Think beyond jobs

In the book "The Coming Jobs War" by Gallup Chairman Jim Clifton, what everyone in the world wants is a good job. Creating good jobs is tough, and many leaders are doing many things wrong. They're undercutting entrepreneurs instead of cultivating them. They're running companies with depressed workforces. They're letting the next generation of job creators rot in bad schools.

A global jobs war is coming, and cities are crumbling for lack of good jobs. Nations are in revolt because their people can't get good jobs. The cities and countries that act first -- that focus everything they have on creating good jobs -- are the ones that will win.

In the old days, it is about life long employment. Today it is about jobs and lifelong employability. Buzzwords like Upgrading, Retraining, Learn, Unlearn, Relearn, etc…, suddenly became flavors of the month.

You may retrain and relearn in a field that is currently hot, but what if you have no aptitude for it. How satisfied will you be on the job? How far can you go? How competent can you become? How much can you contribute and add value?

A better bet is to play to your strengths. All of us have special talents. Our brains are wired to have preferences and special interests. They key is to match those preferences to your work. Otherwise, the millions of dollars spent in retraining may actually create another wave of turnover and staff issues due to job misfit and work life dis-satisfaction!

In fact, what if technology becomes so advanced that the concept of jobs for people becomes obsolete?
In the Robotic Nation essays (www.Marshallbrain.com), Marshal Brain wrote convincingly that robots will eliminate a huge portion of the jobs currently held by humans, as seen in the excerpt below:

There are 3.5 million jobs in the fast food industry alone. Many of those will be lost to kiosks. Many more will be lost to robots that can flip burgers and clean bathrooms. Eventually they will all be lost. The only people who will still have jobs in the fast food industry will be the senior management team at corporate headquarters.

The same sort of thing will happen in retail stores, hotels, airports, factories, construction sites, delivery companies and so on. All of these jobs will evaporate at approximately the same time, leaving all of those workers unemployed. The Post Office, FedEx and UPS together employed over a million workers in 2002. Once robots can drive the trucks and deliver the packages at a much lower cost than human workers can, those 1,000,000 or so employees will be out on the street.

If you look at the 2000 census figures, you can see the magnitude of the problem. According to the census, there were 114 million employees working for 7 million companies in 2000. The employees brought home almost $4 trillion in wages that year. It is easy to understand that there will be huge job losses by 2040 or 2050 as robots move into the workplace.

For example:

  • Nearly every construction job will go to a robot. That's about 6 million jobs lost.
  • Nearly every manufacturing job will go to a robot. That's 16 million jobs lost.
  • Nearly every transportation job will go to a robot. That's 3 million jobs lost.
  • Many wholesale and retail jobs will go to robots. That's at least 15 million lost jobs.
  • Nearly every hotel and restaurant job will go to a robot. That's 10 million jobs lost.

If you add that all up, it's over 50 million jobs lost to robots. That is a conservative estimate. By 2050 or so, it is very likely that over half the jobs in the United States will be held by robots. All the people who are holding jobs like those today will be unemployed. And robots could start taking over human jobs as early as 2015.

If you think the above is far fetched, think again. According to Marshall Brain,

There were millions of people in 1900 who believed that humans would never fly. Yet by 1947, Chuck Yeager flew the X1 at supersonic speeds. In 1954, the B-52 bomber made its maiden flight. It took only 51 years to go from a rickety wooden airplane flying at 10 MPH, to a gigantic aluminum jet-powered Stratofortress carrying 70,000 pounds of bombs halfway around the world at 550 MPH. In 1958, Pan Am started non-stop jet flights between New York and Paris in the Boeing 707. In 1969, Americans set foot on the moon. It is unbelievable what engineers and corporations can accomplish in 50 or 60 short years.

This is due to Moore's Law, which says that CPU power doubles every 18 to 24 months or so.

The writing is on the wall. Jobs will become obsolete, one day soon. Bye bye job security. Bye bye jobs. Instead of worrying, why not be a first mover and grab the advantage?

Look for rewarding work, which is meaningful and pays well too. Where do you find them? Focus on your sweet spot of CPA (competency, passion and advantages). Steer clear of areas that can be easily replaced by technology, such as repetitive or structured tasks.

Think beyond a job. Look at the needs of your customers and start generating options. Ask, "how you can create value for your customers?" When you can do that, you don't need a job because you can deliver real value and be paid handsomely for it.

Go back to the following basics and doimnate your Niche:

  1. Excel at work – results, not reasons
  2. Sharpen your acumen - Prosper your organization, prosper yourself
  3. Serve with passion – Without passion, you can be easily replaced
  4. Help Others Succeed! – This is the universal law of reciprocity

A job is simply a means to an end. A job is "Just Over Broke", because many people barely survive and they struggle to meet their financial obligations until the next pay day. Then the cycle starts again. A better bet is to take ownership of your career and your life, and reclaim your independence.

Make your loved ones proud today. Go for it!

Contact us today to think beyond jobs and up your income security!

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