Adobe & Careers

What are you doing to propel your career?

May 9, 2012

Employee success = company success.

Last week, we kicked off a series of employee development and growth activities across the globe, and we’d like to share our learnings with you. Out of the gates with a bang, from Sydney to Paris and points in between, there were Career Stories panel discussions, during which Adobe employees shared their tips and advice on how they have been able to successfully own their personal development, as well as suggestions on what NOT to do. Here’s some advice:

• Make your extended network aware of your interests and aspirations
• Lateral moves into a different focus area can open up further vertical options in the future, especially important for General Management
• If you don’t have formal training or background in a new area you want to grow, assignments and rotations are a great way to go
• To achieve work-life balance, make sure you are in a job you love. Then the balance takes care of itself.

We also enjoyed the perspectives of two external speakers. Michael J Thomas of Career Systems International (US) shared his thoughts on “What I really need to know about my career.” A key take away was the importance of building a core living network. Those 2-5 people who are your “go to” group for different aspects of your personal growth. He recommends 2-5 as we all have different needs at different times, and to expect one person to fill all those needs is unrealistic.

Robyn Walsh of Davidson Kemp Consultancy ltd (NZ) discussed “Managing your own career in the new world of work.” She shared the 10 skills that will be in high demand over the next 10 years:
1. Sense making: The ability to see the implications and layers underneath what’s being said. Make the connections that computers and robots can’t.
2. Social intelligence: Reading and responding at a highly tuned level when you communicate.
3. Novel and adaptive thinking: Creative and innovative ways of exploring issues. Being able to adapt to the moment.
4. Cross-cultural competency: Being able to operate comfortably in different cultural settings.
5. Computational thinking: Taking data to another level, filtering , improving decision making.
6. New media literacy: Critically assessing and developing content from new media forms and leveraging this to communicate persuasively.
7. Transdisciplinarity: Working in, with and or across multiple disciplines. Moving from specialization to integration and synergy. Moving between levels with the same ease.
8. Design mind-set: Putting tasks and processes together. Changing the environment, the brain and the behavior to get the results you want.
9. Cognitive load management: Being able to filter and focus on what’s needed in a state of information overload.
10. Virtual collaboration: Leaders need skills in engaging and motivating a dispersed group. Team members need to find the right way to work productively and also acknowledge their personal wellbeing. Experience with social media’s “virtual water coolers” is said to be really relevant here.

We’ll have more tips coming your way. In the meantime, how do you rate yourself on these 10 skills in demand for the next 10 years? Post a comment, we’d like to hear your thoughts.

– Brett F., Adobe’s Organizational Development Consultant

Illustration by Troy C., Sr Experience Designer