I rarely watch or read the news. But it seems that every time I turn on the depression-engine, er, I mean news broadcast, there is a report on unemployment. And without fail, there is always a correspondent interviewing jobless folk complaining about everything from their former employer to the President.
What I have yet to hear is any accountability on the unemployed side. And I find myself internally screaming at the TV: Why did you truly get laid off? Was it because someone had it out for you? Or more likely, did you get canned because you suck?
The last time I checked, there were many businesses doing extremely well. Most are hiring. Or at least attempting to fill roles left by another’s departure. This need for new employees holds universally true across most industry jobs, except maybe typewriter technicians and trans-fat factory workers. So what’s up with this historically substantial out-of-work population?
The Rise of Entitlement
Most Americans are ignorant when it comes to self-empowering. No one deserves a secure job. But yet, hundreds of thousands plead with the government and businesses to provide a steady line of work. This is industrial age mentality. And it has given birth to an ugly, half-breed baby with DNA based upon ridiculous pension plans and false sense of job security.
The corporate guarantees (finger points at GM) promised to our workforce over the previous century were obviously unsustainable. And while most companies had changed policies to better accommodate new age strategies for human capital management, the labor force still takes their job for granted. The typical employee mindset goes something like this:
- Go to college…
- Get good grades…
- Find an entry-level job…
- Kiss ass & work hard…
- Get promoted…
- Repeat steps 5 & 6 until retirement…
What’s missing from this life schedule? That’s right… continual self-improvement. And don’t try to tell me that the management issued training two years ago counts. Or that the pamphlet at the checkout line of Office Max you leafed through last month was career altering.
Stop Lying To Yourself
Everyone believes they have self-worth. Well forget what your mom told you and grow up. If you do not constantly strive for more education, stop complaining about your crappy or no job. You must continually craft your expertise!
Where To Start
There are many options available to effectively, and often times, cheaply improve your chances of landing a great job:
Reading books is hands down the best way to make yourself much more attractive to prospective employers. Having the ability to learn a slice of someone’s life knowledge on a subject in an afternoon is incredible.
A couple of these books a week multiplied by a few months, and I will guarantee you’ll outshine anyone competing for the same job. And no, Twilight is not the genre of book I’m talking about here. They must further your education into your field.
Furthermore, don’t sit there and say books are expensive. Or that without a job you’re stuck financially. Skip past that 30-pack of High Life. Cancel your $130/month cable tv service. And get an Amazon account. Strive to read at least one highly rated book a week.
The big brother of books, seminars and conferences are great avenues to learn more about a subject. The atmosphere is conducive for learning as you are thrown in with a mix of others, all listening and participating to the same discussion. And don’t think you need to wait for the huge annual industry-specific conference in Las Vegas. You can start small. First go to some local seminars and begin meeting others. See where that takes you… I’d imagine far.
Subscribe to Blogs
There is a wonderful sense of enlightenment every morning when I check my RSS reader. It’s constantly filled with a daily digest of industry insight, personal development and other articles for self-improvement. And they are free. Imagine that! Hundreds of sources of career growth available at your fingertips, 24/7.
Engage in the Industry
By joining and participating in official organizations, you’ll stay versed in the latest happenings in the industry. Also visit and actively engage in industry specific online groups. LinkedIn groups, Facebook pages and Twitter chats are great places to get your feet wet. From there, you may find more resources and areas in which to meet and network with fellow industry colleagues.
Volunteer in Your Community
If you’re jobless, what else do you have to do? You’d typically be at work anyway, right? So give back to the community. And besides the direct benefits of helping others. You’ll meet a slew of like-minded individuals that share a common goal of improving the well being of others. But guess what? As you network with these folks, you will gain name and face recognition with prominent leaders in the area. And who normally are the hiring type? You bet, prominent leaders.
When All Else Fails? Change Careers
So you’ve been reading books and hanging out with others in your industry, yet no job? Chances are you’re simply in the wrong career. But don’t feel bad, not every job is perfect for every person. So buck up, buddy. And move on…
To conclude, if you’re reading this blog, I doubt you didn’t already know the aforementioned info, so go out and continue with your success. Thanks for perusing my rant on the unemployed. And if you enjoyed it, please share: