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Lets Fix the Stupid Job Crisis Ourselves


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Lets Fix the Stupid Job Crisis Ourselves

  1. 1. Let’s fix thestupid job crisis ourselves. Seriously, this is getting on my nerves. by Tony Bacigalupo
  2. 2. First: Whatthe hell isgoing on?
  3. 3. The social contractbetween employers and employees is broken. The deal used to work like this: go to school, work hard, do the work you’re given. In exchange, you’ll receive security in the form of a full-time salaried job. People have gone to school. People have worked hard. But the security isn’t there anymore.
  4. 4. Why did that happen?There are a lot of reasons. Outsourcing. Automation. Technological advances. Economic shifts. Working a full-time job in one location for one employer for forever is rapidly losing its place as the de facto way of approaching employment. A lot of people still behave like that’s the case, but it’s pretty clear that’s not how it works anymore.
  5. 5. So what’s the result?
  6. 6. Half of all college graduates can’t find work.And they have a lot of debt to pay off, which makes the whole thing a lot more scary.
  7. 7. Boomers are workingpast what used to be retirement age Whether by necessity, or because they just want to keep doing what they’re doing, Boomers want to stay in the workforce.
  8. 8. Lots of people areworking jobs they can’t stand.
  9. 9. Lots of people are working, but not making enough.
  10. 10. Lots of peopleare out of work altogether.
  11. 11. This sucks.
  12. 12. So what canwe do about it?
  13. 13. I see three options:
  14. 14. 1. Wait for thegovernment to fix it for us This option does not excite me.
  15. 15. 2. Wait for the bigemployers to fix it for us This option does not excite me.
  16. 16. 3. Fix this thing ourselves. This option excites me.
  17. 17. Awesome, good call. Now what could wepossibly do to solve this thing ourselves?
  18. 18. Let’s look at what we have to work with.
  19. 19. Let’s say this bar represents the workforce.
  20. 20. This group represents traditional, full-time employees. At the extreme left is the 30 year veteran of one company: the quintessential employee.
  21. 21. This group represents peoplebuilding & running high-growth business ventures. CEOs. Founders. People who employ, or aspire to employ,the group on the other side of the bar. At the extreme right end of the spectrum is... let’s say it’s Mark Zuckerberg.
  22. 22. I should note that this is not drawn to scale... yet.Help me out with better numbers if you have them.
  23. 23. In between are people who are... somewhere in between. Contractors. Freelancers. Small business owners. People who don’t easily fall into the other two groups.
  24. 24. These are people who are notdependent on a single employer, nor are they dependent on investors or shareholders.
  25. 25. So let’s call these people Independents.
  26. 26. Employees, Independents, and CEOs. Cool.
  27. 27. Most talk about job creation focuses on the left side of thespectrum. Getting people back to work. Obvious, right?
  28. 28. But that’s not super useful to us,because there’s not much we can do ourselves to address that. We can’t will businesses into hiring again.
  29. 29. A lot of attention is focused onthe right side of the spectrum. The logic is compelling: create more jobs by creating more job creators! More startups = more jobs. Yes?
  30. 30. That’s cool. I dig it.
  31. 31. Except there’s a problem.
  32. 32. Only a tiny fraction of people will ever succeed in building high- growth businesses.
  33. 33. The number of people who succeed in building scalebusinesses doesn’t change much, despite tons of efforts.
  34. 34. Building a growth ventureis just not something most of us are going to do.
  35. 35. So should the rest of us wait on the sidelines until the future Zuckerbergs ofthe world decide to show themselves and start employing us?
  36. 36. NO.
  37. 37. What should we do, then?
  38. 38. Let’s take another look at that spectrum. What haven’t we covered yet?
  39. 39. How about these folks in the middle? What’s their story?We don’t hear much about them in the news. Let’s break it down a little further and see what we find.
  40. 40. These folks on the left side of thespectrum service the traditional employers, just in a more transient capacity. This group is growing drastically.
  41. 41. These folks on the right side of the group are running small and medium sized businesses.These businesses make money by providing goods and services. They don’t make billions or employ thousands, but they do make enough to employ the people they need to sustain themselves. This group is growing too.
  42. 42. So this whole Independentworkforce is growing. Why?
  43. 43. Work is increasingly done on the internet.That’s increasingly something that can be done anywhere. So things like telecommuting and contracting becomemore practical, while working full-time in one designated place becomes less necessary.
  44. 44. The internet happens to be a greatplace to make money building, selling, and generally doing stuff.So the line between doing business and starting abusiness is getting blurrier. Who isn’t engaging insome kind of commerce online these days, right?
  45. 45. These people are self-reliant. They are making money doing stuff.They are using readily available technology. That sounds like a good start!
  46. 46. Independent workers need not wait for an employer to hire them or an investor to back them.
  47. 47. That means, if you are an independent,you have the ability to CREATE value by doing the work you do.
  48. 48. (From what I understand, offering something of value and being compensated accordingly is sort ofhow an economy is supposed to work in the first place.)
  49. 49. So when you get people to pay you for somethingthat you build or offer yourself, you happen to also be helping to strengthen the economy. That sounds pretty good!So what’s stopping more people from doing this?
  50. 50. The first challenge is awareness.People aren’t used to thinking of an independent path as a viable option.
  51. 51. The second challenge is scariness. Working for yourself means you don’t enjoy thesupport systems you’d expect in a traditional job.It also means you’re responsible. For everything. That’s really scary.
  52. 52. The third challenge is support. If you want to get a job or start a growth business,there are tons of systems designed to shepherd you through the necessary processes. But to hack it on your own? Not so much.
  53. 53. What would happen if we started to try tackling these issues?
  54. 54. Maybe, just maybe, we could start creating jobs for ourselves. And each other.
  55. 55. In fact, it’s already begun. Newcommunities of independents are emerging everywhere. These would be perfect starting pointsfor people to gather and work on these things together. (They’re called coworking spaces.)
  56. 56. So we have a way of looking at work that empowers people to to create value for themselves on terms they define. We have the beginnings of a local support system. We have a decent idea of what’s holding it back.
  57. 57. Is it possible to inspire enoughpeople to hire themselves to put a serious dent in the job crisis?
  58. 58. I believe it is.
  59. 59. It doesn’t have to be a big dealat the beginning. It can start as a side project or hobby.
  60. 60. It doesn’t have to work for everyone.It doesn’t have to work for most people.
  61. 61. But it could workfor a lot of people. It’s a start.Maybe a good start.
  62. 62. It would be a shame tospend our short time on this planet worrying about jobs we don’t want.
  63. 63. We can think of our work as something more.
  64. 64. We can think of our work asnot just a necessary drudgeryto be avoided, but something to be celebrated.
  65. 65. This isn’t a comprehensive plan. It’s mostly just an idea. A starting point.Challenge it. Disagree with it. But let’s talk about it.
  66. 66. Let’s build better ways to help ourselves and each other.
  67. 67. Join a local Meetup group or coworking community. If one that fits your needs doesn’t exist, find others whofeel the same way and start one.
  68. 68. These problems aren’t going to solve themselves.These problems get solved when we solve them.
  69. 69. Work is not a job we get. Work is a thing we do.
  70. 70. So let’s get to work!
  71. 71. Link to this and References: Get email updates:
  72. 72. “I have some time, and if I use it well, it will be enough.” - Amit Gupta Entrepreneur, Leukemia survivor, and inspiration to many