There are plenty of changes happening in today’s workplace. We are using automated services more than ever before. Think pieces describe a future where artificial intelligence and self-driving cars will change the way people around the world work and play. These kinds of changes are exciting, but they are also massive disruptors for existing industries. If you don’t stay up to date on what is happening in your industry, you might end up on the wrong side of a new trend. Today, more than ever before, it is critically important to stay on top of what is happening in your industry and around you, so that you are prepared to react, no matter what the change might be.
Acknowledge That Changes Are Going To Happen
The worst thing that you could do is to be in denial about what kinds of changes are going to happen in your industry. If you hope that change is not going to affect you, you’re in a dangerous position. You likely won’t be able to react when you actually need to. Take Blockbuster. Blockbuster brushed off Netflix in the latter’s early days. Blockbuster’s thinking was that people wouldn’t move to the DVD mail-order model. Blockbuster paid for their inflexibility by going out of business. Now consider how Netflix has operated. They’ve prepared for future shifts in technology by widely adapting streaming and even making their own content. That’s a tale of two companies who took different forecasting paths.
Stay Educated And Seek Help When You Need It
There is no shame in asking for help. And if you aren’t totally up to date on what is going on in your industry, or if you think changes might be happening that you aren’t aware of, ask around. If you know changes are happening but aren’t sure how you should adapt, then do the same. There is someone out there who is willing to help. There are trade groups and other organizations that are built to help employees learn new skills.
Don’t Be Afraid To Adapt
Eventually, you are going to have to make changes to the way you work or learn new skills. And you can’t be afraid to adapt. The process won’t be easy, but you’ll need to be able to do it if you want to be able to meet the challenges of the new 21st century. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there to learn an new skill. Rather see yourself as a continuous learner.
If you stay aware of what is going on in your industry, you’ll have the knowledge that you need in order to make an informed decision about your future. After all, don’t you think truck drivers should be preparing for a world with self-driving cars? The changes in your industry might not be as severe, but they are most likely coming. Make sure that you are reading industry magazines and attending local industry events to get a feel of what the future holds. Accept that change is coming sooner or later, and get into the habit to responding to newness, challenges and change with a pro-active mindset and an “I can do it” attitude.
Regina Fasold is a seasoned Executive Coach and Leadership Expert. Her extensive professional background and her 10+ years of experience as a Global Executive Coach have allowed her to assist over 300 senior executives in corporations throughout the United States and in over 25 countries around the world.
* Man with a Book image credit goes to: Ben White.