“Today you have the chance to ask: What’s next? And to answer that in a way that creatively plays to your strengths. Of course, you can also stay in your comfort zone…
And pay the price of complacency.”
~ Chandell Labbozzetta
The Speed of Change
This has been an extraordinary year, but don’t let the drama of 2020 blind you to the radical changes that have been taking place all around us for several years and the possibilities they hold for the future.
A few months ago Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler published their latest book, “The Future is Faster Than You Think” in which they talk about the converging technologies that are transforming our world at an unimaginable speed. The book is worth reading if you are feeling complacent about where you are today and what you have already achieved.
Here are a few interesting facts to reflect on when it comes to the future:
- Almost all the companies profiled in the business school bible “In Search of Excellence” of the 1980s and 90s are no longer in existence.
- Since 2000, 52% of the Fortune 500 have either gone bankrupt, been acquired, or ceased to exist.
- Today, the world’s largest media company does not create any content; the world’s largest taxi company owns no cars; and the world’s most valuable retailer has no inventory.
If those facts don’t make you stop and wonder what’s possible for you, then they should.
Business, Career and Future Proofing in a World of Change
One of my Confident Conversion graduates has taken the idea of playing to her strengths and making her own rules to double her income in the past 6 months by focusing on the things she does well and delegating or dropping tasks she doesn’t enjoy.
Like Uber, Facebook, and Alibaba she stopped looking at what everyone else in her industry was doing and asked what was possible for her to accomplish and then shaped her own reality around those goals.
You may not want to be the ‘biggest’ anything and that’s fine… But if there’s one thing we’ve learned this year, it’s that addiction to comfort may be our biggest threat to survival so we need to rethink our approach to business and career and focus on:
- Learning new skills,
- Evaluating existing skills and modes of thought,
- Searching for new technologies and opportunities that are revolutionising your industry.
Complacency is always dangerous. Now it’s a death sentence
If you were brutally honest with yourself, why would anyone (employer or client) hire you?
If you don’t have a persuasive answer for that question, then you have some work to do.
It’s increasingly clear that most people are far less interested in your qualifications than in your network, motivation, experience, and skill-development potential. This is a completely appropriate response to the rapid pace of change.
The good news is that, in many fields, you can create opportunities for yourself through self-directed learning and by demonstrating your openness to new technologies and methodologies. A growth mindset (as described by Carol Dweck) is one of the biggest selling points because it demonstrates that you are open to evaluate (rather than mindlessly adopt) something new. When this is balanced by passion, proven diligence, deep thinking, and perseverance, then you become worthy of consideration.
Can YOU demonstrate those qualities?
And if not, what do you need to do and learn to be able to showcase your credibility so that you open doors to the future.
In my book, Confident Closing: Sales secrets that grew a business by 400% in six months and how they can work for you! I made the comment “We’re all in sales now whether we like it or not.” That sentence attracted a lot of negative feedback from people who think of sales as sleazy or pushy, but it’s really not a question of “Will you sell yourself?” But of “How will you sell yourself?”
Once you come to terms with that reality, you discover how important it is to work on your selling skills for the new era.
Making a Plan for the Next Stage
What is next for you both personally and professionally?
If you threw out all your existing blueprints, what would you love to do that would have value to others?
How could you do it in a way that was insanely profitable?
The end of the year is always a good time to re-evaluate your goals and dreams, and a disruptive year like we’ve just had is a particularly important time to do so.