Wednesday, September 10, 2008

What is a career?

In 2001 I was laid off from what I thought was a career. I was in the job for eight years of challenging creativity. I thought I hit a home run with a fun creative job from which I would be able to eventually retire.

Finally after seven years I'm once again earning a living wage at a new job. I'm thinking about buying a house and I've been searching the Internet for just the right place. A few days ago my boss emailed me a form I needed to fill out called "building your future."

The form had questions such as "What are your career plans for the next five years?" and "What position are you planning on pursuing at the company?" The hard lesson I learned was that words like "career" and "retirement" create a false sense of job security.

The trauma of getting laid off is everlasting, and the habits of businesses to shed off employees for whatever reason is creating a traumatized workforce of people zipping up their wallets, cutting credit cards, and keeping multiple career options available. Creating a fearful, skeptical and less focused workforce, ready to jump ship at the first sign of a leak.
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