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Adii Pienaar

Now working on Receiptful. Co-Founder & ex-CEO of WooThemes. Author of Brandiing. New Dad. Ex-Rockstar.

A Human Future

The World Economic Forum (WEF) recently published its "The Future of Jobs Report" for 2018.

In one of its key findings, it suggests that along with the rise of AI and robotization, there'll be an increased demand for specific roles like Data Scientists / Analysts and Software Engineers. As a software/tech entrepreneur this was not surprising.

There was however another sentence that jumped out and resonated with me even more:

Also expected to grow are roles that leverage distinctively ‘human' skills, such as Customer Service Workers, Sales and Marketing Professionals, Training and Development, People and Culture, and Organizational Development Specialists as well as Innovation Managers.

I often feel that I hold a slight contrarian view of our future and especially how this relates to the way we build our businesses. While I totally understand the value that AI, machine learning and bots bring to business, I'm not convinced that the greater implementation of these things alone will create great businesses in future.

In fact, I expect that the most powerful, exclusive and expensive tools today will be democratized, accessible and more cost-efficient for all tomorrow. So pretty soon, most businesses will be at the cutting-edge of sameness in using these technologies.

The thing that I still believe will underpin what makes a business and brand truly great is how we connect with all human stakeholders. To do that, we need other humans. Those humans can wield the tools and influence the robots, but they bring a soul, randomness and magic to interaction that I don't believe machines will replicate.

I don't necessarily believe WEF to be only authoritative voice about this, but it is encouraging to see their findings suggest that specific human skills will be a vital component of how we work and build businesses in future.

So as we continue our investment in technology, let's not forget that our humans require similar (if not, greater) investment.

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