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The Best of All Worlds: Don’t Get Boxed In

– Contributed content –

Gray boxes

(Ricardo Gomez Angel, Unsplash)

26 January 2018. It was once accepted that you did your job and that was that. Completing a project or assignment meant that when it was finished, you passed it along to whoever dealt with it next, and this continued until the product or service was ready to release to the public.

And this worked, for a time. But as industry grew and grew and expanded first nationwide and then worldwide, it was deemed necessary not to put all your eggs in one basket. As the future became closer and closer to reality, the importance of being skilled in more than one area became all the more apparent.

Following this worldwide influence, it became essential to have departments that could deal with different aspects of production and development, so businesses didn’t need to pay others to complete the work for them. From there, huge companies were built, and they evolved and became established in all areas.

In this day and age, finding solutions to streamlining production of anything became a necessity. You could be an expert in your field and deemed valuable as anybody else, but those who are experts in a wide range of disciplines and sectors will always be more desirable. In a world where innovation can be achieved everywhere, it is crucial not to get boxed in. Despite some beliefs that you can’t have the best of both worlds, the truth is that you can.

Skills upon skills

The phrase ‘Jack of all trades, master of none’ is something that most people construe to be a negative assumption of someone’s abilities. They might look at you trying to spread your knowledge so far that have nothing but a fundamental understanding of some of the planet’s most difficult concepts.

However, with the rise of the information age, where people can learn anything they so please at the touch of a button being a Jack of all trades has shifted from the negative to something more positive.

Having multiple skills allows you to improve on said skills. It also opens avenues for exploring different opportunities in the future. Even if you don’t consider yourself multi-skilled, finding ways to become qualified in areas outside of your industry has the potential to breed greater success.

One of these skills is business administration, this is a broad term, though, and you may be wonder ‘what are the benefits of studying Business Administration?’  The fact is that as business and careers have evolved, there is much more overlap than there once was. What will assist in one industry will no doubt come of use in an entirely unrelated one, also.

Collaboration is key

The need for collaboration in all areas of life is often ignored. Too often do you see entrepreneurs from places outside of Silicon Valley claim that their region – be it the Midwest or the UK or Toronto – is going to topple the monopoly held by the west coast and become the place to be for tech, science, or business.

And while competition is an excellent motivator, and everyone wants to be the one who cracks some secret of the universe, do these people ever wonder what it might be like if they pooled their knowledge together to solve all the problems of the world?

There is, of course, the risk of too many cooks and all that, which could be what these companies have in mind when striving towards more significant innovation. However, seeing each other as colleagues and not necessarily rivals could do wonders for accelerating this change.

Organizations such as startup accelerators and incubators demonstrate some of this collaboration by assisting small businesses to get a foothold in their industry and work towards expansion. This has proven successful in the past and looks to continue. Now only if some of the big boys and girls could feel the same way about so-called competitors.

Innovation helps thrive

Innovation is something that is continuously being discussed in everything from government to technology to science to automation. Without innovation, the world will do naught but stagnate, and these people who were responsible for innovating will cease to try changing the world, and existing knowledge will struggle to survive and be passed on.

That all seems a bit apocalyptic, doesn’t it? But the point is that prosperous communities and nations and industries are only successful because of consistent striving for innovation. Even if we find ways to solve world hunger or fully-functioning autonomous vehicles, the work should not stop there.

This is because, there must be innovation on top of innovation. It is no good resting on your laurels and assuming that the work is done, and the work is never truly done, but instead, it becomes easier, for a time.

At least, it becomes easier for a time until it doesn’t, but isn’t that the point? Humanity is at its best when faced with challenges and so never accepting work as complete, always considering that there are still things to improve will further drive innovation and avoid getting stuck in some technological rut where we concede that there is perhaps no much more that can be done.

Strange bedfellows

Further ways to avoid getting boxed in to any one industry is to consider working alongside businesses in other sectors that would perhaps not be deemed to go hand in hand in the past.

The idea of strange bedfellows can often prove to be more fruitful than working alongside a company that has substantial knowledge of the industry. Exploring such a possibility can prove highly beneficial for both you and whoever you choose to partner with, as it allows two completely alien perspectives to provide their insight into how something should or shouldn’t be done.

The idea of collaborating with an independent business or organization can show you how an outsider may perceive the work being done, what they feel is necessary for the improvement and future, as well as allow you to do the same thing when tasked with providing your input on the other end of the spectrum.

This has proven popular in sectors such as green technology, where McDonald’s and Greenpeace worked together to create a more sustainable solution to protecting the Amazon rain forests. Furthermore, banks and environmental organizations have recently been reported to be working side by side to reduce lending towards programs that produced high carbon emissions.

Embracing this sort of change is essential to not only providing better communication between formerly isolated industries but the rest of the world as a whole. Sharing knowledge that you previously may not have been privy to will only help broaden your horizons and understanding of what happens outside of your business, science, or tech bubble. It may feel strange at first, but the benefits are not to ignored or neglected.

Best of all worlds

Exploring how you and your business or organization can spread its influence as far as possible will prove beneficial in the long run for everyone involved, and even some of those not involved.

We are living in an interconnected world, and so neglecting to take advantage of such profitable opportunities can only prove ruinous as you and they will miss out on vital collaboration and risks that are sure to pay dividends if approached and organized correctly.

Furthermore, the lines between business, science, mathematics, and more have become so blurred that there is just no need for any more separation. Everyone can find benefits in others’ specialties, and so embracing these specialties, instead of rejecting and competing, will only lead to further branches spreading out in the future. If you can achieve the best of all worlds, then what is stopping you?

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