Digging Into Recruiting Blogs v2.02
(Jan 10, 2009) This week, I moved into a big house on the beach (well, almost) in Bodega Bay, California. The town, which is on the Sonoma Coast, is where Hitchcock's The Birds was filmed. It has beautiful beaches, a golf course in my backyard, a bird preserve around the corner and a lifetime supply of fog.
The town even has a blog.
Moving sucks. Even in my compact state, it took a week to box up the library, both pieces of furniture, my three shirts and my massive stamp collection. Okay, I'm kidding about the stamps. It did take a week to get it all done. I'd planned for just a couple of days. I'm exhausted from the sheer physical work.
I've made a couple of key New Year's resolutions as a result of the move. I am never going to buy anything again. Ever. And, I will always use a moving company in the future.
Focused on the details of logistics, I've been completely out of touch with the news, the community at RBC and everything in my life that can't be lifted, bubble wrapped and put in a box. All of the big picture stuff takes a clean backseat when you move.
Grumbling aside, I am feeling extremely lucky. I made a decision to live my dreams and this was one of the steps along the path. After years of wanting to live at the beach, I did it. It's the first of many things that will unfold in 2009.
Out of the corner of my ear, I got the sense that the panic about economics continued to dominate public discourse. It's really amazing how badly some people want this to be bad. The data about job losses continues to worsen but no one ever gives it context. The object is to scare you with things that sound bad.
The American Workforce has 150,000,000 people in it. This doesn't include a very large number of small business people (like lots of Recruiters) who don't work for a W2. Some estimates put the total number of workers as high as 200,000,000. So when 5,000,000 are out of work and filing for unemployment, it's a bad sign. But, it only involves 2.5% of the total workforce. If 600,000 jobs were lost each month of 2009 (and none created), it would be about 5% of the total of 150,000,000.
It's unpleasant, yes. But it's not the end of the world. Most people will just be scared by what happens over the next couple of years. Those who are directly affected wil have an unimaginable opportunity on their hands. The freedom and excitement available when everyone else is scared silly is bracing.
I'd like to encourage you to find and live your dream. There's no time like a downturn to make the kinds of changes you've always wanted to make. Live like your dreams just might come true tomorrow. Once you are willing to tell the world exactly what you want, it has a way of coming true very quickly.
Recession or not.
I don't think it's possible to overestimate the impact that the media is having on perceptions of the Recession. Provoking fear (which requires a load of status updating and reassurrance) is the best way to sell news media.
The more scared you are, the more you have to check to see if there's still a reason to be scared.
It's very primal stuff (and very manipulative).
When you consider the fact that the folks in the News Media are all insecure (because their jobs are going away), it's reasonably easy to see the way their fears are amplified. It's a great big echo chamber.
Around here, the restaurants have waiting lines and the malls seem reasonably busy. There are a lot of vacant houses (where do those people go?). Since there's no banking or manufacturing, most jobs are reasonably secure.
I really like this chart (courtesy Brian DeGroodt) . It shows the ups and downs of the stock market (DJIA) since 1928. We aren't even close to the worst it's ever been.
So, like I've been saying, focus on the dream and make room for it to come true. This is a powerful time to get clear about exactly what you want. It's a skill that will serve you in any economic climate.
If you believe that your dreams can't be fulfilled, then they won't be. The hardest time to dream is when everyone says not to.