A new year, a new you. So what’s in store for you in the workplace of 2023? Remember, things are a little different now. The modern work environment is constantly evolving and beyond the pandemic, it is being influenced by other factors like economic changes, technological developments, automation and globalization.
It’s time to broaden your career horizon. As the world around us is shifting at lightning speed and your only competitive advantage is to adapt faster. Every skill you acquire doubles your rate of success.
As you make a fresh start and head into 2023, here are six ways to rise to the occasion and adapt to the latest trends impacting the modern workplace.
1: Hybrid is the new normal
Two years after the pandemic, many people have now settled into hybrid or fully remote work arrangements. Mostly hybrid – a combination of virtual and in-person work is defining the workplaces of the future.
There are definite advantages of working hybrid – both for businesses and employees.
When implemented correctly, it offers a cost-saving benefit to companies as they can rent out office space on a need basis. It is efficient and speedy helping employees work more without the challenges of travel time etc. And thanks to technology, companies can diversify the workforce by hiring from different countries.
People with the ability to work remotely are definitely anticipating more hybrid work arrangements. Plus, the development of advanced communication software makes it easy to operate from any corner of the world and join virtual meetings anywhere.
Of course, positions that did not go remote during the pandemic will still remain on site.
In 2023, you can expect more of workplace flexibility and with that, enhanced mobility for opportunity and growth.
Our top tip:
You don’t need to be a tech wizard but it helps to know the basics of how to troubleshoot minor tech issues if you run into Wi-Fi or computer issues. It’s a good idea to invest in good speakers, a web camera, a backup portable hotspot, extra laptop battery and such.
2: Soft skills are the new hard reality
The jobs of 2023 and beyond, will demand both analytical and social skills. Traditionally, our school systems had always focused on hard skills. But as automation continues to transform the workforce, the demand for soft skills is also rising significantly. And even the most sophisticated AI can’t replicate most soft skills.
Thus, people with a good combination of hard skills and strong skills of emotional intelligence will be highly valued gold in the coming times. Critical thinking and problem-solving have always been at the top of soft skills. And now, enhanced communication, teamwork, problem-solving, emotional intelligence and other primary soft skills are gaining prominence. Many employers and hiring managers recruiting professionals agree that soft skills will be crucial to recruiting and HR in the coming months.
Our top tip:
Life never stops teaching, so be open to feedback. Be proactive and grab every opportunity to volunteer. The more you step out, offer to help the team and interact with others, the more you get to communicate and sharpen your skills.
3: The gig economy gains ground
An enhanced dependence on technology, new innovations and a future with digitally-enabled work options awaits us in 2023. Two years after the pandemic, independent work is quickly evolving thanks to the vast support it gets from digital technologies. As a result, it fuelled the rise of remote working, alternative work setups and the gig economy.
For companies, easy access to both full-time and gig workers helps them adapt to economic instability and boost their teams when they need to. Thanks to the rise of technology, the typical workforce of the past is also undergoing changes. The same thing is making work more flexible and bringing people together, even if they’re located in different time zones and even continents. This has precisely enabled the rise and the rise of the gig economy.
Today, people no longer have to rely on the traditional 9 to 5 work model. Instead, they can look forward to an innovative work life and embrace the gig economy. Today, this not only includes Uber drivers and Airbnb hosts, but also freelancers in every industry, independent contractors, temporary staff, on-call staff and consultants.
New technologies like collaboration apps and benefits to employers like cheaper overhead and limited liabilities also contribute to this trend. Digital freelance marketplaces like Upwork, Fiverr and others are also contributing to the fast growth of independent work.
Our top tip:
Create and maintain a routine just like you would do at a regular 9 to 5 job. Ramp up your social contacts and extend your support network of clients and other gig professionals.
Constantly set new goals, add new clients and keep climbing just like you would do at a job.
4: Technology skills are now required in every job
In the last two years, technological advancements have transformed the very fabric of work and the global economy. Today, the impact of digital evolution continues to permeate nearly all businesses. And this means, significant changes in a broad range of jobs even those that need low skill levels by comparison.
From finance managers to executive assistants to utility workers, everyone is now required to know some computer apps to perform their jobs. Of course, you may not know how to code or use AI but virtually almost everyone needs to know about the MS suite products like Word and Excel. Almost every firm in the corporate world is driven by data and more so for those relying on the gig economy. Now is a good time to learn data analytics, coding and other such essential skills.
Our top tip:
Dedicate time each week to boost your knowledge of digital marketing tools like Content Creation, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Social Media Management(SMM) etc. You can also refer to platforms like Coursera and FutureLearn to brush up your knowledge of data sciences and data analytics.
5: Enter the Zoomers
Gen Z, also known as Zoomers refers to those born between 1997 and 2010. While they have been marking their entry for a few years now, they will continue to enter the workforce in more numbers in 2023 and beyond. And organizations that welcome Zoomers for the first time, are learning to adjust to their expectations. This means, what worked with the Boomers, Millennials and Gen Xers may not work with the Zoomers.
Now that every business has a strong presence on various social media, Zoomers will be employed to leverage Social Media Marketing (SMM) through an array of social media platforms to engage with customers, build their brands, increase sales, and drive traffic to their website. Zoomers are also digital natives who like to work in a workplace where they can be equal contributors and active change agents, in an atmosphere of collaboration and mutual respect.
Our top tip:
Zoomers are highly responsive, sociable and prefer transparency and frequent feedback. If you are one of them or work with them, it’s important to inculcate a culture of clear and effective communications, a sense of community and opportunities to collaborate and grow.
6: Upskill and reskill constantly
Upskilling simply means improving your existing skills to upgrade your career. Upskilling and reskilling play a vital role in growth and are important for you to stay competitive in the industry.
Today, companies are directing their focus to allocate funds for dedicated employee training to add value through upskilling. If you are fortunate to have your organization help you, definitely go for upskilling. At the same time, learning new skills on your own is also recommended. What’s more, today, you also learn anything in a budget-friendly, cost-effective, and convenient manner, depending on your resources and the time on hand.
Remember, upskilling is an investment in yourself, not an expense. At every level, you need to upskill as job responsibilities that require these skills are gradually increasing. In addition to investing in specialized training, your upskilling initiatives may include taking on new assignments, attending workshops and conferences, working with a mentor and more.
Our top tip:
First, identify the areas you need to upskill to stay competitive and ahead in your area of expertise. You can then consider many venues including Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Anyone can enroll for these free and flexible online platforms, learn new skills and advance their careers.