What Skills Will You Need When Your Product Becomes a Service?
Tim was interviewed for the Globe and Mail's Future of Work column
Tim was interviewed for Leah Eichler’s Future of Work column and quoted as follows:
So what does this mean for employees in the work force? While conventional wisdom dictates that everyone must hone their coding skills, that might not be the case. In fact, it’s the soft skills that will assume greater value, according to Berlin-based Tim Leberecht, author of The Business Romantic and a consultant who helps companies with workplace culture and transformation.
“Ironically, as process-driven, linear work gets automated, more subjective tasks that require empathy, imagination and a nuanced understanding of meaning will become the stronghold of those with a broader, generalist skill set,” Mr. Leberecht said. “This favours liberal-arts majors or artists,” he added.
For example, he cites the increasing popularity of chatbots, or conversational robots and the need to keep improving on them. Mr. Leberecht predicts that chatbots will increase the need for “conversation design,” which will emerge as “a new critical skill set.”
“Already, companies like IBM are seeking to hire playwrights, poets or filmmakers who have a keen eye for human behaviour, high emotional intelligence and are adept at designing for ambiguous, complex verbal and non-verbal interactions [conversations],” he said.
To prepare for this future of work, employees and freelancers need to understand that the marketplace will favour those that are adaptable, that can adjust to new circumstances and requirements, he explained. The marketplace will also favour extreme subject-matter experts and generalists. Those caught in the middle will lose out.
“A few years ago, the whole world began to tout coding as an essential skill set, just for us now to realize that coding may in fact be delegated to AI and no longer count as a differentiating skill in the job market,” Mr. Leberecht observed.