10 tips to 'futureproof' your career

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Is it ever possible to futureproof your career in the mining and resources sector?

I think the last few years came as a real shock to those who had only been in the industry during the boom times. And while the market is beginning to pick up, there is still a long way to go until the industry can again be described as booming. With the uptick in the market, sourcing work is becoming easier for those who did lose their roles in recent times, but the uneasiness and uncertainty can remain even when you’re in a permanent role.

Here are my top 10 tips for futureproofing your career and improving your job prospects:

Network. Don’t just rely on the online networks, join professional associations, go to events, or meet people at seminars. We are still a social species and the adage “people like to do business with people they like” can only be achieved if they have met you in person. 

Learn. Continue not just your professional development but also your personal development. Identify if you have areas for improvement and focus on these, or choose a competency and improve on this.

Diversify. Think about your transferable skills and develop cross-industry skills that ensure you could transition to a different role or industry.

Read. Expand your thought processes and read articles and websites on topics that are not related to the industry or your profession.

Volunteer. If you are seeking an opportunity, volunteering is a great way to learn new skills, remain involved, meet new connections and stretch yourself.

Join a group or team . Meeting people outside of your industry is as important as a network within.

Join LinkedIn. Have a strong profile, use second- and third-degree connections for referrals and introductions, and join industry groups and groups of interest.

Technology. Stay abreast of not only technological developments used in your role but also of recruiting and hiring practices. If you are seeking a new role, expect to interact with computers or artificial intelligence via online assessments, screening tools or automated interviews.

Opportunities. Seek out opportunities within your organisation to develop your career or create a career path that gets you to where you want to be.

Develop your soft skills. IQ is great but EQ (Emotional Intelligence) will be more important in the future as artificial intelligence and computers take on more of the routine tasks. Well-developed EQ skills are all transferable and cannot be made redundant by automation.

So, there are the tips. Let me know what you think and, of course, if you want any help with the above, MPi’s Career Support Services can assist.

Dan Hatch
Mining People International