Hot Jobs For The Future - Part 1

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By Inc

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How would you feel if the job you've been doing for most of your life just moved offshore without any warning?

What if you just spent several years getting an education for what you thought would be a very hot job but later turned out to be a very bad choice?

How would you like to know the secrets to choosing a satisfying career that will also be a hot job?

By understanding the major trends that are affecting our lives, you will be able to play an active role in planning and directing your career. By understanding these trends you will have a better chance of seeing the big changes before they hit.

This look into the future will show you the hot jobs that are expected to have high demand and some that aren't. But more importantly this article will show you the basics of "trend spotting" so that you can make your own intelligent career choices.

If you are not interested in "the how and the why" of looking into the future of careers and jobs, simply click here to jump to the list of "Hot Jobs For The Future."

Trend Spotting

By understanding the major trends that affect jobs you will be able to make better career decisions for yourself.

Trends are like waves on the ocean. Some are very big, some are very small. Some trends last only a few years like the DOT COM trend, while others go on seemingly forever.

The trends we are interested in may be as short as a few years or as long as 20+ years. Just like waves, trends move and change everything they come in contact with. If you aren't prepared for the big wave it will wash over you, tumbling you like a toy in the ocean.

Initially, trends start off so small that most people don't notice them. Eventually trends build up to a crescendo. Somewhere in between they make the evening news. The trick is to spot trends just as they begin, so that you have time to take action and change your life. An even better trick would be to predict the trends before they start.

To get a feel for job trends, let's look at a few that have come and gone.

Technology Trends

Probably the most prevalent trend in our time has been that of technological innovation.

Revolutions in technology continue to cause rapid, almost un-predictable changes in career demand. Changes in technology can obsolete your job causing you to be laid off, downsized, right sized, and just plain inconvenienced.

Here are a few examples of jobs which were once "Hot Jobs" with high demand but are now declining or totally extinct, at least in North America and Europe:

  • Typesetting - Has been replaced by the first Apple computers and the advent of desktop publishing. Typesetting began in the 1400's with the first printing presses. The trend away from typesetting to desktop publishing started in the early 1980's and was completed by the mid 1990's. Thousands of people had their careers upset by this trend.
  • Secretarial Dictation - Has been replaced by individuals doing their own word processing, starting in the late 1980's as the cost of personal computers came down.
  • IBM punch card operator - Was obsoleted along with IBM punch cards by ~1985. Prior to that, punch card data entry employed tens of thousands.
  • Telex (TWX) Operator - Was obsoleted by the advent of the FAX machine, ~ 1980
  • FAX Machine Operator - Once the cost of FAX machines came down, most people handled their own faxes rather than having an assistant do it. Finally, most but not all faxes gave way to Email. 1980 to 1995.
  • Telephone Operators - Once a premier job, demand was reduced significantly by touch tone systems and then later by voice recognition technology.
  • Drafting Technician- Manual drafting using pencil and ruler was replaced by Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) in the 1980's.

Low Tech Is Good Tech

Not all careers need be adversely affected by technology.

These traditional businesses will see change, but not overnight obsolescence:

  • Upscale jewelry stores
  • Custom jewelry manufacturing
  • Stores where "service" is the main feature
  • Restaurants
  • Movie theaters
  • Movie making
  • Music creation
  • Delivery services
  • Grocery stores
  • Hair Salons
  • Auto Repair
  • Construction

Drivers Of The Trends

Trends are about change and every change has at its core, a "driver." To predict or spot a new trend, look for these basic forms of drivers.

  • The need to save time
  • The need to reduce cost
  • The need to do things faster
  • The need to make things easier to use
  • The need to improve safety and reliability
  • The need to lessen the impact on the environment
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