Every new generation brings a new set of challenges and issues to the workplace both for workers and hiring managers to deal with if they want their companies to be sustainable into the future.
More and more jobs are shifting towards automation and A.I. technology, managers are struggling to oversee multi-locational teams, and both Millennial and Baby-Boomers are stumbling to communicate effectively.
Clearly, today’s modern workforce is faced with a unique set of hurdles for both employees and employers. We need to learn how to navigate them if we want to keep moving forward in our careers.
Here is what some of the top experts and career advisors view as the most common career challenges people are facing today and strategies to overcome them:
1. The partner’s involuntary career change
In today’s dual-income families, one partner can be recruited, promoted, or transferred to another city, country or continent, which puts their partner in the unenviable position of having to find another job in a new location.
Relocation is disruptive for any family but one partner will often be required to make a bigger sacrifice than the other in terms of career.”
So what’s the solution to handling a partner’s relocation?
Get the company to offer benefits to minimize the disruption to the rest of the family.
Ask your partner to negotiate a relocation and job search assistance package as part of the transfer; sometimes this is included in a corporate-sponsored move.
2. Career transitioning
Job seekers often lack the ability to transfer previous work experiences and skills into new industries and employment opportunities.
The fact is many employers are looking for personality types, individuals with specific soft skills. The technical side of the job can be taught on-site. Job seekers seem to think if their experience does not match a job posting’s desired requirements 100% then they don’t stand a chance and don’t bother applying.
Candidates shouldn’t be afraid to apply for jobs that may not seem like a perfect fit on paper.
There will always be areas where an applicant may be lacking but then they may also excel in other areas the company would find valuable.
3. Multi-Generational workplace
Too often people may lose their job in their 50’s due to a range of organisational changes and then have extreme difficulty in finding work.
This often comes from teams that include the millennials with new and creative ideas, alongside the Gen X-ers and Baby Boomers with deep industry and client expertise. With less new skilled entrants into the workforce compared to those retiring, companies that don’t value the mature workforce could find themselves understaffed.
4. The career pivot
People are changing jobs more frequently today than ever before and many choose to make a career change. It can be challenging, and job seekers should really think about a career they see themselves remaining in for the long term. Making a career change is not something you want to be doing many times over.
5. Balancing meaning and duty
Millennials search for work that meets both business objectives and also fulfils them personally by aligning with their values.”
The challenge is finding a job that is fulfilling and has personal meaning. Then they need to reconcile that with the work that “needs to get done” or some of the less fulfilling requirements and objectives of the position.
6. Too many choices
Today’s single biggest career challenge is figuring out what you really want to do.
There are more choices than ever before, and there is more information to process. People have difficulty looking inside themselves for the answer to what they really want to do.”
7. Finding a purpose
We’ve been taught that finding a job we are passionate about is the key to success.
The problem is that there just aren’t enough jobs out there for all millennials to find a position that is full of both internal and external rewards. Entry-level jobs can seem especially mindless and insignificant, which is why it’s vital for millennials to think about their medium and long-term goals instead of freaking out about not feeling a sense of purpose during the first years of their careers.
Purpose comes with understanding what it is you want and how you believe you can and should contribute to the world you live in.
8. Lack of workforce mobility
Gone are the days of a stream of readily available employees who will move for the right development opportunities.
On the employee side it creates a dynamic which results in a greater number of transitions between companies to drive professional development and career progression.
On the employer side it results in a continuing trend of increased undesired turnover.
The burden falls to HR to develop retain and retrain strategies for the long-term.
The residual effect of this issue challenges corporations and hiring managers to rethink their traditional paradigms of “job hopping” and to be proactive in identifying talent-rich geographies for forecasted future employee growth.
9. Being moved to another role you aren’t passionate about
The professional world is more cut-throat than ever before, with more skills available to be learned and mastered than at any other point in history. There are more roles, industries and made-up job titles than anyone can count, and having transferable skills can be a gift and a curse. Just because you may be good at something, it doesn’t mean you necessarily want it to be your responsibility. However, if your managers get wind of your ability, you could soon find yourself getting moved about.
10. Staying current
Whether it is professional development specifically for your industry, learning the latest LinkedIn changes, or even mastering new computer programs, those who do not evolve will be left behind. Even non-tech-savvy positions now require that the candidates be fluent in online application systems. If you aren’t learning something, you are doomed to a stagnant career at best and potential long-term unemployment at the worst.