Adaptable workers, prepared for quick changes and open to new ideas are core assets for business
The modern working environment is a multi-tier universe that changes in an extremely fast way. Modern technologies, as well as the growing role of the Internet, dictate new learning and working trends. Since business management depends on innovations, modern workers have to develop a view of the world completely different from their parents' attitudes. They need to master skills that are marketable and relevant in today's labor market. So, what workers' traits will be popular in the years ahead?
High social intelligence
Being an adaptable worker has always been a desirable characteristic. However, nowadays adaptability does not refer only to being able to learn fast and perform new tasks in an efficient way. What is also important today is to possess a high level of socially acceptable behavior. Just like any other intelligence, social intelligence can be both developed and boosted. You cannot become a manager today if you are not capable of managing your workers' social needs and relationships. Even ordinary employees are trained and taught how to deal with social issues within a company, so as to learn different ways of coping with socially stressful situations. To find out more about social intelligence and leadership, read an article by professors Daniel Goleman and Richard E. Boyatzis, published by Harvard Business Review.
Multifaceted approach to work
The times when a factory worker was expected only to screw nuts are behind us. The present and the future will require that employees develop and apply a multi-tier approach to their work tasks. For instance, today a doctor needs to know how to use a computer and analyze virtual data. Similarly, a bus driver is expected to use a navigation system. In the decades ahead, business owners and managers will seek workers who are excellent at multitasking. The more tasks are done by one worker, the more assets are saved for the company.
With the development of multinational companies, their employees and CEOs meet their colleagues from different parts of the world. They have to communicate and collaborate with them. Since the whole world is becoming a closely-knit community, it is clear that learning foreign languages is an extremely important precondition for better jobs. Accordingly, hiring people who speak foreign languages can yield better results for the whole company. Of course, running a business successfully is not all about languages, but they can make a significant contribution to the overall business efficiency. You can read an interesting piece on the ROI when it comes to learning foreign languages in The Economist.
Imagine a law office with a young twenty-something rookie and a sixty-something veteran. They both possess knowledge on legal matters. The older worker is probably even more skillful, due to their experience. However, in the business context of the modern world, the younger worker will be more competitive in many different aspects, thanks to his or her exposure to modern technologies. Using smartphones, tablets and laptops, together with the Internet information highways enables young workers to advance in an incredibly fast way. So, modern workers in all niches have to possess proficient Internet skills, as well as a high level of knowledge of software tools relevant for their area of work. Of course, knowing how to use Microsoft Office is also a must for every contemporary employee. In accordance with this statement, those who invest in Excel courses will learn how to deal with all kinds of reports and charts; such knowledge can make a big difference.
Adaptable workers, prepared for quick changes and open to new technologies make the core of the 21st century business world. Asking yourself where you are and self-assessing your skills will help you locate your soft spots. Only when you have made an objective estimate of your position will you be ready to move forward and master the skills required to compete in the modern business surroundings.