Employment Opportunities

June 29, 2009

It sounds counter-intuitive while in a recession, but we are on the verge of a period of strong employment for anyone with a clue. Here’s why: This recession is just a bit of a breather before the hunt for talented people resumes. I should point out, that during the last recession when aggregate unemployment was round 8%, it never got past 3% for those with a college degree.

Spend this period before the recovery to hone your skills, take a course, and give deep thought to what you want to be doing when the headhunters start calling again.


Interview Notes

June 25, 2009

The interview went pretty well. It was actually kind of cool. I thought I might run out of things to say (yeah, right…) but actually I could have talked for an hour. That’s not really the point of a radio interview, of course.

I received a number of emails from friends and colleagues.

All that said, I’m excited that The PWAC Manifesto is starting to get some traction. I believe it is important for us to understand the issues facing our society, our economy, your company and your career.

This recession has been painful and while it might not seem like it, is only a respite before the demand for talent resumes its upward climb.

Take this time to refresh your skills and take a few minutes out of your day and start thinking about how you want to live and work when things start to improve, which I believe will be later this year.

Remember, all those Gen Y’s started graduating from college in 2007 and in about 3-4 years will be starting to buy houses and fill them with all the stuff we already have in our houses. Then the market and the general economy will rush to supply those new households with goods and services.

So, spend some time thinking about the future. Which one do you want?


June 24, 2009

My first radio interview for the book will be on the Brad Davis Show on WDRC AM1360 in Hartford on Thursday, 7:20am-7:30am. Tune in if you are in the area. I will try to get a recording of it posted as as MP3 on this site as soon as I can.

An interesting book about Gen Y, “Not Everyone Gets a Trophy” by Bruce Tulgan talks about the challenges of managing that generation. Full of anecdotes about how managing them is like herding cats and often more like parenting than managing.

Will this recessionary time recalibrate Gen Y expectations? Simple economics suggests so, especially as the enormous size of that cohort increases competition for the “good jobs’ as economic strength returns.

A recent Harris Interactive survey of Gen Y employees found that three out of five respondents said that their first employer did not provide a clear path for advancement. Of course, the reality is that few employers provide a clear path to anything, much less to the corner office.

Other key findings:
Describing how their first job made them feel, 13% said they couldn’t wait for Friday to arrive, 10% wanted to quit every day and 8% felt it was a waste of their time

19% of 18-34 year olds wanted to quit their first job every day, compared to 3% of those 55 years old and over

So, does this represent unrealistic expectations by Gen Y or the typical angst of first time employees? Based on the research in the PWAC Manifesto, I suspect that we are seeing a continuation of the trend that started when they were kids. After years of being told by their parents and teachers that they were “special” many really believe that a few months or years into a job they should already have a clear path to the top. Did we all think that way when we were that young? I don’t recall feeling that way.

Here’s the paradox: there is a shortage of PWACs of all ages. So on one hand you do want to retain them even if they might need to recalibrate their expectations.

On the other, the Gen Y generation is huge so you might be time to consider letting the most unrealistic ones go and cast your net back into the pool.

How do you manage Gen Ys or UNREALISTIC expectations regardless of the age of your employee?

A case for national innovation incentives
Priming the pump of American innovation is going to mean getting the government involved, Derek Thompson argues. With Wall Street luring away the nation’s geniuses, Thompson argues that the government should be looking for ways to make science and technology careers hugely profitable so that the best minds will be lured back to technical professions. He suggest offering government innovation incentives, cutting taxes, creating a secretary of innovation and boosting education standards to bring the U.S. back to the forefront. TheAtlantic.com (6/5)

Friends, I’m getting the hang of this blog thing, I think. I have been collecting interesting news items and reading more about what makes a PWAC. Someone recently asked me about whether “PWACINESS” is actually a new idea or not. Haven’t “elites” always existed?

It’s a good point. My view is that while there always have been the elites in societies they were traditionally what I would call hereditary elites. Where monarchies existed, the elite came from the loins of the so-called royalty. In our culture, our elites came for the families of our richest citizens, many of whom EARNED their wealth in the entrepreneurial scrum of 19th Century America.

Today, elites (PWACs) will come from the ranks of the SMART. If you have the SKILLS, ATTRIBUTES, ATTITUDES, and INTELLECT to add value, companies and organizations will want, NO –NEED you regardless of where you come from.

The Talent Shortage may possibly do for people what BILLIONS of DOLLARS in spending and legislation have thus far failed to do. Create equality of opportunity for all…well, ALL that are willing to invest the time and energy it takes to cultivate these important skills.

It brings the question: Can ANYONE be a PWAC if they work hard enough? Your thoughts?

Welcome Friends

May 30, 2009

The book finally came out last Thursday and hit AMAZON.COM on Tuesday, May 26.

I must say that it is pretty thrilling to see your name on the cover of a book. I guess that’s one more check off on the bucket list.  I am already starting to collect errata and additions for a future 2nd edition. If anyone has any links or referrals of site or people, please post here or email privately to GMSparzo@gmail.com. That address is exclusively for my writing projects.

I also want to express my appreciation for my friends who have purchased the book. Look for news on the date for a booksigning party in Connecticut sometime in late June.

Have a great weekend.


Testing Testing 1 2 3

March 1, 2009

As The PWAC Manifesto gets closer to publication I will be talking about the concepts discussed in the book and hope that readers will then engage in a lively dialog. I’ll also be using this site to gather data for a follow-up book in Fall 2009