The New Job Market

Adam Career 1 Comment

A lot of food for thought in the new Aeon article titled The Quitting Economy. It basically better explains everything I’ve thought about the new job market, where companies don’t value long-term employees, so employees must value themselves first.

A favorite quote,

In a society where market rules rule, the only way for an employee to know her value is to look for another job and, if she finds one, usually to quit.

If you are a white-collar worker, it is simply rational to view yourself first and foremost as a job quitter – someone who takes a job for a certain amount of time when the best outcome is that you quit for another job


Comments 1

  1. JayCeezy

    Adam, great share! Really enjoyed reading this take by Ilana Gershon, and her explanation/reasons behind this approach to work. She notes the concept of being ‘The CEO of Me’ and being ‘your own brand’ as the result of changing employment environments when Communism failed in the early ’90s, and Capitalist economic theory was proven right, citing Hayek, Freidman and a bunch of other egghead economists blah, blah, blah.

    Looking back on my own worklife from the early ’80s (when Unemployment was 10.8%!), it has always been a struggle for most everyone but the superstars. And I consider myself a student, not of classical economists, but best-selling pop-culture business books by people like Tom Peters (who used ‘the CEO of Me’ in the ’90s) and Stephen Pollan (‘Die Broke’ and ‘Live Rich’).

    Pollan, in particular, introduced some updated ideas into the culture; his book has an “Org Chart”, making fun of the traditional pyramid, showing You at the center and a bunch of arrows pointing outward in all directions to boss, colleague, client/customer, etc. His advice was to worry about your immediate situation, and to get-and-keep a job. He predicted very lean times, where people would be losing their jobs and new employees would be rotated in at much lower wages. I’ve observed this myself.

    I’m not sure ‘loyalty’ was ever a thing. Like ‘friendship’ and ‘trust’, it works best when it is never tested. Government employees can goldbrick for decades, and never spend a moment building a LinkedIn profile or exploring career growth or other positions. But looking back at the last 20 years, I think about all the retail workers (Blockbuster, etc.) and corporate downsizing (aerospace, engineering, Enron, Arthur Andersen, etc.) and see people in my cohort that lost a good-paying job and never got back in the workforce.

    So I’m looking forward to reading the new book Down and Out in the New Economy: How People Find (or Don’t Find) Work Today by the author of the article. Thanks again for the share, hope all is well with you, Adam Chudy!

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