631: Future-Proof Your Career: Why You Need to Prioritize Upskilling in Today’s Economy | Master Training Series

Podcast Cover Image: Future-Proof Your Career: Why You Need to Prioritize Upskilling in Today's Economy | Master Training Series
Podcast Cover Image: Future-Proof Your Career: Why You Need to Prioritize Upskilling in Today's Economy | Master Training Series

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Join Jeff Tomlin on the Conquer Local podcast as he discusses the significance of upskilling in today’s evolving job market. Upskilling involves acquiring new competencies or enhancing existing ones through various learning avenues.

This episode emphasizes the importance of prioritizing upskilling in light of the constantly changing technological and economic landscape. As job demands shift rapidly, cultivating new skills becomes crucial for sustained career growth. Especially during economic uncertainty, upskilling offers a competitive advantage, enabling professionals to secure roles and clients effectively.

Tune in for an expert’s insights on leveraging upskilling as a dynamic tool for career empowerment amidst change.

Conquer Local is presented by Vendasta. We have proudly served 5.5+ million local businesses through 60,000+ channel partners. Learn more about Vendasta and we can help your organization or learn more about Vendasta’s Affiliate Program and how our listeners (like yourself) are making up to $10,000 off referrals.

Are you an entrepreneur, salesperson, or marketer? Keep the learning going in the Conquer Local Academy.

Future-Proof Your Career: Why You Need to Prioritize Upskilling in Today’s Economy


Jeff Tomlin: Future-Proof Your Career: Why You Need to Prioritize Upskilling in Today’s Economy

In today’s episode, we’ll be discussing a topic that should be on your radar in 2023: that’s upskilling. Specifically, we’ll be looking at how you can prioritize upskilling in times of economic uncertainty.

So, what is it? Well, simply put, upskilling refers to the process of learning new skills or improving existing ones to stay relevant in the job market. This can involve formal education, training programs, or even self-directed learning.

But why is it so important, and why is it more important now? Well, for starters, the job market is constantly evolving. New technologies and changing economic conditions mean that the skills that were in high demand just a few years ago may not be so relevant today. By upskilling, you can ensure that you’re equipped with the skills you need to land that next big opportunity, whether that’s a new role or that next big client. 

Upskilling is especially important during times of economic uncertainty. During these periods, companies are forced to downsize or cut back on hiring, making it more difficult to find employment. By upskilling, you can make yourself more indispensable, increase your chances of landing that big job, or even position yourself to expand your own business by staying at the forefront of what your clients are looking for in a partnership with your organization.

So, what are some tips for upskilling during tough economic times? Well first and foremost, it’s important to identify which skills are in high demand in your industry. You can do some digging on job postings, conduct research on industry trends, or even talk to hiring managers or recruiters to find out what problems their clients to are trying to solve with the right skilled candidates. 

If you have your own business, you should be paying attention to changing customer demand and how your ideal customers are changing on the front side. 

Once you’ve identified the skills that you need to develop, there are a variety of ways to upskill. Formal education, such as attending a university or trade school, can be a great option for some people. But this is not feasible for everybody due to time constraints and financial constraints.

Online learning platforms like Coursera or Udemy offer courses in a wide range of subjects, often for a fraction of the cost of traditional education. And with the rise of remote work, there are more opportunities than ever to attend virtual workshops, seminars, or conferences.

Conferences like our own Conquer local events have been tailored after valuable, educational events such as Hubspot’s Inbound. Communities like Reforge offer in-depth learnings for more niche subjects and are often guided by real industry experts – operators, not just academics.

While upskilling can be a great way to advance your career and increase your earning potential, there are also some common mistakes to avoid. Here are some of the most common upskilling mistakes to watch out for:

Be sure to avoid focusing on the wrong skills: It’s important to focus on skills that are in high demand in your industry. Don’t waste your time on skills that are outdated or irrelevant. It seems common sense but times and practices are changing quicker than ever. And furthermore, your time is valuable and what you find most interesting to you may not be the most impactful to your career or your business.

Next, don’t fail to plan ahead: Before you start upskilling, it’s important to have a plan in place. This should include a clear goal, a timeline, and a list of resources that you need. Many people that start self-directed learning do not finish, so be goal driven and intentional. Hold yourself to account.

Another common mistake to watch out for is overcommitting: It’s easy to get excited about upskilling and want to learn everything at once. However, it’s important to pace yourself and not overcommit. Set realistic goals and prioritize the most important skills.

Next, repetition builds perfection. Learning new skills takes practice. Be careful not to skip over this crucial step. Make sure to dedicate time to practicing your new skills and applying them in real-world situations. Your new knowledge will stick.

And, finally the mistake of neglecting soft skills: While technical skills are important, soft skills like communication and teamwork are also critical for success in the workplace. Hiring managers are increasingly on the lookout for candidates with soft skills that fit their company’s culture, so don’t neglect these important skills when levelling up. 

So, we’ve talked about what upskilling is, why it’s important, and some tips and mistakes to keep in mind. But you may still be wondering: how do I get started?

So, one approach is to start small. Set aside a little bit of time each week to work on developing a new skill. This could be something as simple as reading an industry publication, attending a virtual workshop, or taking an online course.

Another approach is to find a mentor or accountability partner who can help you stay on track with your goals. This could be a coworker, friend, or even a professional coach.

And finally, don’t forget to celebrate your progress! Learning a new skill can be challenging, but it can also be incredibly rewarding. Take the time to acknowledge your hard work and how far you’ve come.

In times of economic uncertainty, upskilling becomes critical. With job losses and some businesses struggling to survive, you need to remain competitive and adaptable to new roles and industries. Those who can upskill and acquire new skills and knowledge will be better equipped to weather the storm and find new opportunities if necessary.

According to a study by the World Economic Forum, around half of all employees will need reskilling by 2025 due to advances in technology and changes in the job market. This means that upskilling is not just important for those who have lost their jobs, but also for those who want to future-proof their careers.

In addition, upskilling can also lead to higher salaries and better job prospects. A report by LinkedIn found that employees who learned new skills had a 30% higher chance of getting a pay increase or promotion.

If you’re looking to upskill in times of economic uncertainty, here are some tips to help you get started:

First, look for affordable training options: With many people facing financial difficulties, it’s important to find affordable training options. Look for free online courses, webinars, and workshops that can help you acquire new skills.

Next, leverage your existing network: Your existing network can be a great source of information and resources. Reach out to colleagues, to mentors, and to industry groups to find out about training opportunities and resources.

This one is so important – take advantage of company training programs: Many companies offer training programs to help employees upskill or have training allowances. A lot of employees don’t necessarily know about that. If you’re currently employed, check with your HR department to see what programs are available.

And finally, stay up-to-date with industry trends: Keep up with the latest industry trends by reading industry publications and attending conferences and networking events. This will help you stay ahead of the curve and identify new skills to learn.

To wrap up, upskilling is an essential step for individuals looking to remain competitive in their industries, particularly during times of economic uncertainty. By continuously learning new skills, professionals can adapt to changing job requirements and remain valuable to the organizations and clients they serve.

The seventh habit of Steven Covey’s 7 habits of highly effective people is to sharpen the saw. We can’t continually improve our performance unless we make time to work on ourselves.

Remember, the key to successful upskilling is to identify the right skills to learn, set achievable goals, and stay committed to the learning process. By doing so, you can not only weather the economic storm but also emerge stronger and more capable of handling future challenges.

Thank you for tuning in to this episode on future-proofing your career in times of economic uncertainty. Stay tuned for more episodes on business development, career growth and all things B2B. 

If you’ve enjoyed this Master Training Series revisit some of our older episodes. Check out Episode 603: A Strategy That Doesn’t Consider The Gen Z Buyer is Doomed to Fail, Episode 524: Top 10 Sales Metrics or Episode 204: The Killer Presentation Format. Also, check out our Conquer Local Academy. 

Until next time, I’m Jeff Tomlin. Get out there and be awesome!