Tag Archives: New York Times

Why you will likely not get a job – why you have to become a “maker”

This appeared today in the NYT – Average is not Good Enough – Tom Friedman offers the context for why you or your kids will not be able to get a well paying middle class job.

In the past, workers with average skills, doing an average job, could earn an average lifestyle. But, today, average is officially over. Being average just won’t earn you what it used to. It can’t when so many more employers have so much more access to so much more above average cheap foreign labor, cheap robotics, cheap software, cheap automation and cheap genius. Therefore, everyone needs to find their extra — their unique value contribution that makes them stand out in whatever is their field of employment. Average is over.

Yes, new technology has been eating jobs forever, and always will. As they say, if horses could have voted, there never would have been cars. But there’s been an acceleration. As Davidson notes, “In the 10 years ending in 2009, [U.S.] factories shed workers so fast that they erased almost all the gains of the previous 70 years; roughly one out of every three manufacturing jobs — about 6 million in total — disappeared.”

And you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. Last April, Annie Lowrey of Slate wrote about a start-up called “E la Carte” that is out to shrink the need for waiters and waitresses: The company “has produced a kind of souped-up iPad that lets you order and pay right at your table. The brainchild of a bunch of M.I.T. engineers, the nifty invention, known as the Presto, might be found at a restaurant near you soon. … You select what you want to eat and add items to a cart. Depending on the restaurant’s preferences, the console could show you nutritional information, ingredients lists and photographs. You can make special requests, like ‘dressing on the side’ or ‘quintuple bacon.’ When you’re done, the order zings over to the kitchen, and the Presto tells you how long it will take for your items to come out. … Bored with your companions? Play games on the machine. When you’re through with your meal, you pay on the console, splitting the bill item by item if you wish and paying however you want. And you can have your receipt e-mailed to you. … Each console goes for $100 per month. If a restaurant serves meals eight hours a day, seven days a week, it works out to 42 cents per hour per table — making the Presto cheaper than even the very cheapest waiter.”

What the iPad won’t do in an above average way a Chinese worker will. Consider this paragraph from Sunday’s terrific article in The Times by Charles Duhigg and Keith Bradsher about why Apple does so much of its manufacturing in China: “Apple had redesigned the iPhone’s screen at the last minute, forcing an assembly-line overhaul. New screens began arriving at the [Chinese] plant near midnight. A foreman immediately roused 8,000 workers inside the company’s dormitories, according to the executive. Each employee was given a biscuit and a cup of tea, guided to a workstation and within half an hour started a 12-hour shift fitting glass screens into beveled frames. Within 96 hours, the plant was producing over 10,000 iPhones a day. ‘The speed and flexibility is breathtaking,’ the executive said. ‘There’s no American plant that can match that.’ ”

And automation is not just coming to manufacturing, explains Curtis Carlson, the chief executive of SRI International, a Silicon Valley idea lab that invented the Apple iPhone program known as Siri, the digital personal assistant. “Siri is the beginning of a huge transformation in how we interact with banks, insurance companies, retail stores, health care providers, information retrieval services and product services.”

So what to do? Tom F thinks we all need more education. I think we need to change the game. Start making things ourselves locally – food and all we need. Thy technology is here to help us.

Thousands of us connected in a network making in small batches what we all need. The New Maker Economy.

3D printers will soon be able to make anything

Urban farms will be able to grow 40% of our food

Connect all of this into a network and we have a new economy. This way we harness all the new for us and not for THEM

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If you are over 50 and lost your job – there may never be another one – so what are you gong to do?

This is the US picture – but I see no reason why this will not be the Canadian experience.

As I wrote in an article on Friday, even those who are back at work are not necessarily doing so well: only 7 percent of those who lost jobs after the financial crisis have recovered their income and standard of living. What’s more, the downturn and its aftermath have disproportionately hit people with less education. Even though the unemployment rates of high school dropouts and graduates have fallen from recent highs, they are still much higher than the rate for college graduates.

The Labor Department’s jobs report for November, released Friday morning, also shows that the number of employed high school graduates actually fell by 187,000 over the last 12 months, while the number of employed college graduates has gone up 1.1 million during the same period.

Nevertheless, readers have pointed out that even among the college-educated, there is one cohort that is still feeling more pain: older workers. More than half of all unemployed workers 45 to 54 years old have been out of work for six months or more, and among unemployed 55-to-64-year-olds, close to 60 percent have been searching for work for more than six months.

People in the older of these two groups are worse off than they were a year ago. The median duration of unemployment rose from 36.6 weeks a year ago to 42.7 weeks this November. The younger of the two groups is slightly better off; its median duration of unemployment fell to 27.9 weeks, down from 30.2 weeks a year ago.

So if you work now and you are in your late 40′ early 50’s what is your plan? Hoping that you will get another job is not good enough!

Please think about how you can join the real new economy that is based on making a living inside a good network. Find out where there is a Co Working space near you and start to develop a parallel life.

Here is where you can find such a place.