From workplace demographics to the norms for when and where work happens, the past decade has brought significant change to the nature of work—and more is on the horizon.

In “The Four Trends that Will Change the Way We Work by 2021” on Fast Company, Upwork CEO Stephane Kasriel explains four of these emerging work trends and what they’ll mean for professionals and organizations.

  • “Second-tier cities” will claim their place. Urban centers like New York City, San Francisco, Paris, and Tokyo have long stood as beacons of opportunity—but that’s no longer optimal or even necessary. Cities like Denver and Austin are quickly becoming new hubs: “It’s just cheaper to live and do business there,” Kasriel said. Plus, he added, “technology is making it far easier for people to live in places other than the largest hubs and still have access to jobs they otherwise wouldn’t.”
  • Nanodegrees and nanojobs will become more common. The half-life of a skill is so short that Kasriel says workers can no longer specialize for life in only one thing. This is changing both the way we learn and the way we work. “If the need for greater specialized expertise is growing, it’s at least partly because the demand for those skills is changing more rapidly than ever,” he said.
  • Job seekers will be choosier. For various reasons, many people are looking for more than a big salary or fancy perks; they want work that aligns with their values, lifestyles, and goals. “Ultimately, companies will need to get used to the idea that professional growth means more than simply growth in income,” Kasriel explained.
  • The expansion of entrepreneurship. Kasriel says there’s a “growing segment of people who are turning into entrepreneurs in a different sense—without having a big idea or creating a product. Rather than founding a startup, they’re simply working independently as freelancers or by teaming up with one another.”

To learn more, read Kasriel’s full article on Fast Company.