Job Mobility is Job Stability

Man walking to find a new job

Gone are the days when mastering a single skill set and sticking to it for life guaranteed a secure career. In the design industry, this change is particularly evident. The traditional notion of job stability—climbing the corporate ladder within a single organization—has been replaced by job mobility. Recent surveys show Millennials and Gen-Z are hopping jobs far more than previous generations.

Being able to adapt, learn, and apply a variety of skills is the new form of job security. Designers who diversify their skill sets are not only more valuable to their current employers but also more attractive to potential ones.

The design landscape is ever-changing, and if you’re not evolving, you’re falling behind. Learning AI skills is like adding a turbo boost to your career. It’s not just about automating repetitive tasks; it’s about enhancing your creativity. Imagine having an AI tool that can predict user behavior, helping you design more intuitive interfaces. That’s not just efficiency; that’s innovation.

You don’t have to limit yourself to one corner of the design world. With a broader skill set, you can explore lateral career moves. Maybe today you’re a graphic designer, but tomorrow you could be leading a team focused on user experience. These aren’t just changes in job titles; they’re opportunities for personal and professional growth. And let’s be honest, who doesn’t love the idea of being the Swiss Army knife of the design world?

Employers are catching on too. They’re on the lookout for designers who are not just experts but also versatile problem solvers. They are looking for more than “T-shaped” individuals—those with deep expertise in one area and a broad range of complementary skills. A couple of years ago I spoke to a college class about broadening skill sets and transforming from T-shaped to V-shaped. I call it being “V-shaped” because you still have the traditional t-shaped skillset, but you get deeper in multiple adjacent areas. It’s like being a superhero in the design world; you have more than one power, and that makes you invaluable.

In the context of design, this could mean being an expert in graphic design while also having a good grasp of AI, project management, and perhaps even a bit of coding. This multi-disciplinary approach makes you irreplaceable and ensures that you can adapt to whatever challenges come your way.

Job mobility is the new job stability, especially in fields as dynamic as design. By diversifying your skills and embracing emerging technologies like AI, you’re not just future-proofing your career; you’re also making yourself an invaluable asset to your current and future employers.

So, the next time you’re scrolling through online courses, debating whether to learn something new, just go for it. Each skill you add is more than a resume booster; it’s your ticket to a more fulfilling and stable career. Trust me, future you will thank you.

News at the Intersection of AI and Design

📈 AI Won’t Kill the Experienced Marketer’s Career. It Will Propel It.

The article explores how AI is not a threat but a boon to experienced marketers, enhancing their skills and strategies.

  • Human-AI Synergy: Experienced marketers can use AI as a powerful tool to amplify their existing skills, leading to more nuanced and effective marketing strategies.
  • Continuous Learning: The future of marketing is a symbiotic relationship between humans and AI, where both adapt and learn from each other, ensuring ethical decision-making and ongoing improvement.

Keep reading

👩‍💻 So Much for ‘Learn to Code’

Challenging the conventional wisdom, the piece delves into how a computer science degree may not be the golden ticket to job security it once was, particularly in the AI era.

  • Job Security Myth: Advancements in AI are shaking up the once-stable promise that a computer science degree almost guaranteed job security.
  • Humanities vs. Tech: As computer science enrollments soar and humanities decline, the article raises questions about the overlooked value of a diverse education.

Keep reading

🌌 The AI Transformation Constellation

David Armano introduces the “AI Transformation Constellation,” a framework that likens the critical aspects of AI transformation in a company to a harmonious solar system, with Company Culture at its center.

  • Company Culture: The article emphasizes that a company’s culture can either act as a catalyst or a barrier to AI adoption, affecting how quickly and effectively a company embraces AI.
  • Holistic Approach: It’s not just about the technology; the article stresses the importance of considering ongoing education, workforce impact, and industry-specific applications in a company’s AI journey.

Keep reading

New Resources for you

I recently listened to Aaron Hassen on The Dan Nestle Show and they discussed many topics including the value of trust in all that we do. With the popularization of AI, we’re going to have a very hard time determining what can be trusted and what can’t.

Recently, Richie Etwaru and Vala Afshar (who has a new book out) discussed this very topic on ZDNet. They proposed some sort of “credit report” for content. That way we’d be able to know what to trust.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see the blockchain as a way to verify information. Blockchain will be a necessary thing once it gets out of the trough of disillusionment where it’s currently hanging out.

Last week at MarketingProf’s B2B conference, the word on every speaker and attendee’s lips was “AI.” If you’re reading a newsletter like this, you’re already ahead of most people. Keep playing and trying new things!

Finally, an article I wrote inspired Spencer Crandall to explore an idea and he really went all in on what can be done with GenAI. I recommend checking it out.

I recently tried Dall-E 3.


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Jim MacLeod

Jim MacLeod

Jim MacLeod was a graphic designer for more than a decade before pivoting to adjacent areas of focus such as marketing, digital experience, and branding. Knowing that AI is going to displace many graphic designers, Jim set up After Design to help designers prepare for this impending change. 

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