How to kick-start your Skilling

Never has the need for skilling been more acute. Technologies are changing every 2-3 years, which is disrupting not just the way we work, but entire business models. Companies such as Uber, Swiggy, Amazon, PayTM, Google, Facebook, Tinder, are changing the way we travel, eat, shop, pay, read, socialise, date and much more. These and other tech breakthroughs have given birth to a host of new functions, job roles, industries and sub-industries.
In fact the need for reskilling applies to people currently in the workforce also - as per a World Economic Forum report, one in four adults reported a mismatch between the skills they have and the skills they need for their current job and according to the US. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 35% of the skills that workers need — regardless of industry — will have changed by 2020. Organisations are deploying some L&D initiatives but not fast enough or adequate enough. As a result, there is growing agreement among the working population that they need to be in-charge of their own education and reskilling.
“As a career returnship individual, you definitely owe it to yourself to think critically about the skills you do possess and evaluate them in terms of longevity, and application in the industries of today or tomorrow.”
In the first step of I-RISE, Introspect, we urged you to think about some of these things, and that exercise can come in very handy right now to help you arrive at your skill gaps. In fact, the goal should be not just to get at par with today’s requirement but to give yourself an edge by getting future-ready.
Of course, as usual, take it step by step, after proper research and evaluation - to ensure what you’ve started, sticks. Continue to do what you have been from the earlier steps of I-RISE too i.e. seek inputs from your connections - peers, bosses, mentors, follow visionaries and thought leaders for your verticals, and even do online job searches for your function/industry to see what kinds of skills and tasks are in demand today. This last one might be unnerving to begin with but will help you see immediately the areas you need to strengthen yourself in. Here in this blog post, we aim to bolster your endeavors above by bringing to you a few articles and repositories, that can give you a starting point for your research.
So, what are these new-age skills?
Well, first of all, to know which skills are going to be useful in the businesses of today and tomorrow, you can start here or here. In fact the second article, which is a repository created by NASSCOM on Future Skills India needs, can be very useful as an end-to-end resource for those in IT-ITes fields. It has been designed to enable discovery, continuous learning and deep skilling in 9 emerging technologies. It promises to aid your discovery of new roles and paths, help identify current skill levels and gaps, learn and assess the required skills from curated & customized content, and even gain certifications from globally accepted bodies. Definitely worth checking out. The first article is wider in scope, is powered by the huge quantum of data available to LinkedIn on skill relevance, and lists new-age skills across multiple functions and industries.
“While we hear so much today about advanced computing and technology skills, a first level take-away from this article can be that the skills of today and tomorrow are a wide set and that there is something for everyone.”
From the article it seems like the future skills are as much Data-driven like Analytical Reasoning, Business Analysis, etc that can help businesses make better decisions, as People/Brand driven like People Management, Social Media Marketing, Story-telling that can help retain top talent in this competitive landscape or find new and more engaging ways to reach your target audiences. Technology upskilling is of course critical for those in technology and affiliated fields, where both consumer facing tech like Animation, Game Development, Mobile App dev, as well as back-end business facing ones like Cloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence, Natural Language Processing etc are crucial to business growth.
Next time
In our next few instalments we shall be taking more at length about each function, the skills associated with them and some routes to upskilling. There is indeed a lot of information available, so much so that one can get lost. The key is to not make any rash decisions, we are after all talking about what you will do broadly for the next 5-10 years of your life, till the next skilling cycle hits.
The good news is that with a burgeoning online ecosystem for skilling that includes reputed institutes offering their courses remotely, online platforms akin to universities developing industry and future relevant course offerings at affordable prices, and offline institutes offering every course under the sun, there is no dearth of options to choose from when it comes to actually skilling yourself. We will talk more about it over the course of the next week. Till then, happy reading.

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