On my first day at work as an analyst fresh from university, my friend (and ex-classmate) who joined on the same day jokingly told me “I’m going to automate your job.
”I laughed and naively dismissed him. “Good try. Try and automate my analysis and thought process.”
Obviously, I was wrong…
Not because he automated my job, but because the problems we were paid to solve are not unique. It’s only a matter of time before some smart Alec will capitalize on the huge opportunity and come with a system for the mass market, and sell the system to us.
With new planning and allocation systems, it seems that anything with numbers and logic can be systematically automated. Instead of having 10s of people working on an excel sheet, you can have a system, an IT guy to fix problems, and 1-2 people to input data and get results with a snap.
10 years ago, someone I followed shared his view on the world going ahead. There’s going to be more and more people in the world vying for less and less jobs.
He wrote a lengthy article to explain. I can’t recall who wrote it, but he explained it so well that the eerie outlook has been lurking in my mind for the longest time. He predicted some form of chaos, you know what high employment rates lead to.
Jobs are going to get tougher for us as we grow older (and more expensive).
And our poor kids, they better get adaptable with a world that’s gonna change faster than the world we used to know.
Companies are aiming for efficiencies, doing more with less. It’s not anyone’s fault, it’s just how business works. It’s the “right thing to do” when corporates are ensuring positive financial KPIs despite rising costs, in a competitive world, and still answerable to demanding shareholders.
So if the company buys a new million dollars system, you can bet that will help them save more than a million dollars in headcount… someday.
But hope is not lost. While we can’t always save the world, we can “selfishly” try and save ourselves.
If someone can tell me what my future is, and I’m convinced it’s gonna happen, I wanna find creative solutions to minimize the impact.
I’m not wasting time on Netflix while the Godzilla slowly walks towards my city. Don’t rest on the laurels. Be proactive.
If you are an employee working for others, my advice for you is to stay hungry in 2 ways. Within the company and “outside the company”.
Don’t see yourself as an employee working for someone else’s company. See yourself working for yourself in someone else’s company, like a contractor.
You will think and act differently. Now when you hit your 50s and the company wants you to go, I hope you know exactly which direction you are heading for.
You still have time…
Start thinking. Start working on your own unique creative solutions. Only then can you work with a peace of mind, knowing your Plan B is on standby.
Have a good day ahead, my Friend. 🙂