Work as we may not know it

January 14, 2013

future of workDavid Dowsett of ABC local Queensland radio and I chatted about my recent article on the future of work and employment.

So have a read, have a listen and as always I’d love to know your thoughts on the Future of Work and Employment


The good news is that there will be employment way into the future, there has to be. Things will always need to be done, built, sold, fixed, transported and accounted for and always will.

Secondly, for the foreseeable future Australia’s employment rate will be high and in the mid 90%.

The other wonderful, or perhaps disconcerting news, depending on whether you’re a half full or half empty kind of person, is that we’re not going to need furriers, blacksmiths or elevator operators much anymore.

Now I know that’s kind of obvious, but these professions were great honourable and inspiring jobs in their day, using cutting edge technology and machinery to fulfil a society’s dreams and demands.

Tomorrow’s employment space, made up of a dwindling baby boomer cohort and increasing X,Y,Z and A generations will have 6 careers and 14 jobs. They will work towards the completion of tasks and project, not time allocation; in industries we cannot yet name, nor fathom, using skills that today are unimaginable.

By 2025, 60% of us will be working digitally and remotely, not tethered to a fixed workspace, but rather in a time and place that best suits the work and the people involved.

Some of us will work as intraprenuers, inspiring our host company’s internally. Others will work as solopreneurs shaping their own destiny and pioneering new paths forward.

Many of us will be working collaboratively co-creating locally, nationally and globally in virtual tribes, connected by a trillion digital things that bestow on us constant contact with, insight to and manipulation of, our physical and digital worlds.

Global unemployment will remain high as over the next three decades we add two billion people to our planet and 18 million to Australia.

Despite this it will remain difficult for employers to find talented employees, as we move through a tectonic shift of inventing and reskilling ourselves to reshape and repurpose existing businesses and professions, as well as forging new horizon industries, practices, business paradigms, ethics and professions.

Education and training will remain a constant to grease this transformation of knowledge, the internet will continue to help to spread this information, but with the overwhelming mountains of data we’re drowning in, businesses and individuals will soon value “wisdom” more highly than gold and oil and professions and industry’s will rise to mine these riches.

Our most prized vocational possession will be our ability to span the duality of working simultaneously in a physical and digital world.

Tomorrow’s work landscape will also see the increasing use of robots, virtualisation, telecommuting and 3D printing further blurring the intersection of human and machine and igniting the question of whether human or machine is best-fit for the task at hand and does it matter?

Standing still is no longer a viable option.

Every job, every profession, every human activity is currently being redefined. Those that are destined to succeed are now standing firm-footed on the precipice of change eagerly scanning their horizon searching for tomorrow’s possibilities and necessities.

Listen now:

Foresight lane….

January 3, 2013

2013At this time of year we’re all wondering what might be ahead for us and how the year might shape up.

Jason Jordan of Perth’s 6PR and I took a stroll down foresight lane to see what major trends might be ahead and how we can begin to make sense of them.

Have a listen now:

Happy New Year

January 1, 2013

new yearLive on Perth 6PR breakfast radio bright and early on the first day of 2013 to chat about what’s ahead for us this year, including popular foods, drinks, names, fashion and key trends all with a splash of early morning post New Year’s eve merriment.

Have a listen now: