The modern workplace is transforming at unbelievable rate and the competition (job market) is getting intense in such a way that freshers are able to replace experienced hands at fraction of the cost, making middle age crisis more pertinent than ever in a professional’s life.
Another silent disruption in the making is, old ways of doing things are fast vanishing and so, becoming redundant is inevitable if one is not actively looking to upskill and keep himself on the top of the game.
I recently came across a very interesting article, which essentially talks about the key difference in approach of digital-first-startups to that of legacy corporate entities.
While the article’s core topic was about how these startups are driven by data analytics led decision making compared to established corporate entities still lingering on to their time tested silos of Product development, Marketing, BD, etc., the most stunning revelation I found was that these startups are getting more & more difficult to comprehend in terms of what is their exact nature of business.
These startups effortlessly shuffle their core line of business from hyperlocal delivery to grocery to food to furniture, all under a single setup, and what they have to make as their core line of business is camouflaged by deep layers of massive amounts of customer data, which an outsider can’t understand that easily.
There is no such thing as predetermined product development funda like in case of big corporate entities, rather the rich insights derived from the heaps of data are turned into what products/services they would offer to attain exponential growth.
What this essentially means is that, there’s growing amount of complexity these future unicorns are bringing to the business world that they’ll eventually impact the nature of work people will be doing in their regular career.
Middle age (career) crisis – How do you dodge this gigantic challenge staring at you intensely?
One way to go about it is upskilling yourself with trending new skills.
But where do you start off with deciding? You are bombarded everyday with tons of options in online/offline programs through Facebook feeds, Google remarketing ads, etc., You also get to read tons of reviews and opinion from your immediate network.
It all makes it very confusing to make an effective choice, clubbed with no guarantee of assured outcome post upskilling.
What adds more fuel to the fire is the buzzwords: BI, Analytics, AI, ML, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, IoT, etc., the more you take them for their face value, the more incorrect your decision making process will get you into. Because, end of the day these words are often used as a lure to get people who want to ride the wave to sign up!
We are unable to choose where to go, whose words to take seriously, how to craft a defensible career path, where to spend money & how much, etc.,
But before even you start with what should be your next step, are you clear about the exact self-development you need & where does it stem from? Don’t you realise that all these external noise is only making you more confused and in the end you stay the same without taking any step forward?
What if I say that the solution for this dilemma is very simple – i.e., just take one simple test to know what you need. And with that simple step, you cut out all the external noise that’s been ringing constantly and get to an extreme bright clarity of thought?
Solution: Go straight to your manager and demand an honest answer to this simple question – “If you have to tell me I am the most disqualified candidate for a particular role (outside of my current role) in the company, then what would that role be?”
Two things emerge out of this simple test – One, you know where you weakness lies; Two, you know what vacancy your company is desperately looking to fill at this juncture (your manager will almost always subconsciously think of a pressing vacancy of strategic importance, to assess your fitment and provide you with his honest feedback).
While knowing where you lack is pretty straightforward, what does matter what vacancy your company is struggling to fill in?
Remember, workplaces are changing with times and that’s because of having to tackle newer challenges. Only those who are capable of solving those challenges are going to be the would-be assets for the company.
And when you are clearly considered as disqualified to solve those problems, then you either learn how to do it or you have to live with an inevitable mid-life crisis!
Hope this article presents you with both sense of direction and clarity of thought! Please comment if so.