If you’re feeling a bit lost about your next move, join the club. The most recent recession and spike in unemployment it (invariably) brought on coincides with – and adds consideralbe fuel to – an employment economy that your grandparents would likely freak out over just a little. Well – the ones who spent their lives working for one employer. If you grandparents happened to be seasonal workers, or your grandmother temped for Kelly back in the day, then this may look familiar. Or if they happened to play pro ball…
Here’s the thing: there’s a good chance you’re going temping. Not steno-pool level, but more along the lines that match your skill sets. We’re looking at a 30% increase in the number of temps/ consultants/ freelancer types by the end of this decade. Or, 10% more of the labor market will be “foot loose and fancy free”. As it were.
Why? Here’s one reason: companies are becoming more agile. They’re able to quickly switch what tech they use to suit immediate needs, rapidly adapt their marketing approaches via live data they’re pulling from their CRM’s, etc. You may be well suited for an approach they’re taking, but if doesn’t prove out or the project ends and there’s nobody in the company that needs your skills you may get bumped.
Since most companies aren’t big fans of hiring & firing people in rapid cycles, expect them to be looking for people who can come in and work for the for a temporary period.
Not a bad thing: If you’re a skilled knowledge worker, you’ll be working with a talent agency (sort of like Ari Gold) who will be lining you up for projects while you’re still on one. This is a pretty regular thing in the IT world – yes, that’s right, always the early adopters – where a staffing agency will have a roster of clients who will call in when they need to bolster their tech department. IE: Putnam calls and needs a handful of DBA’s, systems engineers, an integration person, etc, for 6 month project they have starting in 3 months. IT agency talks to their engineering talent, figures out who can start then and fits the bill, then sends the team in when its time. They handle all payrolling, taxes, benefits, as well as firing. Expect to see that model applied much more heavily to other departments.
So – a mindmap? Yes. You’re going to need to have a decent tool belt of skills to stay agile in the years coming. You have many more skills than you realize – people have a much easier time seeing their flaws versus strengths. A mindmap is simply a way to put it all on screen, quickly, and then have a foundation of skills & talents you can build on. Once you’ve done that, get going. Pick three that seem promising and do some homework. Might want to apply Slide 29 of http://www.slideshare.net/merlinmann/who-moved-my-brain-revaluing-time-and-at… to each one (10/ 50 dash from 43 Folders).