Like the little black dress and the tan khakis with a blue button-down shirt, careers in technology never go out of style. They change all the time, but tech careers continue to expand needing bright, capable, well-trained professionals to fill the need. Better still, tech continues to become part of just about every career. Here’s how to prepare.
Will you succeed tomorrow? Do you have the skills required to continue to be a valuable and valued employee to your company? If not, how marketable are you elsewhere?
If you’ve never thought of these questions, you probably own your own company and employ others to work for you. Otherwise, these are questions you should be asking yourself constantly.
There was a time when one of the most sought-after skills was great penmanship. Back then, books were written by hand. Someone who could write them clearly and beautifully was a key asset to those who wished to provide books to others. Then Gutenberg invented the printing press.
There was a time when anyone who worked in an office needed to know how to type a letter, fold it, and mail it via the post office. Then came email.
There was a time when a working writer had to visit the public library to do much of their research, which could take hours. Now it takes a few seconds to Google what you need to know.
What Do All of These Advances Have in Common?
Each of these marks a point where previously desirable skills became useless because of an advance in technology. The printing press was as much of a revelation in 1440 as the World Wide Web was in 2005. And it changed the world even more.
Postal mail has been on the decline since the introduction of email.
Yes, I googled the year the printing press was invented.
This simply demonstrates the importance of having a firm grounding in technology. Yes, there are still over a quarter million tech jobs unfilled in the US marketplace according to Forbes magazine, but that’s really just the tip of this iceberg.
Every job in every kind of company requires some kind of interaction with technology. It’s just about unavoidable. No, you don’t have to be an engineer prepared to rip open equipment and fix it. You need to know how to use common technology tools like word processing, spreadsheets, a browser, email. You need a fundamental understanding of how the internet and all networks work.