We have all heard the phrase from a young age “Go to school and study hard so you can get a safe secure job” right? Did you believe it like I did? I mean I must have heard that a hundred times from well-meaning authority figures like parents, grand parents, teachers and other mentors when I was young. So if that was so true why was I downsized out of 3 jobs in 4 years by the companies I was working for? I will tell you why because what we were taught is not good advice in todays marketplace. If you think you have job security working for someone else I bet you believe in the Easter Bunny. Don’t take it personally but it job security does not exist.According to the March 9, 2010 Time Magazine Cover Story…Jeff Wagoner is a bankruptcy attorney in Kansas City, Mo.,Wagoner’s clients (and he has plenty these days) range from folks who had no business ever buying a house to folks freshly fired from executive suites. Based on his survey of the economic wreckage, Wagoner’s conclusion is that even the slightest miscalculation or change in circumstances could send another customer through his door: “There are not a lot of second chances out there right now.” We have entered the one-strike-and-you’re-out era. One lost job. One medical emergency. One bad risk or misjudgment of the heart. “I’ve seen more people lose their houses in the past year than in the previous nine years put together,” Wagoner said one recent afternoon, as gray skies hung low over the vast horizon. “It sounds crazy,” he continued, “but I’d say unless you’re making over $350,000 a year, the more you’re paid, the more vulnerable you are. If you lose a job, you’re going to have a hard time finding another that pays as much. Or maybe you need to move to find that new job, but you’re stuck with a house you can’t sell. Or maybe your marriage breaks up, and you have to liquidate your assets at today’s prices.”
You see many of our jobs have been eliminated and will never be coming back. I am not talking about jobs going off shore. Although global competition forces many companies to out source and send tasks overseas to take advantages of skilled labor at a much lower cost. What I am really referring to is jobs that are totally eliminated by the enhancements in technology. Let me give you an example. A messenger company who 20 years uses 20 bike messengers to deliver documents and files between clients and other business parties may only need 2-3 to handle today’s workload because 90% of those files can be sent via e-Mail today.
According to this April 8, 2010 MSNBC article 1.2 million households have been lost in this recession. Think about that…1.2 million empty houses and families sleeping on other peoples couches. Many of them believed the lessons taught by well-meaning adults who could have never predicted what this period would be like. What can you do to protect yourself from the potential disaster? Start a part-time business out of your home. Have a plan “B” so you have a back up in case your plan “A” is eliminated or in case your plan “A” needs to reduce your income. Many of the top experts predict that many former executives will tire from the experiences of Corporate American and start an entrepreneurial endeavor and never return to the work place. Many will choose a direct selling company of home based business and others will choose a franchise model. Here is my major concern for our kids who are still being taught the same lessons I was taught 30 years ago. I think becoming an entrepreneur is so important today unless you want your kids to experience these same struggles. Technology will continue to advance at a rapid pace and more jobs will be eliminated at that faster pace in the future. So the way I look at it is get some experience so you can teach your kids how to control their life or they can listen to the advice of go to school, study hard and get good grades so you can have a safe secure job. The choice is yours.
This guest post was written by my good friend John Heerhold, a successful entrepreneur here in the Chicagoland area who helps people “make a living, living”! Have you heard of his legendary dream trips and vacations yet? You should! John is also my co-host on our special “Making God First Mondays” , each episode done live, every Monday morning at 7am. Glad that he can make another contribution to our Money Smart community! Be sure to follow him on Twitter - John Heerhold or email him, firstname.lastname@example.org