It turns out that professionals are keenly interested in learning new skills (which makes us deliriously happy). And learning tends to spike in January, as people start the year focused on building new habits.
But here’s the challenge: there are at least 50,000 professional skills in the world, according to LinkedIn data. 50,000!
If you’re like us, you probably have time to learn a few skills this month. That begs the question: of those 50,000 skills you could potentially learn, which should you learn today to help you stand out all year?
To find out, we used exclusive LinkedIn data to determine the skills companies need most in 2019. These are the skills your boss and your boss’s boss find most valuable, but have a hard time finding – and the skills that’ll most help you better serve your clients and customers.
So consider this post your guide to the skills most worth learning in 2019.
The Soft Skills Companies Need Most in 2019
Strengthening a soft skill is one of the best investments you can make in your career, as they never go out of style. Plus, the rise of AI is only making soft skills increasingly important, as they are precisely the type of skills robots can’t automate.
That’s why 57% of senior leaders today say soft skills are more important than hard skills.
What are the soft skills companies are looking for most in 2019? They are:
Why it matters, in one sentence: While robots are great at optimizing old ideas, organizations most need creative employees who can conceive the solutions of tomorrow.
Recommended Courses: Creativity Bootcamp, The Five-Step Creative Process, Creativity: Generate Ideas in Greater Quantity and Quality
Why it matters, in one sentence: Having a great product, a great platform or a great concept is one thing, but the key is persuading people to buy into it.
Recommended Courses: Persuading Others, Becoming A Thought Leader, Advanced Consumer Behavior
Why it matters, in one sentence: As projects grow increasingly more complex and global in the age of AI, effective collaboration only grows more important.
Recommended Courses: Collaboration Principles and Process, Being an Effective Team Member, Business Collaboration in the Modern Workplace
Why it matters, in one sentence: An adaptable mind is an essential tool for navigating today’s ever-changing world, as yesterday’s solutions won’t solve tomorrow’s problems.
Recommended Courses: Strategic Agility, Developing Adaptable Employees, Developing Adaptability as a Manager
5. Time Management
Why it matters, in one sentence: A timeless skill, mastering time management today will serve you the rest of your career.
Recommended Courses: Tony Schwartz on Managing Your Energy for Sustainable High Performance, Finding Your Time Management Style, Time Management for Managers
The Hard Skills Companies Need Most in 2019
The skills on this list reflect the impact of our increasingly digital world. Yes, that means a spike in cloud computing and AI, but it also means a spike in improving that digital experience (i.e. UX Design, web development, etc.).
Digital is also giving new uses for skills – for example, there’s increased demand for audio production. This was a skill formerly needed for radio production; today, it’s used for producing podcasts and digital ads.
Here are the hard skills companies need most in 2019, according to LinkedIn data:
1. Cloud Computing
Why it matters, in one sentence: As the world rushes toward the cloud, companies are desperately searching for engineers who have the skills to accommodate this demand.
Recommended Courses: Learning Cloud Computing: Networking, Learning Amazon Web Services (AWS) for Developers, AWS for Architects: Advanced Security
2. Artificial Intelligence
Why it matters, in one sentence: Its official — the Age of AI is here.
Recommended Courses: Artificial Intelligence Foundations: Neural Networks, Artificial Intelligence Foundations: Machine Learning, Machine Learning and AI Foundations: Classification Modeling
3. Analytical Reasoning
Why it matters, in one sentence: As they collect more data than ever before, companies are hungry for professionals who can make smart decisions based off of it.
Recommended Courses: Making Decisions, Decision Making Strategies, Executive Decision Making
4. People Management
Why it matters, in one sentence: The world has changed from a “command-and-control” model toward leaders who can coach and empower, a difficult skillset few professionals possess.
Recommended Courses: Motivating and Engaging Employees, Managing Team Conflict, Leading with Purpose
5. UX Design
Why it matters, in one sentence: UX design is the key to making a digital world work for humans.
Recommended Courses: UX Foundations: Multidevice Design, UX Design: 01 Overview, UX Research for Agile Teams
6. Mobile Application Development
Why it matters, in one sentence: A skill that’s been in-demand for several years as companies continue to design mobile-first platforms.
Recommended Courses: React Native Essential Training, iOS 12 Development Essential Training: 1 Fundamental, UI, and Architecture, iOS 12 Development Essential Training: 2 Web Content, Views, and Distribution
7. Video Production
Why it matters, in one sentence: Demand for video production is spiking as video streaming represents 70 percent of all consumer Internet traffic.
Recommended Courses: Foundations of Video: The Art of Editing, Video Foundations: Cameras and Shooting, Web Video for Business: Creating a Web Series
8. Sales Leadership
Why it matters, in one sentence: Sales is one of those skills that’s always in-demand, and great sales leaders are only becoming harder and harder to find.
Recommended Courses: Sales Coaching, Sales Management Foundations, Sales: Data-Driven Sales Management
Why it matters, in one sentence: We are more connected globally than ever before, with translation skills breaking down one of the last remaining barriers: language.
Recommended Courses: Communicating Across Cultures, Developing Cross-Cultural Intelligence, InDesign: Multilingual Publishing Strategies
10. Audio Production
Why it matters, in one sentence: Similar to video, there’s been a spike in interest in podcasts and other audio digital formats recently, leading to increased demand for this skill.
Recommended Courses: Digital Audio Foundations, Audio Recording Techniques, Tips & Tricks for Modern Producers
11. Natural Language Processing
Why it matters, in one sentence: The technology behind Alexa and Google Home, everything from our cars to our light bulbs are now becoming voice-activated.
Recommended Courses: Artificial Intelligence Foundations: Thinking Machines, Creating Bots with the Microsoft Bot Framework, Part 2, NLP with Python for Machine Learning Essential Training
12. Scientific Computing
Why it matters, in one sentence: Scientific computing is generally used to solve problems with massive amounts of data to consider – a need as companies continue to collect more and more data.
Recommended Courses: Matlab Essential Training, Scala Essential Training for Data Science, Data Science Foundations: Python Scientific Stack
13. Game Development
Why it matters, in one sentence: In yet another sign of providing a better experience for digital users, the demand for those who can develop compelling online games remains strong.
Recommended Courses: 2D Game Design and Development Essential Training, Careers in the Game Industry, C# for Unity Game Development
14. Social Media Marketing
Why it matters, in one sentence: Social media continues to be a popular way to communicate with others digitally, as new platforms disrupt the market.
Recommended Courses: B2B Foundations: Social Media Marketing, Marketing on Instagram, Social Media Marketing: Social CRM
Why it matters, in one sentence: No surprise to see animation on the list, considering the surge of video traffic and the increasing prevalence of the GIF.
Recommended Courses: Animation Foundations: Fundamentals, Animation Foundations: Gesture, Maya 2018: Bifröst Fluids
16. Business Analysis
Why it matters, in one sentence: Similar to data-driven decision making, more and more companies are relying on analysts to help them guide strategic investments.
Recommended Courses: Business Analysis Foundations, Agile Requirements Foundations, Learning Digital Business Analysis
Why it matters, in one sentence: Once a dwindling skill, journalism isn’t just for journalists anymore as marketing and content teams alike vie for people who can tell compelling stories.
Recommended Courses: Ninja Writing: The Four Levels of Writing Mastery, Shane Snow on Storytelling, Editing Mastery: How to Edit Writing to Perfection
18. Digital Marketing
Why it matters, in one sentence: With the rise of digital, it’s no surprise to see digital marketing as the most in-demand marketing skill on the list.
Recommended Courses: Marketing Tips, Brand and Marketing Integration, Marketing Foundations: Growth Hacking
19. Industrial Design
Why it matters, in one sentence: The demand for those who can design something that is both practical and eloquent will never go away.
Recommended Courses: Industrial Design Foundations, Design Foundations: Prototyping and Manufacturing, Product Design: From Sketch to CAD
20. Competitive Strategies
Why it matters, in one sentence: Virtually all companies are facing increased competition, with organizations starved for people who can help them stay abreast and ahead of their competitors.
Recommended Courses: Developing a Competitive Strategy, Business Development Foundations: Researching Market and Customer Needs, Business Development Foundations
21. Customer Service Systems
Why it matters, in one sentence: In a world where one bad experience can lead to a tweet the whole world sees, consistent customer service is increasingly paramount.
Recommended Courses: Handling Abusive Customers, Customer Service in Your First Retail Job, Building Rapport with Customers
Article written by Paul Petrone and originally published on linkedin.com