A Sea Change Economy

The economy isn’t going to straighten out for some time. I’m getting the sense that the general public is waking up to that realization as well. For awhile it was, “this is a bad patch, but it’ll turn any month now.” And each month looks like the one before it, just a little less ugly. And I’m not sure if its less ugly because of the numbers or because everyone is getting used to it. I’ll take a look and see how my predictions have worked out and post a post-mortem.

A study came out from a few professors at Rutgers, James Hughes and Joseph Seneca which states the economy will recoup the job losses in 2017. That seems absurd, but when you think about the numbers, it isn’t. Here are the numbers:

  • 7.1 million private-sector jobs since the recession began in December 2007
  • Need to add 2.15 million jobs a year to make up the jobs deficit by 2017 (the deficit also counts the normal number of jobs needed for those that are entering the work force every year and the estimates for the rest of 2009)

Other stats:

  • November 2001 to December 2007 added 6.2 million private-sector jobs, or 1.0 million a year
  • 21.5 million private-sector jobs during the expansion from March 1991 to March 2001, or 2.15 million a year
  • 18.4 million private-sector jobs during the economic expansion from
    November 1982 to July 1990, or 2.4 million jobs a year

These numbers indicate we are in a sea change era. Lately I’ve been advocating for those that are not employed or even those that are, to look for new methods for interacting with the job market. Evaluate what you offer, not just to an employer, but to the marketplace as a whole.

Dreaming Big, Risk, Failure, and other Thoughts

My last entry was about Risk. A few days have past and I realized that it wasn’t really about risk but about dreams and the willingness to go after them. My perception changed when I ran across a story on Wired.com about Dallas Clayton and a book he wrote for his son called Awesomebook.

Awesome Book Tour from Dallas Clayton on Vimeo.

I really like the idea of big dreams, but I have some other thoughts on the topic that I’ve hit on throughout the course of this blog.

The first is acceptance of failure. To dream big and take that risk you have to be OK with failure. Its because failure is part of the process. Along the way there are going to be opportunities for learning experiences and failure is a great teacher.

The second is the idea of Results Only Work Environment or ROWE. We are in an age where high unemployment is likely, almost to the point that those who are unemployed need to rethink their approach to income. I’m thinking that people need to reinvest in themselves and find ways to create something for the marketplace.

The third is the idea of failing fast. I already mentioned the usefulness of failure, but it must be digested quickly. Fortune.com does a postcard segment and one of the people who wrote in was the CEO of Yahoo, Carol Bartz. One of the lessons she talks about is the failing fast mentality.

And Fourth is about golf. I’ve written about golf before, but to be a good putter you have to visualize the success. Positive thoughts lead to success some of the time and negative thoughts leads to failure every time. And winning is what you are trying to do, but playing, or the journey, is always worth it.