When A Jack Has To Be A King!

‘Don’t be a Jack of All & A King of None!’ is something I was habitually reminded of by my parents and teachers throughout my early life. Taking this in full stride, I entered the IT industry with a deep knowledge of one particular skill. I spent all my time, effort and energy during my training focusing on building a robust understanding of this skill and to ensure I was the ‘king’ at it.

And my up-skilling didn’t stop once I secured my first job, but in fact, it became even more demanding. I remember a pile of books waiting for me every day as I came home from a tiring day at work. Skill at night, work during the day. Like most in the IT sector during this time, this was my routine.

Today, digitization has brought the opportunity to upskill to our doorstep. This has allowed IT professionals, young and old, to upskill and reskill anytime, anywhere. What a great era to live in? And as I compare the grit and commitment one needed to have in the early ages of the IT revolution, this must seem like heaven, right? Well, it depends on which way you look at it.

Upskilling helps you to enhance your professional value, stay abreast of the market trends & skill requirements to ensure that you not only keep up with the changes, but stay ahead of them. With incidences of mass layoffs in the industry over the past few years, upskilling may be the only way to truly future-proof your career trajectory. Change in the form of technological advancement has become a constant, and organizations are looking at skilled resources to cater to emerging technologies such as AI, robotics, big data, machine learning, UI/UX, design thinking, IoT (Internet of Things), and cloud to secure the path of their future business performance. Skilling is not only restricted to the IT industry, but even on the national agenda today with the Skill India mission, which aims to train over 40 crore people in India in different skills by 2022.

With new age skill requirements being critical to IT companies, upskilling opportunities at your doorstep, MOOC giving a cost optimal upskilling solutions, and mobility enabling upskilling anytime, anywhere, it can easily seem as a glorious age for new IT professionals entering the industry. But then, why does industry research still claim that 9 out 10 fresh engineering /IT graduates are still unemployable and lack specific skills?

The answer is in the demand and expectations of the industry. The industry still frowns upon the ‘Jack of all, King of None’ professional, but with growing pressure from clients and rapid advancements in technology, IT companies desire a “Jack of All & King of All”; in IT parlance, a ‘full stack’ professional. The industry today is in a dire search for multi skilled resources with deep understanding of each skill. This is a tough ask, but not impossible in today’s age. Maybe, it’s the time for me to tell my children that this is the era when even a ‘Jack’ has to be a ‘King’, too. #NewAgeLIFE #UpskillOrPerish #NewAgeDELIVERY

Sabyasachi Mishra

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