A consumer’s attention is the new currency and if you can can capture that via your digital platform, then you’re only 30% there. As our Google reading assignments pointed out this week, almost gone are the days where everything is about hard data, big fancy resumes, and dense cover letters. You now have to engage employers and one of the ways to do that is a video resume. Some companies are starting to favor video presentations so they can see how you present yourself when describing your business and leadership experience. My own workplace, in the MBA Program Office at the Wharton School is starting to require such documentation.
The above mentioned, however, doesn’t mean quantitative skills are not needed. Perhaps now more than ever, practical and analytical skills are required to make logical business decisions but they must be accompanied with strong soft skills. As the NY times articles points out about how Google operates, employees move around a lot and many of those workers are skilled in both engineering and soft skills. They are both creative and analytical. Also, I like the point that Friedman makes about gone are the days where one can just get any degree but you must get a degree that develops logical thinking. This is a personal realization and disruption to the current job I do, and even the educational choices I have made thus far. I feel the pressure when we’re in a staff meeting and our dean, who is a finance professor, looks around at our team with a quantitative question and most of us can’t offer any strong quant strategies. There needs to be a better balance in order to innovate in this ever changing digital environment.
It’s good to know there is now a campaign for girls to join fields like engineering and math. In order to be competitive in the current workforce, I think all people should be encouraged towards quants. During my grade school years I was only encouraged towards secretarial and court reporting fields and I drank the kool-aid. Sweet, but no substance.
Just like one cannot sit out politics in the workforce, seniors cannot afford to ignore technology and most will not be able to escape coding, math, and analytical skills. We can engage a seeking employer with a professional branding campaign, and possibly get that job but we will have to keep it with logic, leadership, humility, collaboration, adaptability and loving to learn and re-learn. This will be true no matter where you work.
We are not in Kansas anymore.