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The future of work: Predicting The 10 most important work skills of 2020

As technology advances and the world changes, the workforce has to change the way it moves forward. There are many drivers of change. Increased longevity, the rise of smart machines, new media and a world that is intrinsically connected have all led to a new kind of industrial revolution.

Related Infographic: The 10 Most Important Work Skills In 2020, via top10onlinecollges.org

In a recent Star Tribune Ask Matt article, a reader wondered the same thing, asking this question:

"I really like my job, but as technology advances I’m worried if I can keep up, if this career will be eliminated or how much it will change in the next 5, 10, 15 years. What advice do you have on planning for one’s career future in an uncertain workforce?"

That question was answered in an article titled In the future, will my job exist. But still, many questions exist.

While some fear that robots will take over industry and that computers will be able to take over the work of people, it's vital for industry workers to realize what their strengths are, as well as what strengths are going to stay or become valuable in the coming years. While, yes, a lot of people were laid off in the recession and replaced with automation technology, outsourcing and improved software, businesses are now looking to hire employees who can stand up to the changing industry climate.

In "The Start Up of You," Thomas Friedman says, "While many are hiring, they are increasingly picky. They're all looking for the same kind of people – people who not only have the critical thinking skills to do the value-adding jobs that technology can't, but also people who can invent, adapt and reinvent their jobs every day, in a market that changes faster than ever."

How do employees become the person that a company wants to hire? How do people adapt to global interdependence, new media and the introduction of smart machines? Workers have to learn things like social intelligence, they have to more deeply make sense of what people are expressing, they have to fine tune critical thinking and cross-cultural competency, as well as adapt to new media and virtual collaboration.

The infogrpahic titled The 10 Most Important Work Skills in 2020 explores the changes that workers are faced in industry, as well as what skills they needs to hone in order to be a major contender in the new job market.

Technolog is changing the landscape of work, be prepared to change with it to advance in your career.