It’s something we’ve been told for years: eventually, the robots will come for all of our jobs. While technological innovation takes time, a recent report by Merrill Lynch predicts that in the next 20 years, 47 percent of jobs in the U.S. are at risk for replacement. This is understandably concerning, but it’s important to note that not all careers and industries will be equally affected. Here are a few of the occupations that are much less likely to be overtaken by the machines.
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Occupations That Require Emotional Intelligence
If you work with people and your job requires a high level of emotional intelligence, such as in teaching or nursing, it’s unlikely that a robot could do it well anytime soon. Whether they involve teaching small children or providing palliative care, these roles can only be performed effectively by those who are able to connect with empathy, patience, and respect. While teachers typically earn less than the median household income of $53,657, teaching is a rewarding career path that you might consider if you’re worried about being replaced by a computer in future.
Careers Built on Creative Thinking
Any work that involves a healthy dose of creativity will likely ward off the robot job stealers for a while yet. If you’re a UX designer, an illustrator, a writer or any other kind of creative, a robot would have a hard job emulating the creativity that goes into making your work different than an auto-generated financial report. Creative jobs span a large salary range and can often appeal to those who favor flexible, freelance work that demands a versatile approach. If you love the idea of working for yourself and setting your own schedule, start brushing up your skills and get a portfolio together.
Jobs That Involve a High Level of Dexterity
When we talk about what humans can do and automated systems can’t, we often focus on creativity, emotions, and learning, but there’s also the fact that robots aren’t quite as dexterous as we are – at least, not yet. Someday, robots may be able to perform heart surgery as well as screw in a light bulb, as Evan Dashevsky puts it in PC Mag, but for now, surgeons probably don’t need to update their CVs.
Tell Us What You Think
Are you worried about being replaced by a robot in your line of work? Would you consider switching to a career path that’s less likely to be automated? Let us know in the comments, or join the discussion on Twitter.