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How You Can Stay Relevant in the Job Market


Simon Lusty is Managing Director for Aquent Australia (which includes Vitamin T Down Under). With many years of experience working with the digital creative world, and running teams, he’s got a lot of good advice on how to adapt in a rapidly changing job market.

I have been working in the people business for close to 20 years. The last 12 years have been specialising in digital, design and communications. I have interviewed and placed hundreds of people into new jobs. I have inspired careers and have witnessed people and brands grow, evolve, and adapt.

But it is today —  the market, the opportunity, and the journey that we are on — that is most challenging, scary and thrilling. Today is about reinvention, evolution, and adaptation. Some will survive and sadly, many will not.

Take a look at this video, or read on, to find out what you must do to increase your personal brand, online profile, and skills in order to adapt to the changing world of the future of work.

Adaptation has always existed. So what is working in the year 2020 going to look like?

Initiatives such as ‘creative work hubs’ will continue to evolve; projects will be strategised and delivered through more collaboration of freelance specialists; there will be less geographic boundaries, more flexibility, and greater embracing of organic workspaces. All of this will continue to evolve.

But this already exists. The question is – how do you adapt today, to stay relevant in the future?

Whilst companies and industries are 100% under threat, guess what – so are you!

I have many examples of where people’s careers have plateaued because they have stopped growing, stopped learning, and stopped adapting.

Do you know the number one reason people cite as their reason for leaving a role? Lack of career opportunity! And yet when I ask for recent examples that demonstrate upward growth, responses are often weak and flaky.

I am going to tell you something for free.

‘Nobody, and I mean NOBODY, is losing sleep over your career’. And nor should they.

Generally, the underlying reason your career has not progressed is that you have not taken control of it.

What’s happening right now?

The talent who will be in most demand in the future, are those that are focused on ‘upward growth’.

This concept is focused around one’s ability to take responsibility for continually improving their skills, knowledge, and capability. People who ‘own’ this are constantly trying to better themselves – regardless of how experienced they are.

Reinvent yourself!

So HOW do you start reinventing yourself today to ensure you position yourself in the top 10% of ‘in-demand’ talent? Let me share some ideas.

The first of which was from a presentation I heard from Chris Savage on the topic ‘Brand You’.

He spoke about how important it was to work on yourself as a project. The session was very confronting. His view is that your personal brand is measured against four key pillars. I encourage you rate yourself out of 10 against each:

  1. You are expert at something
  2. You are known for delivering outcomes
  3. You have a view or opinion on the future
  4. You are recognised as a supportive colleague

Secondly, what about your ‘Online Brand’ – LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook?

Remember this: as we move on this journey, it will become increasingly common that you will no longer look for jobs, that jobs will look for you, and if that is the case, how does your online brand sell and differentiate you against the others? Think about that.

Finally, you must keep learning. One way you can do this is through MOOCs – which stands for Massively Open Online Courses – many of which are FREE! Some that I would highly recommend:

Aquent GymnasiumSpecifically designed to bridge the digital skills gap

Coursera: Features over 200 courses from 33 universities

edX: Courses from universities such as MIT and Harvard

There’s one thing I can assure you. Come the year 2020, we will all still be here. But will you be present, relevant, and in demand?

Well that all depends on whether or not you act now.

Video credit: Produced in conjunction with AGDA & Think Design Education at Vivid Sydney in 2014.

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