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3 Ways To Not Be Replaced By Robots In The Future of Work

March 10, 2017

Are you afraid that you might be replaced by robots in the future of work?

In the year 2021, robots will have eliminated 6% of all jobs in the US, starting with customer service representatives and eventually truck and taxi drivers.

“By 2021 a disruptive tidal wave will begin. Solutions powered by AI/cognitive technology will displace jobs, with the biggest impact felt in transportation, logistics, customer service and consumer services,” said Forrester’s Brian Hopkins in the report.

In the transportation industry, Uber, Google and Tesla are working on driverless cars, while similar technology is creeping its way into trucking to replace human drivers.

There are two ways to respond to the innovations of technology:

  1. Be afraid for the future and of losing jobs


2. Focus on becoming ‘masters’ at human skills that cannot be automated

My suggestion is that we focus on the second solution which is focus on mastering human skills that cannot be automated.

Here are 3 ways to NOT be replaced by robots in the future of work.

#1 – Become an absolute master of ‘being human’ which means building the skills of empathy, listening, emotional intelligence and human to human solutions. Fortune provides an excellent chart of jobs that are least likely to be replaced by robots. Those jobs include being a leader and being an expert. If your job skills are task focused and you have not spent time developing your people skills this is an area you will want to focus on as we head to 2021.

#2 – Be a ‘relevancy’ nut – focus on upgrading your thinking, your beliefs and your actions to meet with a fast changing pace of change. In my book, “The Art of Change Leadership – Driving Transformation In a Fast Paced World” I provide the ‘change wheel’ and the ability to understand ‘energy’ between people as future of work skills. You MUST be relevant to your company and your team- this may mean upgrading your tech skills, upgrading your leadership skills as well as upgrading your creative thinking skills.

#3 – Keep your focus on change ahead and do not get lulled into complacency or head in the sand. Are you curious to know if your job or industry is going to be caught in the automation tidal wave? check out this list by Mckinsey on the potential of automation transforming your job or industry. Focus on building the skills of an entrepreneur, resilient, quick to change, creative solutions and flexibility.

I am excited about the future of work because it means that robotics and automation are going to focus on the repetitive tasks that make work boring! Think about your current industry or job – wouldn’t you like to spend more time on coaching, developing, creating? That’s what automation is going to do for all industries.

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