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Could These 4 Skills Future-Proof Your Career?

Source | LinkedIn : By Bernard Marr

Could your job be done by a robot?

It’s a serious question. As big data, machine learning, AI and other technologies continue to advance at a furious pace, more and more jobs are falling into the category of those that could be automated and done by a computer or a robot.

Factory workers, assembling the same widget over and over again, used to be the only ones who had to worry about robots taking over their jobs, but no longer. Drivers, waiters, cashiers, customer service representatives, and a whole host of other professions are suddenly on the cusp of being at risk. Even some high-paying professional jobs, like diagnosticians and lawyers may find some or all of their jobs being outsourced.

In which case, the question becomes: which jobs are safe?

Oxford has estimated that as many as 35 percent of U.K. jobs are at risk from automation in the next 25 years. So what career path should you take if you want to be safe? They tend to fall into a few categories:

Creativity and skill

Actors, artists, professional athletes, musicians and the like should be very safe from automation.

At this point, it’s nearly impossible for a computer to replicate creativity. A computer could create a painting or a poem, using other paintings or poems as a guide, but that’s not true creativity. Likewise, very few people are going to be interested in watching a robot play football or race a bike in the Tour de France; the joy of sports is watching thehumans compete.

But even if you’re not a fine artist or athlete, any job that requires a high degree of creativity or skill will be safe. This includes writers, graphic designers, scientists, archeologists, coaches, photographers, architects, trial lawyers, physicians and surgeons and others.


Another thing computers are just not good at (yet) is empathy. Any job that requires a lot of human interaction and empathy is unlikely to be automated any time soon. Even though AI is proving that computers can take over simple interactions, like answering basic customer service questions or routing phone calls correctly, the likelihood that professions like therapists, which require a great deal of human interaction and empathy, will be automated is slim.

Jobs in this category might include veterinarians, counselors, nurses, dentists, fitness trainers, firefighters and police officers (which also require specialized skills), nutritionists, child care, clergy, teachers, and so on.

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