Right now, the general market perception is that jobs are temporary. For employees, even if we have a “great job” we are always looking for bigger and better opportunities. For employers, while interviewing to fill positions, we may hold off hiring in anticipation that someone better may come along. Why? Uncertainty and curiosity. Humans are curious by nature: we have a strong desire to know EVERYTHING. While there is nothing wrong with that, it can cause deep uncertainty. We can’t help but wonder, “Is this as good as it gets? There must be something better out there!” It’s called “Green Grass Syndrome:” we always think the grass is greener on the other side. What we fail to recognize, however, is that the grass is ALWAYS greener on the other side. Until we fully grasp this reality, we will continually focus on other opportunities and squander the opportunity right in front of us…
If you have ever bought or sold a piece of real estate before, you probably heard of the terms “buyers or sellers market.” It’s a function of supply and demand: often times you can get a real steal when there is greater inventory, but will pay through the nose if fewer houses are on the market with equal or greater competition.
The jobs marketplace runs parallel to many of the same symptoms people face during a declining or inclining real estate market. The latest statistics from the Economic Policy Institute indicates the ratio of unemployed workers to job openings increased by three tenths from 3.7 to 1 from March to April 2012. An increase in the ratio simply means there is more completion for fewer jobs. In this case, no jobs exist for about 2 out of 3 job seekers.
Just recently a friend of mine who works in HR received this email in response to her company’s job posting for an executive level opportunity: “Hello! My name is ________. I have my MBA, CPA and CTP and am in DESPERATE need of a job. I am extremely interested in this job, so please respond ASAP! Thank You, _________.”
Her complaint: “I understand his desperation for a job, but who does he think he is? I am the hiring manager, yet he is demanding I ‘respond ASAP?’ I know he is an executive, but I hope he refrains from using that demanding tone with other hiring managers or else he will never get hired."
Considering quitting your job? You’re not alone. A recent online survey showed that more than half of all workers are considering quitting this year. Believe it or not, every year 40 million people change jobs. It’s crazy to think that people are considering quitting their jobs in this stifling economy, but is it?
Well, it depends on WHY someone wants to quit. If their reasons are justified, then they’re NOT crazy for wanting to quit their jobs.
The Things You’re Willing to do for the Things That You Want to Do…
Value is almost always intrinsically linked to cost. Both the intangibles and tangibles that we hold dear tend to come at a high price: a price worth paying. Why? Because the things we consider to be “quick and easy” are most of the time cheap, ultimately unsatisfying, and relatively worthless. Think about it. Getting that Big Mac and fries from McDonald’s drive through is cheap (less than $5), ultimately unsatisfying (it’s nothing to write home about), and relatively worthless (the nutritional content is non-existent); yet, we still find ourselves waiting in that drive through line and having a “meal on the go” because in the midst of our busy lives, we chose convenience over quality.
In our culture, we have become prone to taking the path of least resistance. We like things quick. We like things easy. We like things cheap. Why take the stairs when you can take the elevator? Why cook when you can go out to eat? Why go to the mall when you can have whatever it is that you want delivered right to your doorstep? While convenience undoubtedly makes our lives a little bit easier, it doesn’t necessarily make it satisfying.
Ever heard of that saying, “Nothing worth having ever comes without a fight?” While we wish it wasn’t, we all know it’s the truth...
As adults, we often ask our children, “So what do you want to be when you grow up?” Veterinarian, fireman, ballerina, actor or actress are the typical answers we get. Don’t you have somewhat of a nostalgic feeling when you think about this question because you too answered it at one point?
Wouldn't it be interesting to survey a group of kids 15 years later to find out what they majored in in college and then 10 years after that to find out what career path they ended up pursuing? Do you think they are doing the same thing they dreamed about as children? Probably not. Why the change of heart? Maybe children lose interest or find something that interests them more, maybe they decided to capitalize on their raw talents, or maybe, just maybe, they let others choose for them.
Employers Can’t Find People. Job Seekers Can’t Find Jobs. This May Be Why…
When watching, reading, or hearing the news, doesn’t it seem as if there are always reports about aspects of our everyday lives getting revamped? From energy, to technology, to healthcare, to oil and gas, to education, to… you name it. Governments and companies alike are always looking for ways to make things more efficient, more sustainable, more cost-effective, more user-friendly, more… (Again, you name it). This is a good thing right? It is evolution and adaptation at its finest.
While this is all great, the one aspect of our everyday life that has NOT been revamped (and therefore, has not been newsworthy) is the way in which we find jobs and hire employees within the marketplace. We watch, read, and hear news about the economy all the time: the unemployment rate going up/down, unemployment compensation being extended, massive lay-offs by companies, etc. We NEVER hear about what is being done to ease the frustrations of current job seekers and employers. Is that because there are none? Quite the contrary.
Don’t Get Bogged Down by the Recent Job Numbers… There’s Hope That the End is Near
Last week brought a lot of bad economic news: the unemployment rate rose to 8.2%, only 69,000 jobs were added in May (which was a major surprise because economists were expecting that number to be in the 100,000 range), and we learned that we’d added 49,000 fewer jobs in March and April than we’d thought. Additionally, Congress has committed itself to cut spending by about $100 billion next year and more than $1 trillion over the next decade. If that happens and the Bush tax cuts and payroll holiday are not extended, the economy is expected to decline by 3.5-5%. And so on…
When it comes to the economy and jobs, it seems as if we are constantly being bogged down by bad news. This makes it hard to “see the light at the end of the tunnel.” But, believe it or not, there are some signs that the end is near.
Dreaming Big Doesn’t Necessarily Mean We Should Chase the Big
Did you know that there are 17 million companies within the United States? Probably not.
Whenever we think of companies offhand we think big names: Apple, Microsoft, Deloitte, Exxon Mobile, Walmart, General Motors… Why? We see and hear about these companies on a daily basis. Because of this, we often fantasize about working for these big names one day. “It would be so cool.” So what do we do… we chase.
These days everyone is chasing global businesses. I mean, come on, Google receives ten thousand job applications a day!
While I am sure it’d be awesome to work for Google, what we fail to recognize is that every business, regardless of its size, makes significant contributions to the growth of this economy. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be in business, right? So, just like big companies offer employment opportunities, small and medium sized companies do as well. It’s probably smarter to chase those instead…
College Graduates: Losing That Feeling of High Hope. How Can It Be Reestablished?
College. It seems like everyone is going these days. Why? It’s becoming the “norm.” If you graduate high school without an acceptance letter from a university you’re almost considered a loser. Naturally, we are left to believe that getting a Bachelor’s Degree makes us “winners” then, right? Well, it’s hard to feel like a winner when 1 in 2 new graduates are underemployed or jobless in today’s world. Believe it or not, the job prospects for Bachelor’s Degree holders fell last year to the lowest level in more than a decade. With statistics like this, it makes us wonder whether or not our college degrees, and moreso hefty tuition payments, were worth it. With statistics like this, it makes us wonder why we entered college with such high hopes for ourselves.
What's the Difference between the American Idol Judges and a HR Department?
On average, 40 million Americans tune into the hit TV Show, American Idol. Why? Because it’s the American Dream at its finest: it’s the journey of making one’s way up from nothing to something. Small town boy/girl turns into a superstar over night. Undiscovered talent suddenly discovered. This is why Americans will all be tuned in tonight for the season finale. It is proof that the American Dream CAN come true.