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What Are The Career Issues We Are Facing Now?

We are still using 20th Century teaching in the 21st Century. 

This is a 100-year gap! 

The focus of our education should be preparing ourselves for “a-lifetime-of-careers” rather than “a-career-for-life”.

#1: Lack of Clarity and Commitment in building & designing a Career Portfolio

With technological advances, new career opportunities are created rapidly. The jobs of today did not exist 10 years ago and with the acceleration into the Fourth Industrial Revolution, professionals will find themselves in a more complicated future. The average half-life for general skills is 5 years and for technical skills is 2.5 years. In other words, workers of tomorrow will have to incorporate continuous learning into their lifestyles. 

It is inevitable that millions of jobs/ functions will be replaced by automation, however, millions of new jobs will also be created! 

Instead of naively thinking that you will not be affected, a better question to ask yourself is, 

Am I equipped with the right tools to stay relevant and irreplaceable?

#2: Impact of Job Loss on Individual Workers and their Families

Job loss could be due to retrenchment, acquisition and merging of companies, and/or organisation restructuring. 

When a person loses a job, it is more than just a loss of income. The job loss can impact every individual in myriad ways:

  • Economic: Loss of financial security and limited purchasing power may possibly mean that the worker (and the family) will have to adjust to a new lifestyle. In some families, it may even necessitate other family members to seek employment to supplement the family income. The individual may feel embarrassed and hurt about having to disrupt family members’ lifestyles, may become sensitive and increase tensions among family members.  

  • Social: It is common for many people to perceive themselves from the work they do. A loss of identity can be painful for some people, a loss can also cause some to become depressed due to feelings of being alienated from society.

  • Psychological: Most people want to be recognised and affirmed for the work well-done and gained respect from colleagues and others. Without work, there will be fewer opportunities for people to demonstrate their competence. For some workers who are accustomed and enjoyed being in positions of authority, the loss of jobs mean they no longer have the control they used to have. Hence, the loss of jobs for some can be equated to erosion of one’s self-esteem and confidence.

Work is not everything, but work is an important part of our lives. A question to ask yourself,

How can I do meaningful work and be irreplaceable?”

#3: Demands of Different Life Roles

At any stage of a person’s life, the person plays a variety of roles – a worker, a learner, a parent, a child, a community member etc. All these activities are important as they contribute to building an overall personality of an individual, and also bearing in mind that these activities require time and energy. The inability to keep a balance frustrates many workers and this may put strain on career.

On one hand, we want to work to earn an income and be productive workers; on the other hand, we may feel trapped by work demands and become unhappy workers. Many of those who are not able to manage their careers may even succumb to ill-health.

No one likes to be in a helpless situation. A question to ask yourself, 

Are you creating the right conditions for yourself to succeed?”

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