Before we discuss the list of top skills nowadays, let’s imagine the world we can live in 10 years from now. The demands change over time, so we must pinpoint the final destination when deciding what vehicles will help us get there.
The World of 2030
“John likes healthy lifestyles and plans to live a long life. He feels he needs to rethink his approach to career and education to have enough resources for retirement. He will likely need to acquire more than one career throughout his lifetime. New intelligent machines are entering offices, replacing workers on some tasks, and augmenting them in others. Moreover, everything we interact with is converted into data. John plans to learn how to use it and make data-based decisions. It's easy as there are numerous tools for augmented learning. Education is interlinked with blockchain allowing investors to gain profits from the educational tokens after John starts earning money. He hopes he is lucky to find a new job despite the high competition.
He works from home, and his several projects operate in different countries. He is now paid instantly with smart contracting and has profited from the medical data he keeps in a secured blockchain ledger. Most of his life has moved online: he meets friends in the Metaverse every evening. But he enjoys it, as thanks to V.R. and A.R., he can now feel if someone smells bad. His fridge is good at ordering food, so he only sometimes goes shopping.
Besides, there are lots of other useful things people do online now. Open autonomous platforms have substituted traditional organizations. And now people can solve problems collaboratively unlike old-fashioned institutions which proved ineffective.”
The wind of change
According to IFTF forecasts for 2020-2030, some specific drivers can reshape the workforce landscape. Here are the main promises and some hints for you to consider.
Increased longevity of life: are you OK with more careers? New media ecosystem: be prepared for meetings in the meditative bubbles.
Rise of A.I.: learn how to empower your skills.
Development of data-processing power: Consider the potential for data -analytics and how to use it.
Collaborative, decentralized organizations: get ready for new social tools for work and operation.
Global interconnectivity: from now on, call yourself a citizen of earth.
Remote work: any ideas on how to motivate yourself?
Growth of population: higher competition will most likely occur.
Do you feel optimistic about such a future? It is one of the possible scenarios that might occur. No matter how tomorrow will play out, it is clear that it will be vastly different from today's world.
How to become the one who will ride the wave? Please make yourself comfortable, and let’s look at soft skills, history and value to understand why it is the new oil on your journey to a successful future.
Soft skills in a nutshell: How did it all begin?
Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation, and Stanford Research Center outlined the importance of soft skills in 1918. The "personal qualities" were defined as seven times more critical rather than technical skills and knowledge for probable success or failure.
The U.S. Army introduced the term soft skills in the late 1960s. It referred to skills needed to inspire troops, manage teams, create strategies, and win battles. Though the concept was further criticized for being vague, it was included in the U.S. Army training manual in 1972.
Interest in soft skills has risen through the years. Companies set training and development programs for employees to develop their interpersonal skills and ensure a creative problem-solving approach. In the 21st century, soft skills are a key difference and a requirement for success in the workplace. Hand in hand with hard skills, they give ground for brilliant career development.
The World Economic Forum research states that 50% of workers will need to reskill themselves by 2025. The organization's latest list of top skills includes innovative and creative thinking, complex problem-solving, learning and communication, stress tolerance, and improved communication. If you look at the "problem-solving" area, awarded the five prize-winning places, you will see it all leads to creativity if we define it as the ability to create new solutions to existing problems.
Foreseeing the future of creativity.
“Why do we need creativity as a leading soft skill?
Innovation: Creativity is essential for coming up with new ideas and finding new ways of doing things. Without creativity, innovation would be limited, and progress would be slowed.
Problem-solving: Creativity is an important tool for solving problems. It allows people to think outside the box and come up with unique solutions to complex challenges.
Personal fulfillment: Being creative can bring a sense of personal fulfillment and satisfaction. Engaging in creative activities can help people to express themselves and explore their passions.
Competitive advantage: In today’s job market, creativity can be a valuable asset. Companies are looking for employees who can think creatively and come up with innovative ideas.
Adaptability: Creativity allows people to adapt to changing circumstances and to think creatively in new and unfamiliar situations.
Emotional well-being: Engaging in creative activities can help to reduce stress and improve mental health. It can also help to boost self-esteem and confidence.
Communication: Creativity can help people to communicate their ideas and thoughts in an effective and engaging way.
Creativity is a fundamental human need. It is a natural human drive, and it plays a vital role in our personal and professional lives. It is the backbone of art, design, music, writing, and many other fields, and it is critical for the development”
Allow it to overwhelm you. This answer was created by the famous chat GPT tool. It generates human-like texts using artificial intelligence and natural language processing. The plagiarism level is 8%. Though it lacks humor and an easy style, the topic is covered well.
It's not 2030 yet, but the world is abuzz about A.I. already writing texts, making code reviews, painting, music, and many more. Many start-ups are still on the testbed, but we must admit their future potential is overwhelming. But if we look behind the scenes, sooner or later, it will usurp many of our hard skills and turn them into a pumpkin.
But what if we address it with a more creative task? Let’s imagine we look for innovative business ideas related to "sky" and "food." Can it make something tasty out of that?
“One creative idea that combines the themes of sky and food could be a rooftop restaurant that serves dishes inspired by different regions and cultures from around the world. The restaurant could have a ceiling made of glass, allowing diners to enjoy the view of the sky while they eat. The menu could feature dishes that are traditionally served in different countries, such as sushi from Japan, tagine from Morocco, and ceviche from Peru. Special events such as a stargazing dinner or a rooftop brunch could also be organized. Another idea could be an outdoor dining experience that simulates a sky-like setting, like a planetarium, with projections of stars and planets on the ceiling and walls, to give a feeling of dining under the stars.”
It makes quite an impression for a program that is not supposed to have abstract thinking. But still, if the jury gets more attentive, it will see that our virtual conversationalist picks the low-hanging fruits as it analyzes the apparent associations. They are “high, stars, planetarium" for sky and "restaurant" for food. Let alone that every 3rd hotel already facilitates rooftop dining places, and even planetarium restaurants exist. So, there is nothing novel about these ideas.
Human creativity goes to unthinkable depth and can generate more complex concepts.
If we stick to the restaurant, we can suggest a menu on the wall or far away behind the building and ask the visitors to choose dishes using the telescope. All the tables and attributes around can be decorated as different planets.
Or we can think of a café high in the mountains with a hang glider, a paraplanner, or a glass elevator to get there. The menu can be ordered before the flight, and food can be delivered by drones right to the table when you arrive.
Or we can visualize a spaceship with "cosmonaut-style" food on the board for visitors.
If you recall that food is often eaten to cope with stress, we may propose creating a "stress-reduction" menu on planes to cease cortisol levels for those afraid to fly.
Or we could create a unique virtual meditative game where people with eating disorders fly in the sky instead of attacking their fridge. Special body sensors can track if they followed their diet.
Or we may think of some healthy snacks or sweets for children made like cosmic objects. Or a book with cosmic heroes who cook healthy food and invite kids to join them.
Or imagine rooftop greenhouses on every building working on solar power.
To get inspired on our creative journey, we can ask the Midjourney application, famous for using artificial intelligence to create composite images, to help us visualize these ideas. Though the photos below do not represent them perfectly ( just look at the Dracula-style castle), it's a great tool to work on further.
The list of ideas, feelings, and associations we can generate using our creative potential is endless. No machine is capable of that as of now. Though we can use it to boost our potential, the depth of its creation capacity still needs to be improved.
Grow Your Creativity Muscles
If you think creativity is an inherited birthright, it is far from the truth. This skill is trained the same way as our muscles. Here at Conceptology Education center, we provide training on creative approaches and methods that can be used to implement innovative concepts and sharpen your wit.
Businesses and marketing solutions highly demand it. According to McKinsey, there is a straight correlation between creativity and financial results. The companies with a high creative score have 67% above-average organic revenue growth and 70% higher return to stakeholders.
Besides that, the highest value of this soft skill is that the creative mindset can help you be on a roll in every aspect of your life.
1.The10 skills you need to thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/01/the-10-skills-you-need-to-thrive-in-the-fourth-industrial-revolution/
2. Future Work Skills. https://legacy.iftf.org/uploads/media/SR-1382A_UPRI_future_work_skills_sm.pdf
3. The Future of Work in the Era of Human-Machine Partnership. IFTF.
4. Creativity’s bottom line: How winning companies turn creativity into business value and growth. https://www.mckinsey.com/capabilities/mckinsey-digital/our-insights/creativitys-bottom-line-how-winning-companies-turn-creativity-into-business-value-and-growth
5. Midjourney. https://midjourney.com/
6. Chat GPT https://openai.com
7. Soft Skills https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soft_skills
8. A Study of Engineering Education. https://www.nationalsoftskills.org/downloads/Mann-1918-Study_of_Engineering_Educ.pdf
9. What Are “Soft Skills” and Why Are They So Important? https://www.habitly.com/blog/what-are-soft-skills-and-why-are-they-so-important
10. 13 Mind-Blowing Things Artificial Intelligence Can Already Do Today. https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2019/11/11/13-mind-blowing-things-artificial-intelligence-can-already-do-today/?sh=1c04231b6502
11. Restaurants photo credit.