women
Change is less stressful when anticipated. Keep abreast of recent developments within your industry, familiarize yourself with new technology, try to gain experience of as many different skills as possible, and maximize the options available to you.

Reassessing markets

The ability to anticipate change depends on recognizing shifts in supply and demand in the labour market. This is not easy, if only because the advent of computers has meant that changes occur much more rapidly than in the past. There are, however, a few key communication and computer technologies, including the Internet and multimedia, that are widely available and drive many other developments. Keeping abreast of changes within these technologies can maximize job prospects and minimize stress by giving you the ability to change with the employment market.

Understanding new technology

Computers are fundamental to 99 per cent of the world’s businesses. But many senior managers who are responsible for purchasing hardware and deciding how to use it have scant knowledge of how much it can do. Courses covering all stages are available to help you improve your computer skills – utilize them, since computer literacy is essential for employees at all levels.

Surfing the internet

The advent of e-mail and the World Wide Web on the Internet is rapidly changing the way we all work.

Relocating offices

Information technology provides more flexibility in the way we work today by enabling individuals to decide how and where they work. Those whose jobs require little more than a computer and a phone can work as easily in an airport lounge or the back seat of a car as in a traditional office. Many people now choose to work at home. In this way they can work without the usual interruptions, while avoiding the cumulative stress of commuting and reducing travel costs. Everyday chores such as shopping and settling bills are increasingly being carried out by computer from “home offices”.

Working from home

Try to locate your home office in a room set aside for that purpose, as far as possible from living and sleeping areas, so you can leave work behind at the end of the day. Many people who work at home convert a garage or garden shed into an office.

Diversifying careers

One spin-off from the rapid changes occurring in the workplace is the opportunity to enjoy several different careers during a lifetime. Traditionally, people learned a trade or profession that they then practised throughout their working life. Today, the demand for skills is changing so fast that this is no longer very likely to happen.

Adaptability and flexibility are vital to minimize the stress of redundancy. Anticipate changes, and be prepared for them wherever possible. Retrain if necessary, and look on an unexpected job loss as an “opportunity”, allowing you to pursue a new career doing something that really interests you.

TIP

Be prepared to change career at least once in your working life.

TIP

When learning new technology, start slowly and build confidence.

TIP

Try to set up an office near other people: isolation can be stressful.

TIP

Make sure your home office is separate from your living space.

TIP

It is never too late to learn a new skill such as computing.

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