Tuesday, August 20, 2013

How Digits Kill Jobs

An up close view of digits doing the do
While reading an article about Trader Joe's in an older copy of Fortune Magazine I came across the one-pager to the right.

It tells/shows the cost of a start up company using technology and social media in 2010 compared to what it would have been in 2000.

I don't have any way of verifying the numbers so lets assume they are close enough to make the point - specifically, that the digit is the culprit in the demise of many a job in the US. This is not a new theme here. I'm always on the lookout for examples to highlight and this is a good one.

The cost as shown in the picture is $40,000 Vs a comparable cost of $1,063,500. In other words, the total outlay in 2010 to start this business was 1/4 of what it would have been in 2000.

In each of the five highlighted categories, incorporating, branding, marketing, employees, and rent, the difference is significant. Clearly, the employee category stands out but there are dramatic reductions in all of them. Looked at from the point of view of the supplying businesses (and here's where the lost jobs come in) there was 75% LESS revenue with which to provide jobs.

In examples like this, the digit and the Internet have pushed upward and outward the "bang" from each buck invested. Add to this the Great Recession's acceleration of an already rapid move to even more automation as businesses searched for ways to increase efficiency - just to stay alive.

Should workers displaced by digits and technology have seen this coming? Maybe. But there's no time to waste NOW in getting right with the Marketplace - and the fact that we are all Free Agents.

To kick start your getting right with the Marketplace thinking, here's a few questions to ask yourself today:
  • will my job even exist in 5 years?
  • if so, what are the (honest) chances there will be an increase in salary or wages?
  • if so, will technology add to or reduce the amount of work I am doing now?
  • if not, how and why will the job go away?
  • if not, what can I do NOW to prepare?
Those dared digits ...

Travel well.
John Jeffrey Lundell

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