thus, they end up stagnating or declining. The real objective should be to develop relationships with people who are significantly smarter and more skilled than you are. It can feel uncomfortable at times, but this is how you grow.
People who are skilled and talented tend to thrive in any environment – recession or expansion. And if you’re close with them, they’re going to bring you with them. Put yourself in proximity to talented people and good things will happen for you!
Groom Your Soft Skills
It’s not enough to have technical hard skills. The importance and relevance of these skills come and go as the marketplace evolves. Soft skills, on the other hand, tend to hold their value over many decades.
For example, don’t just become a good email copywriter. Become a good communicator. Don’t just become an IT manager, become an empathetic person who understands others.
Hard skills can be learned fairly quickly, but soft skills take years to develop. When an employer or future business partner identifies the right soft skills in you, they know there’s value beneath the surface. Now’s the time to cultivate these skills!
Take Control Of Your Career
Don’t let uncontrollable factors put your financial well-being in jeopardy. By working towards a future-proof career, you can enjoy financial stability today, tomorrow, and for decades to come. And that, friends, is how you sleep easy at night.