Personal branding is hardly a recent phenomenon.
In the past, people knew professionals for their skills through word of mouth. The age-old phrase “your reputation precedes you” was indeed the quintessence of personal branding. But today, we must consciously craft our digital footprint on the internet to improve our chances of professional success, let alone achieving fame.
While many professionals in domains such as academics, arts, medicine and law have adapted themselves to this need, many techies, in my experience, have been relatively oblivious to it. Considering the current technological disruptions caused by artificial intelligence (AI) and automation, this inaction could have far-reaching consequences on tech careers.
What are these potential negative effects? And how can those in technology weather this storm by building a digital footprint? Here are some answers.
1. The shelf life of technical expertise has severely diminished.
Every year, the world’s largest technology vendors conduct their respective mega-events, an annual ritual where they announce a host of new services—increasingly powered by AI and automation—culling the old and giving life to the new.
What gets culled alongside is often the value of the expertise built by millions of tech professionals worldwide. On that day, their expertise attains half-life, destined to deteriorate at a faster pace from then on. They now have an upgraded technology to master, a new ghost to chase!
The pace of change is alarming. “Once-in-a-decade” occurrences are now happening at much shorter time intervals. Techies who do not prove their expertise within this short window stand to lose months of hard work. Superior technology effectively nullifies their past knowledge.
2. Transferable skills are as important as technical skills.
Many employers have realized that even for a core tech job, tech skills alone are not enough.