In these times of constant change, it is becoming increasingly necessary for us to keep up otherwise we risk getting left behind.
It is inevitable that the amount of change and the speed of change happening in the world will continue to increase.
If we don’t stay abreast of what is going on around us, we may continue to do things we had done previously, which may not be valid or relevant.
Eric Hoffer, author of The True Believer wrote, “In times of change learners inherit the earth; while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.”
If we reflect on what has happened just in the last decade, we have to accept that technology has completely changed how we communicate and what is possible through the medium of the internet.
Social media has revolutionised how we stay connected, smart devices has made us more accessible than ever, and software has skyrocketed the level of creativity and innovation today.
In my field of interest which is online technology, personal development, productivity and leadership, the biggest shift over the past decade and a half has been learning online.
We now have so many options to offer training courses and programs online, and have the appropriate tools to support it such as membership site software, webinar software, hangouts, video-based learning portals, electronic resources, etc.
If I don’t stay up to date with the shift that is happening, I know I will get left behind, hence the focus on building an online platform and brand.
With so much changing, it is now critical that we develop the appropriate skills to be able to manage change effectively. Here are five skills we now require not just to stay current, but also to be successful in the future.
1. A high level of self-discipline. I consider this to be one of the most, if not, the most important skill to have moving forward. Since we are exposed to so many distractions now, from online ads, push notifications on our devices, billboard ads, television ads or even the latest and greatest gadget, knowing what to pay attention to and what to filter out is critical. We should only give attention those things that will move us closer to what we want or where we want to go.
2. Strong ability to manage multiple priorities. We all wear many hats in life and that will not change any time soon. We have multiple personal and professional commitments. All these commitments dictate what our priorities are. The clearer we are on what is truly important to us, the easier we’ll be able to handle the demands that are placed on us, and also reject the things that will take us away from what we want.
3. Being able to network effectively. It is often said that our network determines our network. Knowing who to reach out to for support is vital if we want to shorten our learning curve and accomplish our goals faster. Being connected to different networks but more importantly, the right networks, can bring about new opportunities for advancement, growth and greater success. Therefore our ability to build relationships is a necessary skill to have.
4. Ability to conduct research efficiently. We live in a knowledge age where everything we do is centred around having the right information at the right time. Being able to choose exactly what we are looking for among all the conflicting or contradictory information available today is mandatory.
If we don’t develop the ability to get to the information we what quickly, we will end up wasting valuable time, possibly getting overwhelmed and stressed, and be in a state of confusion. Knowing how to get to the right information is imperative.
5. Being able to make informed and inspired decisions. With so much noise around us, the ability to quieten our mind and listen to our inner voice, the part of us that has true wisdom, is crucial. As we develop the ability to conduct research efficiently, being able to make decisions after all that research is what will help us take the right actions to get to where we want to go a lot easier.
While we live in such a wonderful time in the history of the world, these are examples of skills we must develop or strengthen if we are going to continue to be successful in the future.
If we don’t develop these skills, chances we are we’ll get left behind, and as Eric Hoffer said so many years ago, we’ll be left with the skills to deal with a world that no longer exits.
Action Step: Evaluate yourself on the five skills listed above. If you are not strong in any of them, create a plan to develop these skills. You may have to start with being able to conduct research efficiently in order to know how to develop these skills.
Question: What is another skill that is important to develop if we want to continue to be successful in the future?
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