Pick any 10 people and ask them how much they think our lives will change in the next 10 years.
If you do this, you will no doubt hear a tonne of ideas, concepts, visions & evolutions that could radically change how we perceive the world. To see proof of this, you only need to look back at the last ten years and see how radically our day to day world has changed.
Things like AirBNB, Uber, Spotify, Google Chrome, Oculus, Kickstarter, Netflix and Android have become so integral in our day to day lives that it's hard to remember how things operated before. It's a sign of fantastic design and an overwhelming desire for change.
There has never been a period in time, when so much, so quickly has had such an enormous change in human behaviour. So what is next, and if all this change seems too much, what's staying the same?
The world of Cryptocurrency has become a global phenomenon and a subject that crosses the employment matrix, from students, builders, bankers & technology giants. We are all looking to see how we can reap the rewards.
It's fair to say, that the next ten years could bring about some fairly radical shifts in digital currency, that could impact traditional currency where it hurts most, in our pockets.
"In 2016, you‘ll have a hard time finding a major bank, a big accounting firm, a prominent software company or a government that did not research cryptocurrencies, publish a paper about it or start a so-called blockchain-project." https://blockgeeks.com/guides/what-is-cryptocurrency/
In a world that revolves around money, one constant stands proudly above. For a business, time is often more valuable than money, for an artist, it could be fame or notoriety, for a parent it could be love. It's fair to say that value, is the metric on which we measure our success, our happiness and well anything really. You can change currency all you wish, our relationship with value is here to stay.
Never loose sight of what you value the most, and in your career seek value in yourself and those around you.
Change: AI (Artificial Intelligence)
Artificial super intelligence may be the crème de la crème of Hollywood sci-fi movies, with robots finally reaching levels of human intelligence and taking over world (Cue Arnold Schwarzenegger). The fact of the matter is, whether this is even a possibility or not, AI is already making a massive impact on our daily lives.
It is practically impossible to visit a friend these days, without them trying to show off by saying "Hey Alexa, play Beyonce" (other genres of music are available). It's is so readily available, so simple to set up and overwhelmingly welcomed in our homes, unlike the abundance of chat bots that plague our social media channels and online help chats.
With every year that passes, AI will grow and adapt. It is a dead cert to continue and Hollywood will pat itself on the back for creating the documentary Terminator. So strap yourself in and enjoy the ride.
Same: Human Relationships
Let's face it, we're human and as much as some of us may enjoy the concept being at one with technology, at the end of the day we love being human. You can argue this point all you like, but people do people. We design our tech to mimic us, we (in theory) speed up our processes to give us more time to be human, which we fail at.
In business, a handshake and a face to face is still far more powerful than any other form of communication.
It’s clear to see that as a species we have evolved to welcome technology into our DNA, and at times it can be hard to distinguish between reality and pretend humanity. However on the inside, everything that has changed has simply altered the rules in which we make human connections. Our need to connect, is a strong as ever and is in no way ready to change.
We are still a social group, we thrive in communities, it's just that our communities are now much larger.
Change: Gig Economy/ Companies as Communities
We can still hear the voices of our parents saying, study, go to university, work for a big company, work your way up then retire in style. The fact of the matter is though, this is simply not how the world works now. If you are yet to hear about the gig economy, then don't worry it's coming your way.
"A gig economy is an environment in which temporary positions are common and organisations contract with independent workers for short-term engagements." https://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/gig-economy
The rise of digital in business and mass mobility means nearly anyone can work anywhere at anytime. So there's no longer a need to be held to the same job and location for life. It's the job equivalent of a rock band on tour. You follow the fans, rock the house, then move on to the next gig. Yeah sure, stability can be an issue but for some, the lifestyle is worth it and we are seeing increasing numbers of younger generations joining the gig economy. This could be the slow demise of the job for life mentality.
Being an Entrepreneur, is the new Footballer/Actor/Musician, with even the most famous of celebrities themselves becoming high profile business owners. It has become cool to work an 80 hour week, and struggle your way to success, free yourself from the shackles of a larger oppressive organisation and film it all for the world to witness. A bit dramatic yes, but hey it's entrepreneurship.
Running a business is nothing new. Britain is actually a nation of small business owners, however there has never been a time when such a symbol of street credibility has been assigned to being an Entrepreneur.
"In 2017 76% of businesses did not employ anyone aside from the owner(s)." https://www.fsb.org.uk/media-centre/small-business-statistics
So as companies shift to more flexible working and office premises become a thing of the past, the rise of the Entrepreneur will continue.
Change: Personal Data
In a world designed to maximise your use of time, a products' understanding of you means big money. More often than not, we willingly hand over our most intimate of details (no longer body sizes), but the very fabric of our consciousness, our DNA, and our what makes us' us!
Think of the absolute atrocity of using a pin code to log into your phone, it just takes so SO long. So we readily and willingly hand over our fingerprints to speed up the process. 'Alexa' listens to every word we have to say, google tracks our geographical movements as well as our digital ones, and then we get surprised when Apple advertises a product to us for a shop that you walked past a few days earlier thinking about the new iPhone.
It's all fine when we feel we are getting the better deal, like better security and increased speed.
Computers are smart and getting smarter, it is estimated that there will be 642,000 CCTV cameras in London alone by 2020. So I'm afraid to say that you are being tracked whether you like it or not, and this will only increase with time. Sorry.
Same: Fear around the use of personal data
If the beginning of 2018 has taught us anything, it's that we are beginning to fight back. In the grand scale of things, it is somewhat futile, however we will take the win when we can. Thanks to GDPR & Cambridge Analytica/Facebook Personal Data miss-use has been thrown into the public spotlight and we are not happy.
The fact of the matter is, deep down we don't like giving up our data. We enjoy the privacy, and the thought that if needed we could drop off the grid. Everyday, we are now thinking about how our data is being used which can only be a good thing. Knowledge is power on both sides.
There is no stopping Data Analytics as a subject matter, but we are making strides to stay somewhat in control, where we can. Even if that means deleting our Facebook accounts, we will take the small win.
Whether it is online schools, night schools, training academies, seminars, programmes, events, Youtube, webinars... The list goes on. Education is booming. We are living in the age of information, with so much knowledge at your finger tips. It has never been so easy for you to acquire the skills needed to accomplish your dreams.
Video is everywhere, with subject matter experts volunteering there wisdom to the masses. If you need to know something, then the answer is there for you to take.
Education has extended out passed the traditional ages of 5 – 22 years old. We are learning for life, returning to education years further down the road. Following our dreams after retirement. The boundaries have shifted and anything seems possible.
Our children are watching channels on Youtube, understanding that by being yourself and posting content you can have a very successful career. We are jumping back to Entrepreneurship here, but the power and knowledge to succeed is open to nearly everyone on the planet. With barriers falling every single day.
It's fair to say that it's a massively exciting time to be alive! If you are willing to look for the knowledge, then your dreams are within reaching distance.
We feel bad now, as we have just talked about how great education is, however there are simply elements that are just refusing to change. The tradition educational methods such as primary schools, high schools and others are still following the same old approach that they always have (granted there are a few exceptions).
You are told to read this information, remember this information, recall this information, pass the test. This mentality has worked (so we are told) for many years and it see's no sign of slowing down in mainstream education.
We simply cannot keep up with the rate of change in which our world is moving. We recognise the change, we understand it, create a solution to train for it, campaign for inclusion in school syllabus, sample test in schools, review, roll out by which time everything has changed again. You only have to look at the ever changing grading systems to see evidence of this.
Our education system continues to fail the students that do not learn best in conventional means, and please do not get us started about the exclusion of the creative subjects in schools. Without creativity, all progress stops!
No matter what changes in life, no matter the scientific discoveries that are made, mainstream education will always fall behind. Period!
If one thing is sure about the next ten years...
It’s that it is guaranteed to be as interesting as the last ten. The rate of change we are seeing is like nothing seen before. Nobody can truly predict the future, but we believe that by at least focusing your attention on what makes you' you, what makes you human, then you might just come out of the other side better than how you went in.