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What will your job look like in 10 years?

I have always been fascinated by the following quote from Bill Gates, “Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years.”

I am firmly in the overestimating camp and always try to do too much in a year. As I get older and hopefully wiser I am looking down the road more than I used to. When I look 10 years down the road, I really believe maybe 1 in 10 people will be doing what they currently do professionally or at the very least, technology will be more integrated with the tasks at hand.

That view is also shared by Joe Davis, Vanguard’s global chief economist, who argued that the factors moving markets on a day-to-day basis, or even a month-to-month, or year-to-year basis, were minor compared with a trend that may be less visible when looking at data or balance sheets.

Automation and technology are morphing at a rate we have never seen before. What do I mean? I mean that companies are testing technology right now that will leave, by some estimates, 40% of the workforce without a job within the next 10 years.

Let’s look at some examples:

  • Waymo and Uber are vying for a completely autonomous self-driving car. Anheuser-Busch hauled a trailer loaded with beer 120 miles in an autonomous-driven truck, completing what’s believed to be the first commercial shipment by a self-driving vehicle. So, if you supplement your income behind the wheel of a car, you might not have a job in five to ten years.
  • YUM Brands CEO Greg Creed told CNBC in an interview on 3/28/2017, “AI, robots, and automation could replace humans in the food services industry by the mid-2020’s.” YUM Brands, which owns Pizza Hut, K, C and Taco Bell, has already set up automated kiosks in Shanghai, China and in one of those stores, a Pizza Hut customer is greeted by a robot.
  • FedEx isn’t going to be left behind according to Rob Carder, chief information officer (CIO) of FedEx when he stated, “You [will be able to] just talk your way through and [Alexa will] ask the right questions to make sure you’ve completed the work and then you can expect a truck to roll up to the front door of your office, pick up the shipments, and move them along.”

This technology isn’t a thought, it is currently being tested and perfected. When we look at conventional financial planning, conventional wisdom, and conventional jobs, the idea of “conventional” is getting wiped away.

What Uber, Airbnb, and Netflix have done to their respective industries through technology, the internet and automation are going to do to our economy and the employment landscape, the likes of which we have never seen.

If you are not where you want to be professionally, financially, geographically or spiritually, I would make a plan to get there because this convergence of technology, automation and innovation will be here before you know it.

It is our belief that you need to be Uncommon if you want to maintain your standard of living. You need to control your real assets now because sooner rather than later, the music is going to stop and if you don’t find a chair, you may not like where you end up.