Gen Y Workers and the Labor Market: Tables Turned?

Remember how Generation Y workers thought they didn’t have to work their father’s 9-to-5 shift? That they wanted flexibility in their jobs? That they valued friendships and feedback over a steady check? That employers needed to learn new strategies in order to cope with (coddle) these sensitive world-changers?

In this job market we wonder, “Yeah. How’s that working out for them?”

It was this article that got us thinking. It’s another of those “How to deal with and attract Gen Y workers” stories that now seems as if it were written in an alternate universe.

With unemployment on the rise and cutbacks everywhere, shouldn’t Gen Y be lucky to have the job they have, so much so that employers need not sweat catering to their every need?

Just wondering.

(An version of this post also appear on The Ladder at ArkansasBusiness.com.)

UPDATED: How-to: Tweet Your Way Out of a Job

Twitter is awesome! But it can also get you in trouble with judges and possible employers.

This horrifying exchange, as noted by a fellow WordPress blogger at I’m Not Actually a Geek:

A lucky job applicant tweeted the following:

“Cisco just offered me a job! Now I have to weigh the utility of a fatty paycheck against the daily commute to San Jose and hating the work.”

This tweet caught the attention of Tim Levad, a channel partner advocate for Cisco. To which he responded:

“Who is the hiring manager. I’m sure they would love to know that you will hate the work. We here at Cisco are versed in the web.”

Ouch! The person who dissed the Cisco offer quickly took their Twitter account private. But Twitter search retained the record.

You kids better be careful out there on the Interwebs.

I’m watching my mouth here.

(A version of this post appeared on The Ladder @ ArkansasBusiness.com.)

Update: No sooner did we post this entry, did we see the Arkansas Times’ note on the resignation of Batesville Chamber of Commerce Director Jonah Shumate. This, after he posted some pointed political views to the chamber’s official Twitter account, which, according to our Arkansas Twitter Guide, was located here. It has of course been taken down.

Apparently, some Democratic members of the chamber learned of the Republican-leaning posts. After a meeting on the matter last night, Shumate resigned, according to the Times.

Shumate began at the chamber in 2007. He was apparently one of the youngest ever to hold the position. Them kids and their Twitters!


Video: How the Recession Can Affect Your Career

The recession and your career

The recession and your career

On “Today’s THV This Morning” today I talked to Alyson Courtney about how the recession can affect your career.

You can see video of the segment here.

The segment is based on this piece by staffing firm Robert Half International, which notes the many ways the economic downtown will likely affect your job.

Apart from the obvious threat of layoffs and benefit cuts, there’s the possibility of changes to your job description as companies struggle to do more with fewer workers. In this case, it’s important to remain open to learning new skills and taking on new challenges, even if some of these tasks are outside your comfort zone.

The upside, of course, is that you’ll learn new skills, making you a more valuable worker when (when!) the economy strengthens. And you might even be able to move up within your company, as employers decide against hiring new employees and look within for new leaders.

Video of the segment here, the article here and more careers advice here. And don’t forget our Jobs section on ArkansasBusiness.com here, where you can post your resume and search for Arkansas jobs, all for free.

(Another version of this post appears on The Ladder blog.)

The Ladder: Should I ‘Friend’ My Boss on Facebook?

Talkin' FB w/ Alyson

Talkin' FB w/ Alyson

It’s an almost Seinfeldian dilemma. Do you accept a friend request from your boss on Facebook? What if you choose “ignore”? Or, what if you put them on “limited profile”? Is that just as insulting as a straight ignore? Or would leaving the request unanswered be worse?

It makes your head spin. But it’s a little decision that many of us are confronted with everyday as more and more co-workers and professional contacts find one another on Facebook.

So what do you do? Well, it depends!

Alyson Courtney and I talk it over on “Today’s THV This Morning.” Click here for video. And click here to view my Ladder post on this New Media Minefield of Etiquette.

More Online Job Hunting Tips

I appeared on “Today’s THV This Morning” today to share some general online job hunting tips. Because there’s so much you can’t cram into a two-and-a-half-minute segment, I posted all my notes here on The Ladder. And I’ll post video of the segment as soon as it’s available.

5 Résumé Don’ts on KARN’s ‘First News with Bob Steel’

I had a great time on KARN Newsradio 920’s “First News with Bob Steel” this morning. On the show, I shared some common mistakes people make on their résumés and how to avoid them.

Most of the tips I took from The Ladder, a young professionals and careers blog I write for the mothership. As promised, I compiled my notes from today’s radio segment and posted them on The Ladder here.

Later this afternoon, I’ll link to a recording of the interview, once it’s posted on KARN’s On Demand page.

Updated: Here’s the recording of my segment on the show. (You can also download it here.)

Questions About the Bailout, and How We Got Here

Now that Congress has voted down the one solid plan we had to address the credit crisis here in the U.S., lot of folks are wondering where we go from here. And many of those same folks are worried about what this means to them and their money.

First, the crisis itself. Hindsight is 20/20, of course, but signs that we were heading for something bad have been there for a while. Two local investment advisors warned about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the pages of Arkansas Business four years ago:

We believe the time has come to bust up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have become the final guarantors of the bulk of the residential mortgage debt in this country.

These huge entities perhaps have the strongest lobbying groups in Washington, so the job will require much fortitude and tenacity.

Not long ago, our country went through a financial crisis in home mortgage finance with the savings and loan business.

The federal government was called in to pay off the guaranteed liabilities (the insured deposits) and to make an orderly liquidation of the assets.

Fast forward to today. We have Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have taken the place of the savings and loan industry from a financing perspective.

Thus, the potential hazard of guaranteed deposits that existed in the S&L business has been transferred to these two behemoths. Fannie and Freddie have taken the risk and run with it, leveraging their balance sheets to a point where any sober observer would consider both undercapitalized.

A multitude of mortgage originators has taken the place of S&Ls on the asset side. Many are barely capitalized operations that simply collect an origination fee and transfer the risk to Fannie and Freddie.

Sounds familiar, eh?

Fast forward to 2007-2008. MSNBC shows us how this year unfolded, tracking statements by Congressional members and financial leaders alongside unemployment rates and Dow Jones levels, via this neat interactive chart. Early last year was when we began to see bankruptcies from some of the largest mortgage lenders in the country, whose sub-prime mortgages began to go bad as people couldn’t make their payments.

That’s led to the wave upon wave of bad economic news, and brings us where we are this week. Yesterday’s (in)action by Congress was dramatic, but on the whole not surprising, considering the outcry from “Main Street” that taxpayer dollars shouldn’t go to a multi-bllion dollar bailout plan for Wall Street.

On KTHV at 6 p.m. Monday, Craig O’Neill and I talked about what that bailout plan might have done, had it been approved. Click here to see the video.

So now what? Because of a Jewish holiday, Congress doesn’t meet again until Thursday. Will Monday’s bailout plan come up for another vote, or will an alternate plan emerge? That remains to be seen.

Meanwhile, what do you do with your money? More on that after the jump.

Continue reading