Four trends that could help your career in 2013

With unemployment still high, many Americans are looking to find a job, change careers, or update their skills. Here are four trends for 2013 that can help you make smart career moves.

3. High tech invades everything

A woman uses TrekDesk, a workstation that is designed to fit over a treadmill, in Phoenix in this 2011 file photo. High tech will invade the workplace even more in coming years, which means workers will have to continue to update their skills.

Ten years ago, MP3 players were mostly stand-alone devices that could only play music. Today, their functionality – as well as that of cameras, game players, and a host of other applications – have been integrated into smart phones, launching a vibrant industry of thousands of app programmers, whose products are expected to create a $25 billion market by 2015.

No matter what industry it's in, your job may soon get a tech upgrade. By 2020, 70 percent of jobs will have a high-technology component. Every field will be affected: Office workers will manage company social media accounts; factories will invest in computer-controlled machinery requiring maintenance and programming; and health care will rely on high-tech equipment for training, remote monitoring of patients, and growing disciplines like medical informatics. Companies will expect their workers to collaborate with overseas partners, interpret masses of customer and sales data, and make the intuitive decisions that even the "smartest" computers aren't yet able to master.

So plan your career with technology in mind. Basic office-technology skills will be a requirement for nearly every job by the next decade. By learning the technology that fuels your industry, you'll be better able to shift to other jobs with higher pay or greater potential. Accept any offer of workplace technology training. And keep these tech skills fresh – the ones you learned during college or even in your last job are probably already obsolete. Nobody wants to be last decade's model!

3 of 4

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.