What future work skills are needed for 2020?

Here is a report via Institute of the Future: a report on Future Work Skills 2020, about what future skills are needed in the next decade.

Global connectivity, smart machines, and new media are just some of the drivers reshaping how we think about work, what constitutes work, and the skills we will need to be productive contributors in the future. This report analyzes key drivers that will reshape the landscape of work and identifies key work skills needed in the next 10 years. It does not consider what will be the jobs of the future. Many studies have tried to predict specific job categories and labor requirements. Consistently over the years, however, it has been shown that such predictions are difficult and many of the past predictions have been proven wrong. Rather than focusing on future jobs, this report looks at future work skills—proficiencies and abilities required across different jobs and work settings.

It has direct relevance to the work of lawyers & others in the legal profession. The recommendations for skills building should cross over to our work & training of young lawyers. The trends IFTF sees:

  • The rise of smart systems
  • New media and communication ecology
  • Globally connected networks
  • Extreme longevity & the challenge of longer careers and learning
  • Computational world, with huge amounts of data processing powers and sensor inputs
  • Superstructured organizations, that allow for more production and value creation

The skills we need to live in this world:

  • Social intelligence
  • Trans-disciplinarity
  • New media & communication tech literacy
  • Cross cultural competency
  • Design mindset
  • Virtual collaboration
  • Computational Thinking
  • Social Intelligence
  • Novel & adaptive thinking
  • Sense-making

I would argue that a design-driven mindset is of huge use to this future — and that many of the designer’s mindsets that I’ve spotlighted before cross over into this new skillset. Even if we don’t want our young lawyers to be explicit designers, we want them to be able to think like a designer — curious, flexible, experimental, and interdisciplinary.