Worried An AI Is Going To Take Your Job? Here’s How To Stay Relevant In The Generative AI Era
6 mins read

Worried An AI Is Going To Take Your Job? Here’s How To Stay Relevant In The Generative AI Era

Worried An AI Is Going To Take Your Job? Here’s How To Stay Relevant In The Generative AI Era

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Analysis by the International Monetary Fund found that almost 40 percent of all global employment may be affected by AI, and in advanced economies, the figure could be as high as 60 percent. But don’t be alarmed. That doesn’t mean 40 to 60 percent of jobs will disappear altogether. Instead, it means that AI automation is likely to take away, streamline or enhance some of the tasks associated with those jobs. For the most part, then, we’re talking about the augmentation of human jobs. We’re talking about humans working alongside AI tools, not being replaced by them.

But still, with the many headlines about the transformative nature of generative AI, it’s no wonder people are concerned about their jobs or just concerned about being left behind by this rapidly advancing technology. In this article, we’ll explore my top tips for staying relevant in the age of generative AI.

Educate Yourself

My first tip is to get to grips with generative AI. Learn what it can do. Have a play with tools like ChatGPT to see what they’re capable of. (If your employer doesn’t allow the use of ChatGPT and other tools at work, use it in your free time.) Experiment. Have fun with it. It’s also really important to grasp that generative AI is much bigger than ChatGPT and that generative AI tools can do more than simply generate text. Generative AI can be used to create audio, voices, music, images, and video. It can analyze data and extract insights. And it can write computer code.

I strongly recommend you go on a learning journey. There are tons of free (and paid) courses out there that cover the whole gamut of generative AI education – from beginner and general courses to specific courses related to specific industries. There are also tech podcasts and YouTube channels that can help you get up to speed.

Assess The Potential Impact On Your Job

Once you have a good idea of what generative AI can do, compare that to your job. How might the work you do change because of generative AI? Some jobs are more exposed than others. But for most jobs, it’s unlikely that generative AI will replace your job altogether. However, it can probably take on some of your daily tasks. In other words, generative AI (probably) won’t take your job away, but it will very likely change how you work.

I suggest you break your job down into its component tasks and core skills. Which of those component skills and tasks can be done by generative AI, now or in the near future? Which tasks will continue to require the human touch?

If your job is highly exposed to the risk of AI automation, will you potentially be looking for a new job in the next couple of years? If so, what kind of work would you like to move into, and how can you start preparing for that transition now?

Even if your exposure is moderate or low, you might still want to augment your work with generative AI. Can you, for example, adapt your job so that mundane, easily repeatable tasks are done by generative AI – thereby freeing up your time for more complex tasks? Which brings us to…

Position Yourself As Someone Who Can Harness Generative AI In Your Work

Speaking at the 2023 World Economic Forum’s Growth Summit, economist Richard Baldwin said, “AI won’t take your job. It’s somebody using AI that will take your job.” This means that if you don’t know how to work with AI, you’re in a much riskier position – certainly compared to someone who embraces AI and knows how to use it to do their job more effectively.

So, consider how you could start integrating generative AI into your everyday work. Can you use it to draft an email, for example? (Note that I said “draft” – you should always carefully review any content created by AI.) Can you use it as a productivity tool? To brainstorm ideas? To summarize a lengthy report into a neat paragraph?

Grow Your Skills In More Human-Centric Areas

Knowing how to work effectively with AI is important. But it’s also important to position yourself in the organization in line with the things that AIs can’t do. For example, a generative AI tool can write decent marketing copy, but human creativity and strategic thinking are vital for planning a marketing strategy.

Basically, consider how you can take on more responsibilities in the areas where human skills are still needed and will always be needed. Areas like creativity, complex decision-making, strategic thinking, leadership, empathy, interpersonal relationships, and so on. These are the areas where humans will continue to have the edge over machines. These are the skills that I’d advise anyone to cultivate for future workplace success.

And Above All, Learn To Embrace Change

I get it; change is uncomfortable. But today’s workplaces are grappling with rapid and near-constant change. So, if change is something you struggle with, now is a good time to address that.

Working on your adaptability and flexibility will help you cope with change more easily. So, how can you find ways to boost your adaptability and flexibility? Try learning a new skill, for example, or finding small ways to step beyond your comfort zone. Volunteer for different projects at work. Or find ways to flex your creative muscles (because flexible thinking and creativity go hand in hand).

Most importantly, remember that generative AI (probably) won’t take your job. But it could make work better.