Know your Slashie from your Uberslashie

Job types which thrive in the digital disruption

Paul McCarthy really likes to know how things work. The boy who spent time (circa 1980s) pulling apart and programming home computers was a strong indication of the man to come – an online business expert, tech entrepreneur and strategist who’s worked for the likes of IBM, Sirca and State Government.

Photo by neerav Bhatt

Photo by neerav Bhatt

A while back, when Paul was asked if there were any good reads explaining the evolution and impact of digital disruption, he bypassed the mundane “you should check Amazon” response and instead, sat down and wrote the book ‘Online Gravity’.

Chapter Seven, ‘Online Gravity Loves Renaissance Talent’, looks at how workers are now shifting away from rigid employment specialisation and branching out into a more collaborative, creative and open minded careers.


One expression of this is the call for people with T-shaped skills:

·         The vertical bar represents a depth of skills and experience (usually tech related)

·         The horizontal bar is the ability to have a broad but shallow understanding of many different fields, positioning these people to communicate and collaborate with experts across different areas.


Versatile hybrids who resist being defined by a single occupation or job title. The ‘slashie’ approach signals a portfolio of interests, capabilities and responsibilities.

"You consider me the best actor slash model...and not the other way around".

Global passionistas and uberslashies

The slashies who hit the rarefied air where they are able to channel their interests, passions and tech savvy into a global business. Some of the big brand results to emerge in this field include Houzz (interior design), Pinterest (design inspiration), SoundCloud (sound), Spotify (music) and Goodreads (books).

Nocturnal Moonlighters

The rise of the global marketplace for online freelance talent such as Freelancer and Upwork has accelerated the slashie phenomenon, meaning that people can work in their regular job while moonlighting in specialised work of their choosing – online. This even extends to online shop fronts such as Etsy and Shopify, making it easy for people to manage their retail business on the side.