15 years of revolution

15 years of revolution

I was talking with some friends last week and we were asking; just how long is it since the internet started to really impact on our professional lives? After a bit of toing and froing we decided about 15 years, most of us pinpointed 1998 as the year we started to notice it. As none of us were actually involved in the industry we thought that might be representative of most of the population.

What has happened since then has been the most turbulent evolution that the commercial world has ever seen and for the first time a single generation has had to adapt, learn new skills, accommodate wholesale change in the way business is conducted and accept a new truth – that, in most industries and professions, the barriers to competition have been falling like dominoes.

All this has meant that we have had to develop and call on our personal resourcefulness to handle this change. As with all tales of evolution those that have adapted have been able to survive and many thrive. For those who couldn’t? We have seen organisations perish like the dinosaurs and individuals have found themselves on the career scrapheap. Evolution has no sentiment read Darwin.

But as with all change, opportunity comes with it as well. Who could have predicted that it would now be possible to make a very good living by being an expert in single channels of communication like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter?

So what has all this to do with Personal Effectiveness? Everything.

To remain effective in a rapidly changing environment you have to remain relevant and this is the challenge that more people face today than ever before. And this trend is only going to continue.

The growth computing power is growing at such a rate that predictions are that by 2025 there will be a computer powerful enough to simulate the human brain.

That is just 12 years from now. What other machines and technologies will emerge between now and then?

In June I wrote about Horizon Scanning. Ensuring that you know what’s coming and its impact on the world that you work in will become increasingly important. As organisations look to create more flexibility in their employment contracts the responsibility will increasingly lie with you.

As computers take more and more of the functional roles, what will be left for people and what will Personal Effectiveness look like in 2025?

Here are three predictions.

1. People skills will become more valued as they become increasingly important in differentiating organisations and the services they offer.
2. Rapid learning and implementation of new skills will be must have abilities
3. Everyone will need to create and maintain a wide and deep network of personal contacts that are not dependent on industry sector

The relationship between employers and employees is changing and the rate of change will only gather speed.

Personal Effectiveness will increasingly become about the ability to handle rapid change.

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