Even before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the way we worked and the skills we needed to succeed in our respective fields was shifting. Increased reliance on data to inform business decisions. The automation of job duties that made some workers redundant. The value of incorporating sustainability into everyday processes on the bottom line. And then COVID-19 shut down the world. Racism and inequalities came to dominate every conversation. And as companies grapple with DE&I initiates and engage with a remote workforce, the way we work today looks drastically different than from just a few years ago. What trends, skills, initiatives and equity will we face in the years to come? Each month, we talk with industry leaders in their fields to discuss the changing evolution of the workforce and the skills needed to stay competitive.
Owning Your Financial Decisions
42:16We ended 2022 with a bit of an upheaval in the job market. Mass layoffs at big-tech companies were splashed across the headlines. And more organizations are speculating that layoffs may be part of their fiscal plan in the coming months, reacting to the possibility of a looming recession. So in this episode of the Future of Work, we’re bringing the workplace a little closer to home—making sure that you have a financial contingency plan if you don’t already have one in place. To get some tried-and-true advice on weathering any potential upheaval in the future, we turn to UC Berkeley Extension instructor Richard Lehman.
Where Did the Trust Go?
46:07Who is steering the ship? Today’s workforce is more empowered than ever with many finding that maintaining a work-life balance is an important part of how we work. The pandemic opened the door to enabling greater flexibility around when and where we work. Job-seekers are prioritizing company mission, values and participation in DEI when they evaluate a potential role. Employees have shown that work can be done and done well remotely. So why the call back to the office? Why are products like an automatic mouse mover hitting the market? Where and why did the trust go? To kick off the new year, let’s talk about going forward, not backward. Let’s help managers and leaders of all types shift from driving productivity through force and move toward inspiring and motivating this empowered workforce.
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47:48This month, we chat with former guests Barry O'Reilly and Vaneese Johnson to future-cast what's in store for 2023! They look back on 2022: Did we learn anything new? Did any of our systems or practices change? They look forward to 2023: Will there be new ripples or upsets in the work place? What should leaders and employees do to prepare and succeed in 2023?
Are We Moving Toward a Gig Economy?
39:23What was once considered side hustles, the gig economy has become so much more. In fact, it’s quickly becoming a trillion-dollar industry that offers more choices and opportunities. Whether it’s partaking in the rideshare business as a driver or working as a consultant in the project economy, are we seeing the demise of the full-time employee? What does this mean for organizations who need employers—or contractors—with hyper-specialized skills in order to remain relevant? What are the pros and pitfalls of this new gig landscape and who is able to thrive?
The Humanizing of Flexible Work
48:18Across the globe, people have created effective remote working environments for themselves. Statistics vary, but the majority of employees say that working remotely will be important to them in the future. Not all workers have the option, but more than half do, and when offered, almost everyone takes the opportunity to work flexibly. So with more staff solely interacting through digital means, does the loss of face-to-face interactions mean less networking, creative collaborations and impromptu hallway meetings? Does it also mean more realistic work/life balance, flexibility and increased productivity? Remembering that it’s still humans doing the work, even if you can’t physically see them, how do we need to design work and the workplace? What is the impact as more employees return to an office, but in a hybrid schedule? Who is getting left behind or forgotten?
The Democracy of Data
41:07There’s no ignoring it: Data is driving business forward. Data informs good decision making. And as a result, companies are empowering their employees to explore, understand and communicate with data. As we look at the future of work, every role at every level of an organization will need data-literacy skills.
The Hybrid Role—Fusing Technical and Soft Skills, Part 2
39:55Specialized digital skills are becoming increasingly important and yet jobs are not becoming hypertechnical. Instead, they are becoming increasingly hybrid, mixing human and technical skills—and employers and workers alike are still struggling to keep up. For example, job postings are cropping up with qualifications in data analytics, project management and critical thinking. But those same postings are also requiring excellent communication skills, problem solving and time management. How do you balance the hard with the soft? In this second part, we talk about those people skills and how to use them to build your personal brand.
The Hybrid Role—Fusing Technical and Soft Skills, Part 1
37:00Specialized digital skills are becoming increasingly important and yet jobs are not becoming hypertechnical. Instead, they are becoming increasingly hybrid, mixing human and technical skills—and employers and workers alike are still struggling to keep up. For example, job postings are cropping up with qualifications in data analytics, project management and critical thinking. But those same postings are also requiring excellent communication skills, problem solving and time management. How do you balance the hard with the soft?
Closing the Great Skills Gap With Post-Degree Learning
33:28AI and automation are making some jobs obsolete or creating new jobs. We’re also witnessing the great resignation, brought on by myriad reasons. In a McKinsey Global Institute report, “In the United States, we project there are about 17 million people in jobs that may see less demand. Over the eight countries we study in our report, 100 million people may need skills to perform different occupations in growing fields.” So if you’re thinking about or perhaps in the midst of a career change, you need to get up-to-speed quickly. Or are you being redeployed into a new role at your organization? Here’s how and why to build your capabilities.
Learning—and Unlearning—With Intent
38:14The World Economic Forum recently declared a reskilling emergency as the world faces more than one billion jobs transformed by technology. No longer an ideal but an expectation, executives and employees must continually refresh their skills to keep up. To do so, continuous professional education is the key. But are you learning with intent? Intentional learners are experiencing all the same daily moments anyone else might, but they get more out of those opportunities because everything—every experience, conversation, meeting and deliverable—carries with it an opportunity to develop and grow. Here’s how you can learn with intent.