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Staying Relevant as Artificial Intelligence Continues to Advance

A look at how jobs are changing with the advancement of artificial intelligence....
Staying Relevant as Artificial Intelligence Continues to Advance
Written by Brian Wallace
  • What to do when the machines take over

    This is 2020. When last did you write a letter and send it in the mail to someone two countries away?

    A great percentage of jobs that are supposed to be handled extensively by humans are being done by computers and electronic devices now. It’s called “automation” but for many job sectors, it’s a nightmare that millions of workers have to live through. It’s one of the biggest and most terrifying disadvantages of technology – human displacement. Alongside reducing human interaction and physical connection, people are rapidly losing their jobs and relevance in the global workforce to Artificial Intelligence. It’s a scary reality for many professions and it’s only a matter of time before several human-handled jobs become entirely obsolete.

    The main objective of Artificial Intelligence is to create efficient problem-solving systems with unrestrained versatility. As machines are being progressively programmed to be self-learning, self-reasoning, and self-correcting, there’s literally nothing they cannot achieve in due time. Presently, several categories of human jobs are rapidly being taken over by AI. A few of them are discussed below:

    Retail workers: It’s no wonder why 33% of Canadians have refused to use self-checkout. Hundreds of thousands of retail workers around the world are at risk of being replaced by automated machines that serve customers directly with zero human intervention.

    Book-keeping clerks: It’s been a long time since anyone ever heard of book-keepers. With technologies like Microsoft Office, Quickbooks and other incredible software, this job has become almost fully obsolete.

    Receptionists: With fully networked and sophisticated call managing systems taking over, it’s only a matter of time before companies scratch the need for a human face at the reception area.

    Courier services: While they are not in immediate threat, the near future sees automated drones delivering and self-driving delivery trucks doing the jobs of courier service workers and truck drivers.

    Advertising salespersons: With the rise of 3D animation and sophisticated cartooning, most industries are gearing toward marketing their products with these soft characters rather than humans.

    From factory workers and lift operators to bowling alley pinsetters and security guards, countless jobs are at massive automation risk and everyone must get in line with the “new normal” to stay relevant.

    Next-generation survival –diversifying your skills

    According to Michael Peres, a renowned serial-entrepreneur, leading journalist, and software engineer adjusting skills and aligning one’s interests with artificial intelligence is the only way to carve out a solid niche in the future. The 30-year-old Canadian is the creator of the Breaking 9 to 5 work model, a limit-exclusive concept that promotes the adoption of careers that are not restricted by time or confined to particular locations. “Breaking 9-5” does not necessarily recommend that you must quit your regular day job. However, there are no limits to what you can do with your time and life. It promotes a culture where you can work a 9-5 from the seat of a plane en-route a tour trip while taking orders on your merch website or providing services as a freelancer.

    Mikey Peres believes in worthy sacrifices for a better future where people are not afraid to adapt and blend in with the more forceful trends. He believes there are three essential steps to remaining relevant in the next generation as AI takes over:

    Find ways to be creative, unique, and provide values that are hard to replicate: You must come up with something that would be difficult or impracticable for a computer to replace. Find a service or a product that is unique to a particular parameter that cannot easily be industrialized or “snatched away”.

    Develop a diverse set of skills to quickly adapt to an ever-changing environment: There’s no way to survive with analog skills in a computerized world. You must be digitally equipped to thrive and grow in a world where virtually everything is being done by and on computers. Learn about AI, and choose a digital skill that works in collaboration with AI, such as web development, animation, graphic design, digital journalism, digital marketing, and so many more.

    Develop skills that don’t have constraints like time and location: There should be no “chains on your feet” and 24 hours each day should seamlessly run into one another (be sure to get enough sleep, though). Essentially, build a flexible career that does not limit you to a certain location year-round or give you restricting work hours. Do you. Let the world adjust.

    Another forward-thinking next-generation personality that has massively tapped into the AI treasure trove is Elon Musk – of course. The 49-year-old tech billionaire, business magnate, and industrial engineer foresaw a future where machines have a greater percentage of the workforce space than humans. He capitalized on it and while building SpaceX, his aerospace company, Musk became one of the earliest investors and now the CEO of Tesla, the world’s pioneer for renewable energy and self-driving vehicles.

    Despite being one of the global pioneers of the concept, Musk has often described Artificial Intelligence as “dangerous” and a global threat to human survival.  

    Musk advises about coping with the force of AI: “It’s very important that we have the advent of AI in a good way that is something that if you could look into a crystal ball and see the future, you would like that outcome because it is something that could go wrong and as we’ve talked about many times. And so we really need to make sure it goes right.”

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