Fighting back against automation: must-have skills revealed


Tech is advancing into high and low skill jobs alike. Cybernews asked experts what traits do we, as human beings, need to focus on to ensure that we still have jobs after the robot revolution.

These are not your ordinary experts of the cyber realm. This time, I’ve included answers from people representing a variety of professions and fields – from veterinary to religion – to see how they envision the future and the skills that it will require.

Adaptability

Essentially, it seems that experts agree on one thing – whether you like change or not, you need to be able to adapt. You can no longer expect to have the same tasks and work routine for years.

“The ability to learn, unlearn, and relearn is paramount,” Joshua Spencer, the founder of FortaTech Security, said. Naturally, cybersecurity, with ever emerging threats, is one of those dynamic fields.

Just scroll through the LinkedIn platform – you’ll discover the weirdest job descriptions and skills added to people’s profiles. While in some cases they might just be fancy words, in others, it means that people are actually learning new skills and are putting them into practice.

“Individuals who can quickly acquire new skills, embrace change, and stay current in their fields are more likely to remain valuable contributors in the workforce,” Dhanvin Sriram, the founder of Prompt Vibes, an AI tool, said.

Sounds exhausting, doesn’t it?

Empathy

If we’re to adapt to the new work reality, we need to think about the qualities that machines can’t take away from us. An obvious difference is that robots lack fundamentally human traits such as compassion and empathy.

“Empathy is a vital skill to avoid the threat of machines. It enables genuine emotional connections and is especially crucial in fields like veterinary care, where compassion and rapport are essential for optimal animal care,” Mollie Newton, a veterinarian and owner of PetMeTwice.com, told Cybernews.

Emotional intelligence will play an important role in the job market, it seems.

“Empathy encapsulates fitting yourself in someone else's shoes, understanding their concerns and problems, and making them your own. This is crucial for ensuring the smooth functioning of the company along with the maintenance of a sense of community within the enterprise, and empathy is something robots cannot deliver; therefore, empathy will take you a long way!” Ozzi Jarvinen, founder of Iglu, an HR firm, told Cybernews.

Creativity

Robots excel at repetitive tasks, and we don’t mind them taking over boring and mundane chores. As long as those tasks aren’t our bread and butter, of course. So what can you do with the extra free time on your hands? Be creative, which is a human trait that can’t be easily replicated or automated, experts reckon.

“Imagine a scenario where a company faces declining sales and needs fresh ideas to revive its product line. A creative thinker would approach this challenge from various angles, employing empathy, intuition, and knowledge of current trends to generate innovative solutions. This requires human creativity at its core,” Michael Alexis, CEO of teambuilding.com, told Cybernews.

Experts from many industries share the same opinion. For example, Kimberly Wall, entrepreneur and founder of BibleKeeper.com, believes that creativity “fuels innovation and problem-solving, enabling us to adapt and contribute to society's advancement.”

As per Jamal Farah, Chief Information Officer at Roowaad, creativity can mean many different things, from artistic creativity to problem-solving abilities.

“Another important skill, I believe, is emotional intelligence. This involves understanding and managing our own emotions, and empathizing with others. Robots might be able to mimic human emotions to a certain extent, but they can't genuinely feel or understand them.”

Relationships

AI works well for structuring processes, but it cannot give you a sense of interpersonal communication, Armine Pogosyan, IT HR Director, Dyninno Group of Companies, reckons.

“Imagine a life where you are surrounded by nothing but robots. Wouldn't you lack a human being there – just to talk, to feel that you are understood, to initiate a real, valuable, human-to-human interaction?”

AI, Pogosyan is certain, won’t replace the ability to create relationships – both among colleagues and clients – that serve the alignment of business and communications strategy.

The most important skill will, of course, be the ability to work and manipulate the new technology, Richard Gardner, CEO of Modulus, reminds us. Outside of this most obvious skill, is the building and development of relationships.

“That’s something that will remain important to staying employed and productive, regardless of how opportunities emerge over the coming years and decades,” he said.

So, it seems like we’re going to be even more human in the new world, where robots do the dirty work and we focus on the things that make us who we are.


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