It often feels as if the only thing we really can count on today is that things WILL change.

As digital tools and the online space change, so will industries transform. That means we as employees must adapt or else we risk becoming obsolete. Instead, we all should hold this mantra closely: “Always Be Upskilling/Reskilling”. (We’re going to call it ABUR from here on out.)

Of course, the idea of updating our skills and knowledge over and over and over and over and over again is…bothersome. We may think it will feel like a never-ending cycle of “always learning,” all the while taking up the time we’d rather use for something else.

Yet in today’s business world, we feel it’s more than necessary: it’s survival.

Why ABUR matters

  • Globalization: Companies now outsource lower-level tasks to workers worldwide. To stay competitive, we must learn higher-level skills that can’t be replicated less expensively elsewhere.
  • Technology: Tech is changing at an unbelievably quick rate. For example, work that once required manual labor now often are automated. The advent of AI such as ChatGPT means that even people such as marketers, lawyers, etc. may find themselves “behind the times.” We all must keep up with the latest tools and tech.
  • On-the-job security: Workers who have skills in several areas means they have a better chance at either staying with their company and/or moving to another quickly, as needed. Constantly learning new skills means you can become indispensable to your employer. What’s more, the more adaptable you are, the more your boss knows you can transition into a different role, if needed.

Finding the time for ABUR

  • Make it a priority. Just as you prioritize eating and resting, set aside time in your day or week for some type of skill development/education. Treat it as you would any other important task. You needn’t do this every day; just once or twice a week should be plenty.
  • Break it into small “chunks.” Rather than dedicating 2-4 hours two days a week, try just 15 or so minutes three or four days a week. Doing this consistently truly will help: small things done frequently do add up!
  • If you commute by car, now is the time to invest in audiobooks, CD courses, etc.
  • The same goes for lunch breaks. If you spend every lunch with colleagues, don’t worry that you will have to skip these times every weekday; just bow out one or two days a week for some learning time.
  • Remember that learning new things can be hard. Be kind to yourself if you feel you’re struggling: just keep at it!
  • Make sure you keep up with trends and changes in your industry/business sector. Consider subscribing to newsletters, podcasts, etc. Think about attending conferences and/or webinars. (Ask your employer if they will reimburse/cover the cost; they often will.)

Our world is changing.

We simply can’t continue doing the same-old, same-old if we want to be part of the future world of work. Instead of thinking about learning new skills, etc. as a “career strategy,” we need to start looking at it as a way of life.

By prioritizing learning, breaking it into more manageable time chunks and using online resources, just about all of us can evolve and embrace the many changes coming our way.

Learn more about Debbie’s Staffing’s current job openings and apply/send your resume to us.