Critical Skills Include Continuing Education
Has Your Job Description Changed Over the Years?
For most jobs there is a continuing evolution process and it is critical that the person in that position stay current in their job knowledge and education. How do you know if your job is changing? Here are some warning signals to monitor.
Have you been asked to take on new assignments and roles?
Are new hires required to have skills that you do not possess?
What skills do the job postings from other companies expect for someone in your position?
Do you pay attention to what is happening in your career?
Are you in a field or position that is constantly changing and updating?
Do you receive frequent mailings (snail mail and email) about seminars and conferences pertaining to your job?
What is happening with your friends that have the same role in other companies?
Are you receiving warning signs that your job may be in jeopardy?
Are there things going on in the company that are out of the ordinary?
Do you feel obsolete or ignored at work?
These are all warning signs that you should be monitoring and questions you should be asking. If you are not taking these precautions; you may come to work one day and get an unexpected surprise.
Have You Been Asked To Take On New Assignments and Roles?
Role and assignment changes are key indicators of new expectations. When you receive “out of the ordinary” requests; do not question the assignment. But do ensure that you understand what is required so you can provide the proper information.
Are New Hires Required To Have Skills That You Do Not Possess?
If new hires are expected to have new or additional skills that you do not possess, this is a key warning signal that the job is changing. You must get busy immediately finding out what is involved and take the appropriate steps to upgrade your skills and abilities.
What Skills Do the Job Postings From Other Companies Expect for Someone in Your Position?
Skill sets listed in job postings are a great indicator of the trends for your job. Are you paying attention to what employers are requesting and expecting? If you are looking to advance or continue to be marketable; it is critical that you possess the required skill set.
Do You Pay Attention to What Is Happening in Your Career?
Are you monitoring articles, blog posts, vendor announcements, and other career information? If you are not, you are missing important signs of the latest trends. You must be spending time staying current. Use Google alerts to get notified on recent published articles relevant to you.
Are You in a Field or Position That Is Constantly Changing and Updating?
Some positions have constant information turnover and you must be proactive to stay current. In the technology arena the turnover rate is every 12 to 18 months. That means that anyone new coming in can have a “current” understanding of the latest technology in that period of time.
Because those that are currently in these roles must be constantly educating themselves in 12 to 18 months you are equal on the latest information. The advantage of the person that has been there longer is the history and understanding of the business.
The historical and business knowledge will keep your job for some period of time, but eventually you will become obsolete. You must continually educate yourself on the technology changes. Most organizations do a poor job of keeping employees current, so it is up to you to invest in yourself!
Do You Receive Frequent Mailings About Seminars and Conferences Pertaining To Your Job?
If you are constantly being contacted about training, seminar, conferences, and other educational opportunities; this is a clear sign that your job is changing. Pay attention and one way or another get the new knowledge.
What Is Happening With Your Friends That Have the Same Role in Other Companies?
Do you talk to friends and acquaintances in other companies that have similar positions? If not, you should! You need to learn what they are experiencing, what they are being asked to do, and what they are investigating on their own.
How does their list compare to yours? You can gain great insight into YOUR future by paying attention to what others are doing and being asked to do.
Are You Receiving Warning Signs That Your Job May Be in Jeopardy?
You must be paying attention to the subtle and sometimes not so subtle warning signs at work regarding your job. The obvious ones include being passed over for promotions and raises.
There are others that are more subtle such as not being included in some meetings, not receiving new or choice projects, or not being asked about your opinion on topics where you were included previously. Are you paying attention? Do not let yourself be blindsided.
If you are worried about losing your job, education is even more critical. Regardless of the reason for the potential change, you must be prepared for your next opportunity and education is key to that process. This is regardless of whether the next opportunity is in the same or a different field.
Are There Things Going On in the Company That Are Out of the Ordinary?
Have you noticed anything unusual or strange happening within your company? Are there an unusual number of meetings, especially “closed door” occurring? Are there frequent visitors that you have not seen previously wandering around? Are there an unusual number of introductions or types of introductions happening?
These can all be signs of business problems or changes. They may not be anything to be alarmed about, but you should always take note.
Do You Feel Obsolete?
If you feel obsolete, you probably are. What are you going to do about it? Will you wait for the other shoe to drop or will you take action NOW! It is up to you.