Parents, young people often come to me asking for career advice. Most often, I end up not giving any particular solution to what they are asking. What I do is to share information and my understanding about the different possibilities that they have in mind so that it makes it easy for them to make a decision. This comes out of my belief that no career is bad. All careers are good. Each career direction could lead to success.
I remember the creator of Dilbert, Scott Adams for the best career advice. He said, it’s not about any particular skill but it’s about combining skills. We all know and realize that the world is becoming an ever more complicated place. Everything is seeming very fuzzy. Its like walking through a mist filled road. Its pleasant, but you can’t see clearly.
Everything is converging together. I cannot be any more about singular skill but about combining different skills and then continuing to layer on new skills on top of it.
The emerging world as it is fuzzy also offers you tremendous opportunities. In today’s times you can want to be both an engineer and a writer. You can be an engineer and to be a professional writer. An engineer with writing skills. You can then be an engineer who can articulate what engineers do and write about it or around it. You could write books about technology as you understand engineering culture. Both of those are highly differentiated skills, very special skills. Add to this mix, another layer, let’s say knowledge of education and then you have ability to write about technology and education and all of a sudden that’s a very special thing.
Basically, to succeed, one skill is not enough and nor would it be multiple skills. Magic is in the combination and layering. You combine skills as the world is going in to the direction where combinations are going to get much more valuable. You keep layering these combinations with another one and extolling the uniqueness of your persona and what you can do. That’s what would keep you happy, content and successful for the years to come, irrespective of the direction the world takes. Happy combining and skilling.