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PwC

"Why human skills are an absolute on the resume of any digital leader"

Below is an article originally written by Sarah McEneaney, Digital Talent Leader at PowerToFly Partner PwC. Go to PwC's page on PowerToFly to see their open positions and learn more.

One of the questions I hear most often from graduates and other emerging leaders is "if I pursue this career, will a robot take my job?" The short answer is "no". The longer answer can be a bit more complicated. While certain tasks may be more suited for automation, very few entire career paths are likely to be eliminated. If anything, the advances in technology provide opportunities: to enhance insights, to expand the reach of important services, and--most exciting--to focus on more enriching work while letting a robot do some of the less interesting things, quickly and more consistently.

And, while gaining technology skills and a wide digital acumen should simply be known for competing in the world of work, today and going forward, it's important not to lose sight of the fact that the way to truly future-proof your career is to acquire and nurture skills that robots simply can't do. Those are skills that require high-level human cognitive and emotional processing. Things like design, storytelling, empathy for the user, leading and inspiring through change--these are skills that the word "robot" doesn't even connote. The best part? It's never too early in your career to learn these skills, or to keep practicing them over time in all types of situations.

At PwC, we have set the expectation for all 55,000 of our workforce to upskill in these various elements of human-centered design, so that we can approach problem-solving with the right stakeholders, customers and consumers in mind. As our people gain skills in data-driven storytelling, design thinking, and agile project management, and demonstrate increased proficiency, they are awarded digital badges.

You can get started today. Whether it's in taking formal classes in any of these areas, or availing of any of the myriad free resources available online (including PwC's Digital Fitness App), don't wait to get ahead. Technology plus human skills can be a powerful combination and one that increases access and opportunities for people of all backgrounds. It doesn't require expensive formal education and the grassroots communities which exist around these topics include people from all walks of life all over the world. Community-based and social learning can be a game changer for establishing a network and helping develop your voice in this space.

Regardless of your background or your career goals, there may be very few avenues worth pursuing that won't benefit from human-centered skills. And it's not just consumer products that need to consider the end user. From enterprise products to healthcare to transportation and more, every business has customers and consumers, whose input is critical and should be at the forefront of technology developments and subsequent iterations. I am inspired by the upcoming students and professionals, who are taking this approach to heart, realizing that you don't need authority in the traditional sense to have an influence and impact. And, thanks to them, I am tremendously hopeful for the future of our planet, society and our workforces.

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How These Companies Are Celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

According to a recent study, anti-Asian hate crimes have risen 150% since the pandemic started. But these acts of violence are not new — they are part of a much larger history of anti-Asian racism and violence in the U.S.

That makes celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month (which was named a month-long celebration in May by Congress in 1992 "to coincide with two important milestones in Asian/Pacific American history: the arrival in the United States of the first Japanese immigrants on May 7, 1843 and contributions of Chinese workers to the building of the transcontinental railroad, completed May 10, 1869") this year all the more important.

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Relativity

How Relativity’s Monika Wąż Conquered Fear to Find Her Dream Career

There's a phrase in her native Polish that Monika Wąż reminds herself of each day: "If you don't learn, you're just going backward."

The Associate Product Manager at legal and compliance technology company Relativity says she would believe in a growth-centered approach to work even if she wasn't in the tech field, but that it's especially important because she is.

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Autodesk, Inc.

How Embracing What She Doesn’t Know Led Autodesk’s Arezoo Riahi to a Fulfilling Career in DEI

Arezoo Riahi isn't a big fan of the "fake it till you make it" approach. She'd rather ask for the help she needs and learn from it.

Autodesk's Director of Diversity and Belonging joined the design software company from the nonprofit world after a long career in connecting people from different cultures. While her work had been deeply rooted in DEI values, there were certain parts of the strategy-building aspects to her new role that she wasn't sure about.

"If you know it, show up like you know it. If you don't know it, you shouldn't fake it. And Autodesk didn't shame me for not knowing everything. They helped me, and the entire team, by providing the resources that we needed, bringing in outside expertise to help teach us when we were in new territory," says Arezoo, who has been at Autodesk for three years now, during which she's been promoted twice into her current role.

We sat down with Arezoo to hear more about her path into DEI work, what she thinks the future of that work must include, and what advice she has for women looking to build fulfilling careers, from knowing what you don't know and beyond.

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Behind-the-Scenes: Sales Interview Process at LogMeIn

Get an inside look at the interview process for sales roles at LogMeIn, one of the largest SaaS companies providing remote work technology, from Michael Gagnon, Senior Manager of Corporate Account Executive Sales.

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Procore Technologies Inc

How Being an Open Member of the LGBTQIA+ Community Has Helped Procore’s Alex Zinik Overcome Imposter Syndrome at Work

Alex Zinik wasn't surprised that she started her career in education—she decided she would become a teacher when she was just in third grade.

She was surprised while working as a paraeducator in the school system and preparing to become a special education teacher, she discovered that it didn't feel quite right. "I didn't know if that's what I really wanted to do," she recalls.

So a friend suggested she take a job during her off summers at construction software company Procore. She thought this would be the perfect opportunity to try out this new challenge, and if she needed to, she could go back to the school district once the summer was over.

"Five summers later, I'm still here!" she says, smiling. "And I see myself here for many more years. I just fell in love with the company, the culture, and with the career growth opportunities I was presented with."

As part of our Pride month celebrations, Alex, currently the Senior Executive Assistant to the CEO at Procore, sat down with us to share how a common fear—the fear of being found out—underlay the imposter syndrome she felt when pivoting to an industry in which she lacked experience, and the anxiety she often felt before coming out to her friends and family about her sexuality.

Read on for her insight on overcoming negative thought patterns, being yourself, and paying it forward.

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