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People bought The 100 Best because they felt, "if I just get a job with one of these companies, I'll be set for life." But once I ...
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People bought The 100 Best because they felt, "if I just get a job with one of these companies, I'll be set for life." But once I realized that not even the best companies could offer job security, I began to ask, "How can individuals create job security amid such a changing market?"
Here's a simple fact: 80 per cent of the technology we will use in our day to day lives in just 10 years hasn't been invented yet! Don't believe this? Well, my six pound computer notebook has more raw computing power than IBM's largest mainframe of only 15 years ago - but notebook computers didn't exist 10 years ago! Netscape didn't exist prior to 1994 - and in November 1998 it was sold for $4.3 billion. The web is radically changing all businesses - and e-commerce is predicted to grow to $3.25 trillion by 2003.
In the past, a secure job came from working for a large, stable organization, preferably a monopoly or market leader in a stable industry. The longer your service (seniority in a union), higher your rank or the more specialized your knowledge or function, the more secure you were.
But today, everything that used to create security now creates insecurity! Large companies have been the largest net job losers in the '90's. Stable companies in stable industries are facing stiff competition from new challengers as a result of digitization, deregulation and globalization. Monopolies are crumbling. Even governments are outsourcing. Old-style unions that resist new practices decrease their members' security. Workers who haven't learned new skills in 25 years are more likely to get a pink slip than a gold watch. And if you have your PhD you likely know a lot about outdated stuff.
Job security today is based on learning, changing and accepting uncertainty. Paradoxically these are what we as adults fear the most! We have moved from a knowledge-based to a learning-based economy. This is the theme of The Learning Paradox. —Jim Harris
Posted April 23, 2001
In 'The Learning Paradox,' Jim Harris weaves together topics including leadership, customer service, value, economy, information, technology, learning organizations, and environment. He shows how the current economy is changing the relationships between customers, organizations, employees, and managers. 'The Learning Paradox' is dedicated to helping organizations and individuals adapt to this economy. Harris divides twelve chapters into two parts. In Part I, Harris examines the paradoxes between the 'Old Rules' and the 'New Rules'. He discusses how security is now based on adaptability, not stability. He writes entire chapters on how leaders can become Problem-Finders and Opportunity Seekers, how to create sustainable enterprises, and how to create value within organizations. Part II is dedicated to the shifts in thinking required for an organization to thrive in the changing economy. He practices what he preaches in the value-added department: he includes discussion questions with these chapters. Readers can share the chapters with their teams and use these questions to discuss their organization's future. Harris fills his book with case studies and examples of how some organizations already are shifting gears, taking advantage of technological advances, and adding value for their employees and customers. His research is carefully documented and end-noted so his readers can easily learn more if they like. Harris' writing style is straight-forward and very easy to read. This book has been very useful for me in thinking about our organization's needs and future.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.