My job didn’t exist!

Future-proof skills, portfolio careers… these are jobs’ buzz phrases, but when employers talk about Generation Z, what do they mean when they say, ‘young people need to prepare for careers that don’t exist…’ does it actually make sense?

Dr Lisette Johnston, Head of School at ScreenSpace thinks it does, she said:  “These days having a career doesn't always mean being in the same job. 

“Increasingly we are seeing people have portfolio careers where they might work in one area, say journalism, then move to PR or have their own company on the side, or take their expertise into a different field altogether. 

“That is why college and university courses need to give strong practical skills but also help people with soft and transferrable skills such as critical thinking, being able to network, pitch ideas and present. 

We interviewed six people who are doing jobs that really didn’t exist a few years ago, so they could never have prepared through school, or college or even university to do them…

Name: Hannah Whitton               

 
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Job title: YouTuber, Broadcaster, Author

Company: I’m freelance 

What do you actually do?

I create weekly YouTube videos, write weekly blog posts, write books, create podcasts, appear on TV and radio, speak at events. 

What skills / qualifications do you need to have to do your job? 

No qualifications but skills-wise (learned on the job): filming, editing, presenting, writing, research, time/people/money management and many more.  

Name: Julian Zegelman                

 
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Job title: Cryptocurrency Law Attorney

Company: Velton Zegelman PC

What do you actually do? 

I represent companies involved in various aspects of the cryptocurrency and blockchain technology industry - bitcoin and altcoin miners, cryptocurrency exchanges, ICO issuers, crypto hedge funds and others. I have even shared comments on proposed official legislation to several small countries interested in attracting cryptocurrency companies to their jurisdictions. 

What skills / qualifications do you need to have to do your job?

In 2014 the first cryptocurrency client walked through the door - at first I thought it was a fad that would pass in a matter of months. Then I was knocked off my feet by the scale of these opportunities. Many areas of cryptocurrency law are being formulated as we speak. So, I’d say knowledge of corporate and securities law, intellectual property law and curiosity for emerging technology. Also a tolerance for risk and patience. 

Name: Hélène-Marie t’Kint                   

 
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Job title: Team Happiness Manager

Company: Proxyclick

What do you actually do?

Being a Team Happiness Manager is all about ‘humanising’ people – too often this can get lost and replaced with simply a means to a profitable end. Often, it can be the little things that mean so much to people and make them feel valued. I work extremely closely with the team to understand their needs and how the company can create the most productive and enjoyable experience for them. 

What skills / qualifications do you need to have to do your job

This job requires you to be social, patient, creative, organised, flexible and human. This job has a very human aspect that I love. I love people, I love understanding how they work, their interests and help accordingly where I can.

Name: Jessica Oram                  

 
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Job Title: Social & Content Manager

Company: Maxwell Scott

What do you actually do?

I manage the brand's social and content strategies - from video to photography and blog management to point of sale (POS) in store. I organise and plan all content for Maxwell Scott's social media platforms, from Instagram to LinkedIn, ensuring all content is aligned with the brand and visually appealing and inspiring for the consumer. 

It’s my job to tell the story of Maxwell Scott - whether that's through video or an article.

Skills/qualifications?

You need to be incredibly creative and have a natural motivation for wanting to inspire people. You need impeccable written and grammar skills as well as an acute understanding of language and copywriting in general. Most importantly, you must have an innovative mind that is constantly thinking up new ideas. 

Name: João Pela,               

 
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Job title: Senior data scientist

Company: Rotageek

What do you actually do?

I design and create algorithms that have the intelligence to solve problems automatically. The data science behind our software simply enables management to consider more variables than a human brain can process.   

What skills / qualifications do you need to have to do your job?

An inquisitive mind and a good understanding of how algorithms can be designed and implemented. Knowing how to handle data and extract insights and derive conclusions are also top required skills.

Typically, the people who tend to succeed have studied degrees with science-heavy curricula, like maths or physics, but It is not uncommon to find data scientists with backgrounds in medicine, software development or humanities to name a few.

Name: Maxine Mawhinney                     

 
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Job title: Journalist and broadcaster

Company: Freelance

What do you actually do?

Last month I launched my new interview programme ‘The Moment with Maxine Mawhinney’ – on YouTube. I’ve gone digital! It offers freedom, a potential global audience and a chance for me to make a programme that is truly mine.

What skills / qualifications do you need to have to do your job

I did the NCTJ course in Belfast followed by an apprenticeship at my local paper. From there into broadcasting via the BBC.

What makes ‘The Moment’ work are those same skills that I have used for my whole career – I have always worked in what would be described as traditional media – newspapers and terrestrial broadcasters.  My skills are interviewing, probing, storytelling, and writing.

Current and future journalists have an array of technology available to them – but if they don’t know how to ask questions, how to tell a story, how to engage and sustain an audience that audience will ignore you and click through to the next item.

Dr Johnston added:  “You might never want to be a YouTuber, but learning how to speak to an audience, whether it's down the barrel of a camera lens, in a classroom or a boardroom, is hugely important, as is being proactive and having the ability to listen.”

ScreenSpace is a partnership between MetFilm School and the University of West London and offers a BA  (Hons) in Content, Media and Film Production