If 2020 was the year that organizations made the transition to a work-from-anywhere future, 2021 will be the year of unlocking possibilities, the year when virtual jobs will become more mainstream.
For Nigerians in particular, this matters more so than in many other countries! It means that many Nigerians will no longer have to choose between local - and sometimes limited - job opportunities and immigration. With the growth in virtual jobs, one’s physical location is becoming less relevant.
The global pandemic has stunted personal development among many, but as we begin our 2021 journey, we look at 5 trends accelerated by COVID-19 to help you reignite those ambitions. Did you promise yourself career progression, a pay rise, or to launch a new business? It's not too late, 2021 can be different, and you can be stronger than ever.
Trend 1: Flexibility
Juggling life and work went under the lens. The global pandemic forced employees to work from home. Schools went remote. Businesses faced crises. Before 2020, a movement was stirring. Technology and digital connectivity had advanced so far and so fast that people had begun to ask, “Do we really need to be in an office, together, to do our work?” The answer globally has been, “No!”
Is work from anywhere here to stay? Flexibility is. Work-from-anywhere organizations have the potential to reverse the brain drain that can often exist in developing markets, small towns, and rural locations. New career opportunities are opening up, regardless of physical location. You can be online in Nigeria and work with an organization in Canada. You can study at an online American university, without leaving your job in Abuja.
Trend 2: Digital transformation
COVID-19 has fast-forwarded digital adoption by at least five years. Are you one of the 58% who has experienced a “skill transformation” since the start of the pandemic? Since the world moved online, tech skills are no longer limited to tech roles. Digital skills are now part of almost every role. Gartner TalentNeuron™ data shows that technology industry leaders like Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Google, and Microsoft look for a digital skillset that includes engineering, digital transformation, security, and tech infrastructure.
The most valuable skills you can build for your future now are hard and soft skills, together. To stand out you need to be equally confident speaking the language of business and technology. You can bridge the gap between business and tech by earning an online MBA from universities such as Nexford University. Accelerate the shift to digital and focus your online MBA with a specialization in areas such as artificial intelligence or e-commerce.
Trend 3: Affordability
The economies of many countries have been shattered by the pandemic, and these economic challenges will impact people’s choices. Choosing a university is one of the most important choices you’ll ever make. We all face an uncertain economic future, but universities with campuses come at a cost. University learners will continue to embrace online learning experiences.
Quality online education, at a price you can afford, shouldn’t be impossible. Nexford University, for example, offers affordable monthly tuition, just $160/month for an MBA in Nigeria. Studies show that you have a 95% chance of completing a goal if you commit a time and a date to someone. Nexford’s monthly tuition helps you commit to your goals, and keeps you motivated – the faster you finish, the less you pay. On average, the MBA takes just 15 months to complete, costing a total of $2,400 for the entire degree.
Trend 4: Self-discipline
By 2025, 50 percent of all employees will need reskilling, according to the World Economic Forum’s ‘Future of Jobs Report.’ One trend accelerated by COVID-19 is learning how to learn, and learning “on the job” takes self-discipline. Online education is arguably the best way to arm a work-from-anywhere generation with the right tools and self-discipline. Employers are increasingly appreciating the level of self-discipline it takes to complete an online degree, arguably more so than a traditional one.
In-demand skills will change as jobs change in the next five years. Nexford University designed its curriculum based on what employers need, including self-discipline. The top skills groups which employers see as the most important in 2021 include critical thinking and analysis as well as problem-solving, and skills in self-management such as active learning, resilience, and flexibility.
Trend 5: Adaptability
COVID-19 has taught us that different is now normal. Masks on. Shops shut. Established businesses now gone. By 2025, 97 million new roles may emerge that are more adapted to the new division of labor between humans, machines, and algorithms. Change is constant and normal.
Be willing to change because life won’t stay the same. With online education, you can study anywhere, become anything.
Apply now to enroll at Nexford University from Nigeria and start seizing your goals in 2021. Don’t let COVID-19 get in the way of your ambition.