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"For all that has been, thanks

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Leadership Notes -- Thoughts on Leading People and Making a Difference in Organizations

Word count this issue: 389

Estimated reading time:  3:15 minutes

 

Happy New Year!

 

One of the joys of my New Year’s is reading through the Economist magazine’s annual “The World in...” issue. This year’s “The World in 2017” was no slouch.  I find the magazine intelligent, well researched and as objective as can be in this strange time. 

 

One of the many pieces that stuck out for me is by Deputy Editor Tom Standage (and as it is a subscription, I cannot share a link, but you can find commentary on line).  The article, called “Apply Within” explores the jobs of the future using US Department of Labour numbers. The largest expected growth job in the next decade is forecasted “Wind Turbine Technician” followed by Occupational then Physical Therapy Assistants. Deacons, Priests and Bishops were conspicuous by their absence.

 

The article ends with a story about Standage’s 16 year old daughter. “Inspired by Isaac Asimov’s classic robot stories, my 16-year-old daughter wants to be a robopsychologist—a trouble-shooter who figures out why robots are misbehaving. “That job doesn’t exist,” complained her school’s career adviser. “True,” my daughter replied, “but it probably will in 2025.”

 

I think she is right; a fundamental challenge for us is that the economy is changing. Many of us, and our children and grandchildren will be working in jobs we have not even imagined yet in the coming decades. 

 

 

As leaders at this time, I believe we have a moral obligation to be clear with ourselves and the people with whom we work; the economy is changing, the jobs are changing, and so we must change. No heroes, political or otherwise, can change the fact that technology is changing our economies. The best responses in the midst of these changes will not come from such fantasy heroes (regardless of what they might think). The best responses will come from within ourselves, individually and collectively, as we grow in self-awareness, connectivity with each other, courageous perseverance, learning and disruptive spirituality. Each and every one of us is a gift to each other, and together we can imagine and co-create a better world for ourselves, our children and grandchildren. It will begin with us.