As AI and automation continue to advance and become more widespread, concerns about job displacement are becoming more prevalent. What does the future of work look like? No one really knows, but one thing is certain: artificial intelligence will play a big part in our jobs, and the people who will stay relevant are those that use it effectively.
Goldman Sachs predicts 300 million jobs will be lost or degraded by artificial intelligence. According to the report, the most affected activities will be administrative and legal professions. Jobs in the information processing industries, like IT, are the most exposed because they’re related to ChatGPT’s capabilities.
There are steps individuals can take to prepare themselves and mitigate the risk of displacement.
I’ve been using generative AI tools for over a year. They are tools, not replacements. In its current stage, AI won’t’ replace you; a person using AI will. People who are using generative AI tools such as ChatGPT are undeniably more productive than people who aren’t.
For example, ChatGPT is great for writers because it can provide a starting point instead of starting with a blank page. People who use Dall-E and/or Midjourney are getting designs that have never been seen before, therefore avoid hiring a designer. Developers are also benefiting from generative AI tools, it allows them to work on bigger and more meaningful problems.
What can we do personally to stave off the displacement that may happen as a result of AI?
It’s no longer useful to debate whether AI tools are “smarter “or “better” than us. The tools are here and being widely used. But there are strategies you can use to generate your unique value. A recent article on HBR outlines 5 ways to future-proof your career in the age of AI.
The authors offer five strategies to future-proof your career in the age of artificial intelligence:
- Avoid predictability. It’s important to remember that AI isn’t generating new insights; it’s a prediction engine that merely guesses the most likely next word.
- Hone the skills that machines strive to emulate.
- Double down on “the real world.”
- Develop your personal brand.
- Develop recognized expertise in your field. Even if AI performs “first draft” functions, it must be double-checked by a trusted and reliable source. If that’s you, you’ll continue to be sought out because you have the authority to vet AI’s responses.
All great suggestions. Here are some additional ones:
- Stay informed, learn, and experiment with AI tools. Keep up to date with developments in AI and automation, like ChatGPT, and how they may impact your industry and job role. Understand how AI works by watching YouTube videos, following experts, and reading books related to AI. This will allow you to anticipate changes and adapt accordingly.
- Develop new skills. Identify the skills that are likely to be in demand in the future and focus on developing them. For example, ChatGPT is creating a new job; prompt engineer. So it’s important to become familiar with generative AI tools by using them. Also, learn and develop skills that AI can’t and won’t do, this may involve learning new technologies or improving soft skills such as communication and teamwork.
- Embrace lifelong learning. Make a commitment to ongoing learning and development throughout your career. This will allow you to adapt to changing job requirements and stay relevant in a rapidly evolving job market. Remember, the more you learn the more you earn.
- Be flexible. Be willing to take on new roles and responsibilities, and to work in different industries or sectors if necessary. This may involve retraining or upskilling, but it can also open up new opportunities and career paths.
- Cultivate creativity and innovation. While AI and automation may be able to perform routine tasks more efficiently, they cannot yet replicate human creativity and innovation. Cultivate these skills and use them to find new and innovative ways to add value to your organization.
Bottom line: The key to staving off displacement due to AI is to be proactive, adaptable, and willing to learn and grow throughout your career. By doing what machines can’t, for example, empathy and collaboration. By staying informed, learning, experimenting, developing new skills, and embracing lifelong learning, you can position yourself to thrive in an increasingly automated world.