I wish I could find a lovely place to send job descriptions to die.
You know what I want instead? Job clouds.
Doesn't that sound lovely?
A job cloud is a lovely, puffy arrangement of projects and functions that need to be completed in order for a company to be successful. Job clouds can overlap across functional areas as the needs of the company change and the people in each cloud can change as their experience and education increase.
So what happens when a new client or project comes on the scene? GO TO THE CLOUD...Ah yes, take a look at all the employees whose availability, personality and current experience makes them a good candidate to successfully engage and offer them the opportunity to participate in something new. GADZOOKS! They might LEARN SOMETHING! You might learn something from them! That's so crazy.
I know one of my fantastic left-brained friends would want to organize the cloud into tidy project lists and start assigning agendas, building committees and the like, but let's not over-document the thing. The beauty and the success is in the movement and ever-changing nature of the cloud. I envision implementation to involve something more like a web-based database where employees update their own profile with new skills. Failure to do so means you're not really interested in contributing in new ways, so maybe you could be encouraged to go to a less interesting company. Managers could update project lists and define necessary education and/or experience for a successful outcome. Employees could apply for projects as they become available and/or managers could proactively seek out talent. Corporate recruiting would focus on strategically identifying gaps between existing talent and upcoming project needs, then bring in new talent or devise training/professional development programs to fill the needs.
That IT guy who barely talks might have an amazing eye for color and/or create ridiculously fresh marketing campaigns. Your recruiter might love numbers and just want to do a little finance sometimes. In the end, you get consistently challenged employees who view their role as making the company successful by contributing in new ways, instead of the "that's not in my job description" mentality. And maybe it'd be a
way of re-labeling some of those so-called bad hires. Maybe the person wasn't a bad hire, maybe they should be contributing in a different way that originally anticipated. These personnel adjustments wouldn't be as hard to absorb if a variety of projects were regularly available for assignment.
I know it would take a unique company to be able to transition to this effectively, but I'm a dreamer. Head in the clouds kind of girl here. Still, as people redefine their expectations of the workplace, I think it's the future.