Digital is here! Does this mean my current skills are redundant?

The New World

I am sure that all you hear about these days in your business is the rise of digital and the threat of disruption. Whether it is digital in the form of social media changing the interaction with your customers from a general one, to a one on one basis, Artificial Intelligence (AI) leading to robots doing your job or disruption resulting in your company being driven out of business, it all makes you think about how you can survive and prosper in this new emerging world. Maybe your first thought is I don’t have the digital skills and knowledge so I won’t survive. Maybe your second is that all my knowledge and skills will be out of date so how will I be of any value anymore. Both thoughts are understandable and most likely lead to anxiety as to what the future may hold. This paper may alleviate this anxiety by recognising that digital skills alone are not a formula for success, but will need to be combined with a range of other skills that have been around for a long time if the full benefits of digital are to be realised.

Technical Skills and Leadership

If you look at most senior leaders in organisations, they are not experts in all areas of their companies. They are however able to lead and direct their companies across all these areas. For example, in a Bank it is unlikely that the CEO is the expert in Technology, Retail Banking, Business Banking, Institutional Banking, Treasury, Wealth Management etc. What they do have is potentially deep knowledge in one particular area but the ability, and potentially broad knowledge across a number of other areas. Indeed in some areas their knowledge may be minimal. However, good leaders know their strengths and their weaknesses. So in areas where their knowledge is not as strong, they supplement this by hiring good people with deep knowledge. The bottom line – this is not new. Nobody is an expert in everything. So the emergence of the world of digital, AI, disruption and the like does not mean you now have NO SKILLS.

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