27 July 2009

American workplaces undergoing change

2009 has already seen remarkable changes in the American workplace. The Great Recession has prompted more lay-offs than we're accustomed to, more cost-saving measures than any office likes to see, and furloughs that will soon stop feeling like vacations and start feeling like pay cuts.

What could change it more? A voluntary exodus by employees who will happily take their chances on becoming independent contractors (instead of full-time employees) if they have access to guaranteed health care insurance. I would need several hands to count the number of boomer women I know who "work for the bennies" for themselves and (for some) their spouses.

I asked Tom Bold yesterday if he thought that described boomer men, too. He agreed: former colleagues are already making the comparison between full-time work and three-quarter-time (contract) work, but with that matter of health insurance keeping them on a job. That job is becoming more and more demanding as lay-offs continue so the prospect of working from home, whether for one client or several, is becoming more and more attractive.

Such an exodus could be a brain drain from the employer's perspective but could also be a solution for balance sheets that are currently hurting. Some employers might find out for the first time what really attracts talent to their companies. And some might find out what percentage of workers were responsible for what percentage of productivity.

And a whole lot of boomers might find their adjustment to the recession a whole lot happier.

© 2009 Mary Bold, PhD, CFLE. The content of this blog or related web sites created by Mary Bold (www.marybold.com, www.boldproductions.com, College Intern Blog) is not under any circumstances to be regarded as professional, legal, financial, or medical advice. Or education advice. Or marital advice. Or even a tip.

No comments: