Abhijit BhaduriGuest Author

Are You A Career 3.0 Person… Stuck in a Career 1.0 Job

By | Abhijit Bhaduri |Keynote speaker, Author and Columnist

Career 3.0 is about having multiple skills, with multiple proficiencies that generate multiple income streams. Have you ever wondered how some people can be happy doing just doing one thing? Then you just MAY be a Career 3.0 person stuck in a Career 1.0 job.


Career 1.0 is a three stage career. For the first 20 years you learn, then for the next forty you earn and for the next few decades you retireStability and predictability drive this career path. Career choices are limited to what has worked before. Career 1.0 is a steady set of steps to climb on a ladder. Lifetime employment is an integral part of this model. The employer takes care of the occasional skill-building necessary to stay employed.

No alt text provided for this image


The comedian Atul Khatri had a fairly successful IT business. Even though his business was doing well, he was getting weary of it. For a while, he even tried being a bartender before dabbling in standup comedy, even as he kept his day job. He describes it as “riding two horses” for a while before becoming a standup comedian. This is a great example of Career 2.0 <Listen to this>

Listen to another standup comedian, Papa CJ who did an MBA from Oxford, then joined a consulting firm, only to quit it and pursue a career as a standup comedian. In both cases it is a fork on the road where the person has to change horses. During the transition, the person has to learn about two ecosystems with very different norms.

Career 3.0 Multiple Skills; Multiple Employers; Constant Reinvention; Ambiguity; Adaptability

In Career 3.0, your pay check is split between many employers (read clients). You bring multiple skills to the marketplace. Your personal brand matters. So does your ecosystem. You have to constantly keep learning new skills and experimenting with different ideas. You have to have the mindset of a Venture Capitalist. Be prepared to invest in many skills and build a portfolio of offerings.

Why Career 3.0 is the future

Too many birthdays: Since 1900 the global average life expectancy has more than doubled and is now above 70 years. McKinsey calculated that the average lifespan of a S&P 500 company is less than 18 years. That means four employers and possibly four careers. Business models are getting disrupted by tech, consumer preferences, immigration laws etc. Education is no longer a guarantee of either employment or employability. The problem is birthdays! We are all celebrating too many of them.

Increased income levels of the middle class: Liberalisation combined with the telecom revolution made it possible for incomes to rise for the middle class. It allows for increased risk taking and entrepreneurship. India needs to add a MILLION jobs every month to cater to the young population. People will need to change the way they view jobs, careers and define success.

Preparing for Career 3.0

It means getting comfortable with ambiguity and constant change. It means being able to prepare for a career that lasts for seventy to eighty years. It means building financial cushions to invest in building proficiency in multiple areas. It means getting comfortable with failure and set backs. It means building an ecosystem that supports Career 3.0.

No alt text provided for this image

What if you are already employed, does this apply?

Career paths will be non linear. Give yourself an imaginary deadline of 90 days to build a skill you always wanted to. Don’t wait for the employer to pay for it and sponsor you to build skills. Be an apprenticeship to someone already in a Career 3.0 and figure out what you need to build. Become known as an expert in something. Teach people skills that you have. If you hate your job and find it extremely limiting, ask yourself if you are a Career 3.0 person trapped in a Career 1.0 job. If you find the structure and hierarchy and predictability of the corporate job unable to utilise your creativity, then ask if you are ready enough to join the Career 3.0 revolution. If you have multiple interests at the same time, then maybe Career 3.0 is for you. If you have always taught yourself the skills that made you an expert, you may be on to something.

I wrote about Career 3.0 three years back, almost to the date. Here is what I had written then <read that piece>. I wrote about it in my book Dreamers and Unicorns. And now I have decided to share it with you.

No alt text provided for this image

If this resonates with you, email me (abhijitbhaduri@live.com) and tell me your story. Share this with someone who will thank you for this.

Republished with permission and originally published at Abhijit Bhaduri’s LinkedIn

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button