The fourth Industrial Revolution is already here and most of us are swimming in oceans of information. There is so much of it all on our multiple devices. Data is literally the driving decision making, and ability to make decisions. Data is what is driving super powers, companies, conglomerates and even rockets which might help settle the next generation in Mars. We are truly living in the age of Zettabyte.
A few decades ago, all this was unimaginable. While growing up, I was in awe of my mother typing on a typewriter at office in the 80s and 90s. Then came the computers, and she adapted extremely well. We also were taught computers in school and typing on keyboards was a bit of a task. Thankfully, I could access some computers in library and practice going online. The network used to be slow, but it was making connection. We soon progressed to Mobile phones and I got my hands on a Nokia 3310 by 2003 and as of today, almost all of us carry super computers in our hands.
However, this is post is not about my experience, rather, an interesting book I read a couple of years back and worth recommending to communicators. “The Industries of the Future” by Alec Ross is a good read when it comes to working in the age of Internet of Things. Also some of the predictions made are coming true as well.
- Opportunities – Start-ups, Gig economy, co-working spaces are words most of us are now familiar with by now. What is interesting is most employees who are joining the workforce are more attuned to such jobs. If I wanted my son to compete in such a space, he should be right skilled in somethings which separates him well from not just the crowd of people, but robots as well. The book advises parents to open the world wide for them to experience. Technology deprivation might have worked for our generation, but this generation needs it as an enabler.
- Skill upgradation – One of the key skills humans have are motor skills. Add linguistics to the bucket as well. If you, as an individual are learning soft skills, coding and related languages should also be an added asset. This can be a Python, Dart or a Rust. This is not meant to make you a programmer or a software engineer, but a working knowledge will always help navigate around peers.
- Money – Although bitcoin and related currencies are currently a trend which lost steam, the author is betting big on online currencies and privatised payment banks. Apple for example has also got into payments through Apple pay and so has Google. Their aim is to provide a unified solution which is in your mobile. The wallet is slowly and surely becoming a thing of the past.
There are examples around Cybersecurity, Smart Cities, Women in leadership and how digital economies are not just propelling the developed and developing parts of the world but also parts of Africa which have populations moving out of poverty and adapting it well in commerce.
These are aspects which make me happy.
Apart from a book recommendation, you would then ask, where does the communicator fit in all of this? Well, I see most companies and corporates are already subscribing to monitoring tools which work well in terms of giving comprehensive information on what is happening around the business. Social listening tools are now being used effectively to give management sound advise around their social posts as well as give sound recommendation. Is there more? Definitely.