Job security is so over. It has been for fifteen years.
For much of that period, many of us pretended otherwise. It was just easier that way.
But now, with CEOs pulling down pink slips as fast as mail room clerks, there’s no avoiding the truth. Job security has been terminated. For everybody.
It was an illusion anyway. Think about it. When your security is provided by someone else—your employer—and only at their whim—when profits are up—how real is it? You get better odds at Vegas.
So, what’s a person to do?
Fortify yourself with career security. It’s something you control. You determine whether you have it. Or you don’t.
What is it? Career security is the ability to stay employed in a job you want, regardless of the state of the economy or the financial condition of any one organization.
You’re secure because you have something any and every employer wants. In a recession. In a recovery. And in boom times.
You can pick when, where and how you will work because you have talent. Not five or ten or fifteen years of experience. Not five or ten or fifteen years of dedicated service to an employer. And not this degree or that from this school or that.
You see, career security doesn’t come from being good enough to do a job. It’s not achieved even by being qualified to perform the work. If you want to stay employed in a job of your choosing, you have to be the best qualified person there is for the kind of work you do and you have to prove it every day on-the-job by delivering more than your employer expects and helping your coworkers to do the same.
That’s talent any employer will recognize and hire in a heartbeat. Sure, it’s a high bar. But that bar is within the reach of everyone. It may take more effort for some than others—especially those who’ve been content to coast in their careers—but all of us have the innate ability to grab hold of it and pull ourselves up. We are all born with talent. We just have to decide to use it.
Why make the effort? Because the days of coasting are over. The “come as you are job market” no longer exists. And it’s never coming back.
It’s been replaced by a war for work. The American economy now has too few jobs for too many workers. In that kind of environment, there can be only two kinds of people: winners and losers.
This war for work is not a metaphor. It’s as real and dangerous as the streets of Kabul. But here, the only enemy we face is our own indifference. And victory is assured to those with career security.
Thanks for reading,
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