Whether you are just starting out or an experienced pro considering a mid-career switch, it can be extremely difficult to decide where to start building your new career.
Especially if you have a few years of professional experience under your belt, you know that swimming against the tide is not the way to go. Lots of job starters have a sixth sense for this too. You want to find an industry and role where you are swimming with the tide. But how do you determine which industries and roles are promising long-term bets?
This is one of the most common hurdles that new and experienced professionals face. To help you trace out your career path, I’ll present a framework that will help you find promising and novel career options. I’ll also provide 8 examples of promising future careers.
The Frontier Career Framework
You want to build a career in an industry and role that will challenge and reward you over the next few decades. That’s smart, and you think ahead. Working on the frontier of technology and progress is one of the best spots to place yourself to achieve this goal.
But maybe your skillset doesn’t match one of these progressive industries. Doesn’t matter. Some of the most successful people at Google aren’t software engineers working on search. Same goes for any company you can name and their respective core competencies. Amazon, Apple, Tesla, SpaceX, or any other. It’s still true.
It’s actually much wiser to build your career away from the core competency of any industry because trends come and go, and you won’t pigeonhole yourself in one speciality. It’s much easier for a lawyer to transfer their skills and experience than a materials engineer working on lunar launch vehicles.
So here’s my super simple framework to find low-risk and highly rewarding careers that just might give you a rich and purposeful ride over the next few decades:
- Make a list of up-and-coming frontier industries.
- Identify established professions that fit your strengths, background and personality.
- Match the industry to the role based on the unique needs of that industry.
That’s it. A simple way to swim with the tide, not against it, while working in a role that matches your skillset and in an exciting industry with great potential.
Read on for some examples of this framework in action. But just a quick point, this is more about the framework than the examples. A process to identify promising careers is so much more valuable than someone else’s ideas because you can use it as a superpower to find your own.
8 Promising Careers of the Future
Using this framework, here are 8 high-potential ideas for building a future career that blend an established profession with an up-and-coming field or technology:
Become a Web3 Lawyer
It’s fair to say that there has been a lot of development in the Web3 space, and I think it’s also fair to say that there are a lot of projects operating at the fringes of existing legal and regulatory frameworks. Whether it’s in DAOs, NFTs, Crypto or DeFi, there will be a lot of demand for good lawyers with experience and understanding in all things Web3.
Become a Crypto Financial Analyst
So far, much of the activity in the Web3 space has been led by individuals and some newly formed institutions (like venture capital specialists). If you believe that more financial institutions will enter the crypto space, this will be a good place to build a career.
Institutions will need advice on which tokens to buy, when to buy and sell, and how to hold their investments. As we speak, there may be a new role of Crypto Analyst emerging, to match the high paid and influential Equity Analysts who cover listed companies.
Become a DeFi Risk & Compliance Specialist
Just quickly, DeFi is Decentralized Finance, which is the offshoot of crypto that offers financial instruments without relying on intermediaries, by using smart contracts on a blockchain. The volume of transactions in DeFi has been increasing. Historically when the volume of transactions in a financial instrument increases, regulatory attention and compliance requirements are not far behind. Bringing the risk and compliance skillset to the DeFi world might be a promising area to build a career.
Become a Metaverse Policy Expert
Meta (of Facebook fame) recently announced that they will spend at least $10 billion per year on building in the metaverse. Creating a whole new digital world will bring along with it many of the challenges we experience in the real world. If it works, and everyday people spend more of their time in the metaverse, there will be a big need for policy experts to write the rules that will prevail in this new world. Establishing yourself early as an expert in this space might leave you in high demand for many years to come.
Become a Cybersecurity Strategy Expert
The world is becoming increasingly digital. Companies and governments are moving their work flows, operations and data online and it is increasingly at risk of breach by hackers. It’s easy to believe that there will be high demand for cyber strategy work for years to come dealing with questions like how to prepare, where to invest and how to respond to cyber attacks.
Become a Cybersecurity Dispute Resolution Expert
With cyber attacks increasing every year, both in volume and size, more and more there will be disputes between parties in this area. Individuals, companies, technology providers, insurers and many other organizations will all be brought into cyber disputes. This might be an area where a professional with the right mediation skills can help all parties get to a better outcome.
Become an Artificial Intelligence Compliance Expert
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is finding its way into many consumer and business products. From the Netflix algorithm to the virtual assistant on your phone. Software engineers and technology companies keep pushing the limits of what’s possible, and it’s a great thing for the end user. However, it is largely agreed that there needs to be balance in this equation and that opens up the opportunity for ethics and compliance experts to make their mark on the AI field, mostly at large technology companies or adjacent organizations.
Become a Space Industry Financial Controller
Activity in the space industry feels like it’s exploding. Whether it’s the billionaires competing at SpaceX and Blue Origin, global satellite networks, or plans for moon bases and Mars colonies. There’s a lot of money going into the space industry. The engineers, scientists and operations specialists at space companies will need strong financial support to keep their spending and burn on track so they have the resources to achieve their goals. This is where professionals with financial skills come in, you can possibly make a huge impact by bringing prudent financial controls to the space industry.
I hope this provided you with a way to think about your exciting future career options and some interesting examples to get your started. I’m really excited to think about how you mix and match these ideas with others to come up with really interesting new opportunities.
Before you go: I have interviewed 500+ professionals, surveyed thousands more, and I am always probing for their best tips, tricks and hacks to get ahead. There are five that stand out above the rest and you can get them right now by joining my free email list. You won’t find these ideas anywhere else.