The Future of Work and Skills

The world of work has without a doubt undergone substantial changes in the past few years and instead of the robot induced unemployment previously feared, the future of work is driven by the competing forces of innovation and automation. In this sense, technological progress has also significantly transformed gender roles. Female-led social enterprise, for example, has become vital to the new landscape of business as we’ve previously presented at London’s FutureFest just a few years back. Yet, rapid advancements in technology also play a crucial role. With increasing automation and connectivity becoming the new reality, many of our previously established notions about work may no longer apply.

Automation is now an undeniable part of the business landscape. In the UK, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) estimated that 1.5 million people are already at a high risk of having their jobs automated, with the most vulnerable roles held by women and young people. Reported estimates also indicate that in about 60% of existing occupations, at least one-third of tasks can be automated. Furthermore, it is projected that at least 10 million jobs globally could be displaced as a result of automation by 2030. This is because new technologies have demonstrated a capacity to efficiently fulfil menial and repetitive tasks once reserved for workers.

Yet, despite the grim predictions, the UK government’s Made Smarter Review found that the adoption of digital technologies could potentially add more than £450bn to UK manufacturing over the next decade, with a gain of 175,000 jobs across different sectors. For example, technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR) are now being used in businesses across the UK to make processes more efficient and create new, better-paid jobs: Online supermarket Ocado uses AI to develop a robot that can recognise 50,000 of its products and work out how to grab it with its suction arm. Airbus uses VR to improve the quality, efficiency, and speed of their aircraft assembly lines.

Even entire factories have been changed by technology, with IoT News reporting that the UK has launched its first 5G smart factory. New 5G telecommunications, combined with the Internet of Things (IoT) technology-outfitted sensors, are being used for preventative maintenance. How this works is that the increased connectivity they offer can transmit data much faster between machines, helping predict failures before they occur. IoT is changing the world, connecting everyday objects and revolutionizing every sector. Because these connected technologies will require faster and more accessible networks, Verizon Connect describes how 5G is set to fast track the IoT, taking development and business adoption to the next level. 5G is seen as the backbone of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, where emerging innovations like AI, AR, and an array of technological advancements that are still in their infancy, can be brought in to mass adoption, changing the way we work.
Thus, young professionals should note that although Forbes’ enumeration of vital skills for the future also explains how technical skills will also be crucial, so are several uniquely human skills. These range from the ability to think creatively to having the capacity for leadership and even having enough emotional intelligence to better connect with another person. Even if technology is capable of doing more and more things, these skills demonstrate that there are more than a few areas where humans are irreplaceable.

Alongside the development of disruptive business technologies, just as important is the capacity to learn and embrace change. A person with a growth mindset understands that given the fast-paced environment surrounding them, they must see change not as a burden, but rather an opportunity to grow and innovate. In short, the future of work lies in investing in the human potential, which is the main goal of our organisation in launching the InspirEngage ‘Human Investor’ programmes. By supporting companies, educational institutions, and individuals in developing and sharpening skills related to emotional intelligence, communication, and complex problem solving, we can empower this and the next generation of workers with skills that AI can’t ever replace.

In conclusion, the future of work is rapid, ongoing and one that young professionals shouldn’t fear but rather embrace. Resilience, healthy mindset and strong social skills are at the heart of ensuring we fill the gaps being created through the arrival of the fourth industrial revolution.

If you’re interested in our training and speaking programmes connected to this, email


Specially written for

By Y. Walters

January 2020

Letter to my daughter, Arielle Persia, on your 1st birthday.

It was October 2016, in a pool in Dubai (was there on business) and I was speaking to my mother saying; “so I am planning to have a baby next year… a girl, born in Mid October would be good (oldest in the year is good but our September is already pretty full witth mine and Kian’s birthdays so October would be the next best thing)… which means I will need to conceive in the third week of January… which means, I will need to come off the pill in two months. Ok great – that’s my 2017 plan sorted!” My mother shook her head and said; “Melody you can’t plan life like that!” – but guess what- turns out you can!!!! You can’t get more mid October than 16.30pm on 16th October.

Continue reading “Letter to my daughter, Arielle Persia, on your 1st birthday.”

My advice to aspiring (female) entrepreneurs- video.

Thinking about starting a business, or perhaps have launched but thinking of how to grow? In this video, I share insight and the most important lessons I have learned as a female social entrepreneur. Speaking at the launch of a new Government Equalities Office and Young Enterprise programme ‘Women Startup’. (Oh and have you ever walked into a room about to give a speech but your heel snaps…. I have!)

Want to invite Melody to speak at your next event? Email

Bullying – how I dealt with it, THAT look and my advice to anyone going through it.

Bullying – how I dealt with it

Been watching a programme here in the UK called ‘Educating Yorkshire’ following stories and struggles of the students and teachers at a secondary school. By the end of it, I was feeling angry.

I was particularly intrigued by the story of a young, beautiful and articulate girl called Hadiqa. She grew up in other countries, moved around and spoke and acted very differently to the rest of the students. At one point, when asked about her perspective of a quote, which she was explaining so nicely, the other students laughed and did THAT look.

Continue reading “Bullying – how I dealt with it, THAT look and my advice to anyone going through it.”

Social Enterprise explained in 39 seconds (video)

The InspirEngage definition of a social enterprise in brief is: ‘A business with a good cause. Can either be for-profit or not-for-profit, operating with a central social mission- reinvesting some or all of the profit into the cause.’ Social Enterprise is taking the business world by storm, with more and more people opting to launch businesses, that not only make them money but also make a difference. Video in partnership with Unltd and InspirEngage International.

Tweet & Instagram: inspirEngage / Melody_Hossaini
For all enquiries, email:

One-on-one with Melody Hossaini: a very personal interview (video)

“Melody Hossaini, Founder and CEO of InspirEngage International, started working at the age of 13, reached over 1 million people in 100 countries. She helps individuals to find their purpose, personal brand and develop essential skills to find happiness and create impact. She talks about her story- business, immigration, volunteering, motherhood and finding purpose in life through work. Her story starts as a refugee from Iran who fled to Sweden and moved to the UK when she was 13 years old. She started volunteeringand became the co-founder of the UK youth parliament. As the child of a single mother from Iran, she shares stories of life as an immigrant in the UK and how to find one’s own purpose in life.

She tweets at @Melody_Hossaini. Email for enquiries. Melody Hossaini works as a motivational speaker, skills trainer and success coach.” By Dubai.

In this very open and honest interview, I share a lot of the inside working of my brain as well as my predictions for the future.

Tweet & Instagram: inspirEngage / Melody_Hossaini
For all enquiries, email:

Advancement of young people & women in social enterprise (video)

How can we help women and young people to advance in social enterprise? Speaking on an expert panel at the Women’s Forum in Deauville October 2015, joined by Seraina Maag- President & CEO of AIG, Jane Griffiths- Company Group Chairman at Janssen (Johnson & Johnson).

Tweet & Instagram: inspirEngage / Melody_Hossaini
For all enquiries, email:

Humanising the Migration Debate: #IAmARefugee Campaign (video)

“Ex war refugee and former BBC ‘The Apprentice’ candidate Melody Hossaini speaking at St Paul’s Cathedral as part of the #IAmARefugee campaign. The I am a Refugee campaign, launched by the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI) recognises refugees including singer Rita Ora, designer and model Alek Wek, author Judith Kerr and social entrepreneur Melody Hossaini with a series of plaques which will appear on buildings across the UK during Refugee Week and in an exhibition at St Paul’s Cathedral. Aim of the campaign is to humanise the migration debate.”

Tweet & Instagram: inspirEngage / Melody_Hossaini
For all enquiries, email:

‘The I Like, I Want, I can Do Challenge’

The Power of the right Mindset.

Ever counted how many times we say the words ‘I don’t like…’ ‘I don’t want…’ and ‘he/she can’t do…’ – Here’s a challenge for everyone, for the next month (and beyond), focus your sentences on expressing what you like- if you see something nice and someone doing something well- tell them! What you want, and what YOU can do, instead of what other people can’t do. This direct expression and mindset, will then in turn attract the right energy.

Looking forward to hearing how you get on! If you already do it- then you know exactly what I’m talking about.

Tweet & Instagram: inspirEngage / Melody_Hossaini
For all enquiries, email: