How innovation drives job creation

Regarding job creation, innovation is almost always the driving force. Whether it’s a new way to make or sell products in an existing market or the invention of an entirely new product or service altogether, innovative thought can create new jobs, new business sectors, and entire industries.

Innovative ideas bring jobs

In the US, job creation is a much-discussed topic. Everyone from business leaders, unions and workers to politicians and the leaders of the Federal Reserve have their opinion on how the country needs to create more work. This makes sense as many factors influence employment figures yearly, such as global economic conditions, interest rates, and consumer spending power. In a highly competitive world, it is only through creating new ideas and driving business forward that a country or economy can survive and thrive.

For a job to exist, first, you need a product or a service to create and a way to develop it. In addition, the client’s or customer’s needs and expectations are forever in flux. This is why we rely on entrepreneurs to drive job creation through developing and commercializing something new and groundbreaking.

Sometimes, they find a different way to deliver the same product. For instance, in the past, ideas such as mail ordering and door-to-door sales met the need to make purchases without traveling. This created new positions of work while working with familiar products. In much the same way today, Netflix and other streaming services have found a far more convenient and flexible method of watching movies and TV shows, leading to a whole new industry.

Brand-new industries

In other cases, of course, it is a brand-new product that sets the standard and requires new people and new expertise. From the invention of the car to the computer or the mobile phone, there are countless examples of innovations that have caused substantial new industries to spring up, which, in many cases, employ millions of people and generate billions of dollars in revenue.

Often, however, these new inventions are feared as “job killers” that will wipe out entire industries. Many greeted the locomotive with terror. Some predicted that the internet would lead to mass unemployment and countless other problems. Yet, in the end, most of the jobs we have today would be unimaginable without them, and companies like Google and Apple are not only substantial economic powerhouses but also provide jobs for people all over the world in a wide variety of areas.

The cycle of innovation

Of course, this creation also requires destruction. Often, there will be inevitable job losses in the old system — there is little business for horse and cart drivers these days, after all. However, it is also that cycle of disruption, destruction, and creation that ensures that the overall economy is able to adapt to change and find new solutions.

In a global economy, standing still is the most dangerous choice. It may seem like a safe option in the short term, but sooner or later, a stagnant business environment will start to flounder. Just take the field of marketing and communication. Any business that has tried to ignore the potential and power of social media marketing in the past will have either spent a decade playing catch-up or gone under. In many cases, the wave is so overwhelmingly strong that companies either must get on for the ride while still relying on their fundamental skills or simply call it a day.

Spotting the gap

Likely, the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) will create a similar process of new jobs and new fields of expertise that we could never have predicted. While many more giant multinationals struggle to understand how to make AI work for them, a new generation of entrepreneurs is forming agile, fast-thinking companies that can exploit their potential. Martin van Blerk, for example, is the entrepreneur who founded Caliber, a talent platform powered by AI to help streamline the recruitment process for both job seekers and employers. The formation of Caliber demonstrates that entrepreneurship plays a role in job creation. The company itself will require employees in addition to helping others find jobs.

Innovation is key to growth

In the future, we can expect to see other innovative, pace-setting entrepreneurs and startups emerge in the field of AI that will help drive its development and ultimately create another new wave of exciting jobs and expertise. When things move this fast, standing still is akin to swimming backward and can only end badly. Instead, every country needs both true innovators with the courage to try new ideas and put them out on the market and a workforce with flexibility, open-mindedness and determination to help them succeed.

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