Mind Shift: Where to Begin with “Reinventing Work”

Who Moved My Job?

ACHIEVINGBefore you can get about the business of Reinventing Work, it is important to recall where we have come from, in terms of workplace traditions and expectations. The workplace expectations you have today are likely based on norms you were raised with, many of which no longer hold true.

That thinking could be the very thing standing in the way of finding work or creating the next level of career success.

Let’s compare the workplace of yesterday with the new reality.

It Ain’t Your Daddy’s Buick

Looking at the workplace of the past, we see the following:

  • Fixed workplace where employees gathered
  • Fixed work hours, fixed paycheck, often including benefits, such as healthcare and vacation
  • Defined career path, and perhaps a mentor-boss
  • Lengthy tenure, a funded retirement plan, and a predictable retirement date

Today’s Workplace

Oh, how things have changed since the crash of 2008.

For a time, there were six qualified applicants for every job posting. Thankfully, those numbers have receded a bit in your favor. Today, I continue to hear that there are three qualified applicants for every posting.

What that does not take into account is the sheer volume of responses to job postings. What’s more, the fastest growing segment of the workplace is referred to as the “contingent worker.” That is, someone hired on a contract, project, or temporary basis, without benefits.

The key features of today’s workplace:

  • Remote or dispersed workforce
  • Work based on milestones, not hours worked
  • Web-based project tracking and communications
  • Portfolio-based skills, versus climbing a ladder
  • Retirement may be postponed indefinitely

The New Normal

Are you waiting for the economy to recover and your job search to go back to normal? As I mentioned in my last post, stop trying to find a (permanent) job. Why? Because every job is temporary.

While you may find a full-time job with fantastic benefits and stay for many years, that picture is becoming rare. Instead of focusing only on a traditional job, look to become more resilient and creative in your outlook and career strategy. Today, you can often find work more quickly than you can find a job. That work can translate into your ideal job.

I invite you to have a mind shift. That way, you are prepared to embrace whatever may come tomorrow.