In our legal documents, the word “relevant” is often used to emphasise what is important and what needs to be prioritised. The dictionary defines the word as having 'significant and demonstrable bearing on the matter at hand'. Documents, clauses, circumstances, and individuals can be relevant, but my question today is: How relevant are are people and employees in a fast-changing world?

It is often said: Be relevant or fade away. Employers have higher expectations of their employees than they did in the past. Digital transformation isn't a choice anymore for enterprises, and employees must be aware of the latest technology trends to stay relevant.

Staff have the tools, but they should know how to use them. If someone is struggling with the latest operating system or the latest version of the software that’s vital to their field, now is the time to learn how to use it properly. Join an online class or ask for training at your current workplace.

Attend trade shows and attend seminars and conferences specific to your discipline. Listen to experts and find out what the competitors are doing. Are they more successful? If they are, find out what they are doing differently.

As technology changes, businesses must keep pace as well. Make sure that the portfolio of offerings to clients is consistent with their current needs. Looking at the strong impact of social media, it is observed by McKinsey Global Institute that 72 per cent of companies have a social media presence.

Employees, therefore, need to maintain profiles on social media which is also a great way to stay in touch with clients and customers. It allows users to express concerns, ask questions, and even offer praise for great work. Make sure to have a visible and professionally active presence on social media and keep profiles updated. Recruiters often ask for your social media handles to assess your profile to confirm if you fit the role.

Earlier, when we thought of lawyers, we could only think of the courtrooms. Now, litigators are a segment of the legal profession, with in-house lawyers and corporate lawyers forming a large part of the profession.

Communication skills are imperative in a globalised workplace. With the workforce distributed across the globe, one may have to work with people of different cultural backgrounds. In such cases, it is important to understand the cultural sensitivities of co-workers or clients and tailor communication accordingly.

Often, disagreements arise but deal with them professionally; agree to disagree, explain things clearly, and speak to management in a way they understand. There is little point in having all the wisdom of the world when it is hard to communicate it to others.

Staying relevant is important for business and social resilience. So reinvention both personally and professionally is vital. At the business level, keep innovating and offering new products to customers.

On the personal front, being and staying relevant gives the individual immense satisfaction and adds value to what he or she does.

- Shilpa Bhasin Mehra is an independent legal consultant based in Dubai

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