Writing a post on the future of business while in the midst of a pandemic may be considered an exercise in uselessness. Afterall who can know what the future holds?
We do know that businesses will continue to start, expand and succeed. We also know that businesses are critical to providing employment therefore they are not going anywhere in the foreseeable future.
We also know that many future businesses will have their foundations in technology – whether they are an actual tech biz, or be it they utilise technology to generate revenue, maintain costs and improve effectiveness. If you have an interest in technology and can understand its relationship to profitability then there will likely be a role for you.
We know that person-centered businesses and roles will continue to grow and provide employment, this includes education, healthcare, community services, sales, marketing and human resources. It can be expected however that these sectors will also be increasingly influenced and shaped by technology.
The key to future employment for everyone is continuous learning. There will be no exceptions if you wish to remain employed. While employers will provide core training, future employees should take responsibility for their own learning. The good news, assuming we see learning as bad news, is that today there are so many opportunities and channels for learning, many of them free or low cost. No longer are people confined to traditional learning channels.
It may appear logical in a technology driven world to focus education on STEM topics – its not a bad thing – however employees in future will increasingly be engaged in roles that require high cognitive skills and critical analysis. Those that succeed may be those that combine their understanding of STEM with the arts, humanities
Covid-19 has thrown a curve ball at many in the business sector. Businesses themselves will recover, and those that fall will be replaced by new ventures. Increasingly people are turning to a side business, or freelance gig, in addition to their regular employment. This is a sound strategy as it can provide an income buffer during challenging times.
Employees may not recover as quickly from the pandemic. We already know that some large businesses have indicated they may rehire less people than they have let go – at least in the short term. Small business operators may be wary of committing to full time employees during their rebuilding phase. Having said that, assuming a return to a healthy economy, it can be expected that both the big end of town and the small business sector will need to hire increasing numbers of people.
Many commentators suggest there will be a ‘new normal’ in the business sector. Granted we will be more conscious of social distancing and personal hygiene, more people may work remotely and we will live with smaller groups of people, however the fundamentals of operating a business will not change and people will continue to generate personal revenue in a mixture of ways.
I’m John Coxon. I work with CEO’s and management of nonprofit organisations to help them increase revenue, reduce costs and be more effective through application of my building blocks suite of assessment tools. I can be contacted by email.