The gig economy and 8 unique careers you might like

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  • One of the most difficult decisions to make is choosing one's profession.
  • The gig market is competitive and those who want to enter it must possess the necessary skills.
  • Here we list eight unique careers that you might like.


A career choice is one of the hardest choices to make. Most people are challenged in their career path, one way or another. It is our job to make the best of it, at least those who already made their choice.

It has been a tough year for many professionals but harder for gig professionals because some people want to be independent. Gig professionals are those that work part-time or freelance for companies.

The gig market can be competitive and those that would like to get into it need to have the right skills and professionalism. Dr Gillian Mooney, Dean at The Independent Institute of Education, explains that, “You have to be very clear about what it is that you offer, and you have to ensure that you are the very best you can be in that field, combined with a healthy dose of being able to run the logistics of your consulting business.”

Dr Gillian also mentions some of the careers that will be in demand over the next coming years. “Anything AI, Big Data, Internet of Things, Robotics and Encryption-related. The creative industry is also a major field in which outsourcing will continue to grow,” she says.

“For those who have a first degree, it may also be a smart investment to continue to specialise in their field by pursuing a post-graduate qualification,” she continues.

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Although there are those careers and professions that will be in high demand in the coming years, there are other interesting and unique careers that may be considered.

Ruth Jephthah, HR Manager at Oxbridge Academy, a private college that serves more than 20 000 South African distance learning students every year, provides a list of eight unique careers that may be considered.  

1. Beekeeper

“Beekeepers are agricultural workers involved in the raising of bees. As a beekeeper, you will play an essential role in ensuring the supply of products such as honey, wax and specialised beauty products. Wearing protective equipment, you’ll be tasked with ensuring that beehives remain healthy and productive. If you’re scared of bees, then this isn’t the job for you,” says Ruth.

2. Antique appraiser

If antique and valuable objects fascinate you, then being an appraiser could be the perfect job for you. “In this career, you’ll be assessing the value of a wide range of objects, discovering some real treasures along the way. As far as qualifications go, you may need some type of financial qualification before getting into antique appraising. But a lot of the job involves your own intensive research into antiques,” says Ruth.

3. Drone pilot

Drone flying is one of the most unique careers out there and in today’s modern world, drones are used for several purposes. According to Ruth, these range from land surveillance to photography and videography, search and rescue missions and even deliveries.

4. Bodyguard

This job certainly requires some bravery and you’ll probably need the right physical attributes too. “A qualification in security will set you up for a job in this field,” says Ruth.

5. Food critic

Imagine being able to eat at top-class restaurants for a living! Food critics get to do just this, dining out at glitzy establishments, assessing the quality of the food and experience on offer. Ruth says, “Qualifications in hospitality and writing will therefore prepare you for a job as a food critic.”

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6. Jewellery designer

Jewellery design is the perfect career choice if you’re a creative, artistic person who loves the beauty of jewellery. “As a jewellery designer, you’ll plan the style and pattern of jewellery, including necklaces, rings, bracelets and other pieces,” she says.

 7. Aircraft marshaller

Aircraft marshallers are responsible for safely guiding aeroplanes and helicopters before departure and after landing. “This involves using a variety of body and paddle signals to communicate with the pilot and getting them safely in and out of parking bays,” says Ruth.

8. Snake handler

While many people get shivers at the mere thought of a snake, others have a fondness for these unique creatures. Ruth says, “If you’re one of these people, then you could consider a career as a snake handler. These brave souls are tasked with removing snakes from areas such as houses or workplaces and they may also work at places such as reptile parks. To become a snake handler, you need to take part in a snake handling course.”  

Sources: Oxbridge AcademyThe Independent Institute of Education

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