About pbilodeau01

Born in Berlin, N.H.; bachelor of arts, major in journalism, Northeastern University; master's degree in urban studies, Southern Connecticut State University; was an editor and reporter at New Haven Register, an editor at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and a reporter at The Meriden Record-Journal. Now a freelance writer and editor.

WHY ASIAN PARENTS HAVE THEIR KIDS’ BACKS IN SCHOOL

Why do students of East Asian descent do so well in school? Because parents are the primary educators.
So concludes Maureen Downey, education columnist for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Her column on the subject was published July 31, 2017.
While American parents are concerned with how engaging their child’s teacher is, how much homework their child will have and whether their child will be able to balance school and other activities, such as band or soccer, in East Asian countries, parents are worried about one thing: whether their child will learn, Downey writes.
The Asian children’s success will depend not only on their own effort, but that of their parents, she writes.
That difference may explain the performance gap between American students and those from East Asian countries, Downey writes.
According to a research scholar on East Asian education, this lagging performance by American students will not change unless we upend two beliefs: teachers are responsible for student achievement and parents play a supportive, rather than primary, role in their child’s education, Downey writes.
Cornelius N. Grove, author and researcher on East Asian education, has challenged the assumption that school performance is determined by innate aptitude, Downey writes. He says children bring – or don’t bring, in the case of some U.S. students – a receptiveness to learning and a moral and cultural imperative to excel, Downey writes.
Students who fail an algebra test here might say, “I’m just not good at math,” Downey quotes Grove. East Asian students use failure to figure out what they don’t know and redirect their study plan, Downey quotes Grove.
One could argue that while education is important, so are other things in life. The balance American parents look for in their children is a worthy endeavor. We want children to have a life, to do things that kids do, to enjoy growing up and not be put in a pressure cooker.
On the other hand, some parents can be too loosey-goosey, fret about the child’s self-esteem, etc.
Those old enough may remember when parents sent kids to school, let them figure out what to do, perhaps had one or two conferences a year with teachers and that was it. Some parents were disinclined, or perhaps even incapable, of helping with homework.
Still, “we have masses of young people (In the U.S) who aren’t able to do simple math, who have trouble reading a sentence,” Downey quotes Grove.
Yet, she quotes him, “we are not short of entrepreneurs in this country.” If your child is an entrepreneur, and is looking for something to apply that trait that could earn him potentially a lot of money, there are many vehicles out there that may fit him or her. To check out one of the best, message me.
The bottom line is that parents have to find the happy medium in which their child can excel in school, and still be a kid. The parents have to devote a higher priority on education, and not leave everything up to teachers and schools.
The children have to want to learn. A parent who cultivates a child’s desire to learn is parenting at its best. So let your kids be kids, let them do what they enjoy, yet still have focus on education. Perhaps the parents can take a leading role in increasing school performance of American children.
Peter

YOU ARE YOUR HABITS

#habits #GoodHabits #BadHabits

“Excellence … is not an act, but a habit.”
That Aristotle quote leads off a book called “Habits Die Hard: 10 Steps to Building Successful Habits,” by Mac Anderson and John J. Murphy.
The authors talk about ways not only to build good habits, but to break bad ones.
We think of most habits as bad, such as smoking, overeating, drinking too much etc.
We also think of habits as things we cannot help, or change. The authors disagree.
“Experts worldwide agree that one of the most essential characteristics among successful people is the ability to visualize where they want to be in the future,” the authors write.
“This powerful practice elicits passion and conviction, and if the vision is shared, … it inspires teamwork,” they write.
They apply that success principle to habits – replacing bad ones with good ones. “There are always options. We just have to let go of one to allow another,” they write.
Changing one’s belief changes one’s thinking. And changing one’s thinking can change one’s life, the book says.
Since we can all visualize bad habits, let’s see whether we can do the same with good ones.
Living above one’s means is a bad habit. Saving money out of every paycheck for one’s retirement is the corresponding good habit.
Overeating is a bad habit. It usually happens when one continues eating when he is full, or eats when he’s not hungry. Eating in moderation at mealtime, or until one is full, is a good habit. We can break it down further on what the best foods are, but if you are, say, a choco-holic, indulge your habit selectively and lightly.
Let’s go back to that quote from the book about success. Success is built on good habits. It’s also built on being able to visualize where one wants to be in the future.
In other words, if you’ve been taught not to dream, to accept your life the way it is, etc., it may be time to change your thinking.
When you visualize where you want to be, you are dreaming. That’s not only OK, it’s encouraged by experts on success.
If where you are now is not where you want to be in the future, and you are willing to look at something that may get you closer to where you want to be, there are many such vehicles out there to help you get to that place. To check out one of the best, message me.
In summary, you may have to adopt better habits to be successful. You may have to learn to visualize where you want to be and look for a way to get you there.
The book offers exercises in writing down bad habits, or a habit you have that you want to break. Habits are NOT permanent, not engrained, not carved into one’s brain.
But they may require one to change his way of thinking, if they are keeping him from succeeding. Only you know what you need to change to make you better.
Don’t let those who would urge you to settle for mediocrity influence your habits. The power to visualize is the power to change.
Peter

PARENTS’ INCOME MAY INFLUENCE KIDS’ EARNINGS

#income #ParentsIncome #earnings
“If you’re born poor, you die poor.”
That’s according to a United Kingdom politician from six years ago. The quote leads off an article by Michael Heath Bloomberg published in the Aug. 30,2017, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The article says little has changed in those six years. Great Britain, France, Italy and the U.S. continue to show a high correlation between parents’ earnings and those of their children, the article quotes a report by Standard Life Investments. The Scandinavian countries, Australia, Germany and Canada show a similar correlation, but to a lesser extent, the article says.
As a result, human capital is wasted and workers are less motivated, the article says. Higher levels of inequality in earnings stunts economic growth, the article says, quoting research.
Let’s think about this. Perhaps children go into the same, or similar, professions as their parents. More likely, however, parents probably have told their kids that their potential is limited because of finances, innate ability etc. How many have been advised by parents, or other trusted elders, to seek security, rather than follow dreams?
The article says researchers tracked the proportion of 30-year-olds who earned more than their parents did at that age, and found a significant downtrend: just 50 percent of children born in the 1980s earned more than their parents at the same age, compared with nearly 80 percent of 1950s-born kids, the article says.
Another figure the article quotes: in the American Midwest, just 41 percent of children born in 1984 earned more than their parents at the same age, compared with 95 percent of those born in 1940.
Certainly, decline in manufacturing, as the article says, has much to do with that. Inflation is certainly another factor. People working in the 1940s and 1950s were paid much less than their children would earn. But wage stagnation is real. And it’s obvious in just about every industrialized country.
So what to do? Most everyone could sense this problem that the article actually quantified. The security that one’s parents may have advised their children to seek is just not there. A young person today – even some who’ve invested in a college education – can expect, unless he or she is truly fortunate, that his job and career he starts with will change, or end, before he wants it to.
And the change that happens usually means more work for less money, or having to take a new job that pays less.
There are ways to combat this. First, don’t be afraid to change careers. See what the market is looking for, learn the appropriate skills, and change. Second, save your money. That may require forgoing frivolous pleasures so that you can bank, and properly invest, money over time. The time trajectory, remember, may not have a person working to age 65. It may only last until, say, age 45.
Finally, be open to checking out different ways to make money. Perhaps you are unaware of the many good ways to make money that have nothing to do with a W-2 job. To check out one of the best, message me.
Though the article paints a gloomy income picture, it doesn’t have to be that way. It may take a desire to want a better life, a willingness to looking at things that may look uncomfortable and a belief that YOU can ultimately control your own situation.
The security your parents may have told you to seek is likely imaginary. Therefore, not only is there no harm in pursing your dream, there could be a real benefit to doing so. Remember, too, that pursuing a dream can also allow you to help others do the same.
Peter

STUDENT LOAN DEBT KILLING ECONOMY FOR SOME

#StudentLoans #StudentLoanDebt #economy #college
Imagine having your dream job, after a great education, and yet be broke.
That is the case with Melissa Cefalu, a veterinarian, and her husband Andrew, a chiropractor.
You see, Melissa and Andrew are buried under $365,000 in student loan debt.
Paul Davidson highlighted their story in his USA Today article about how student loan debt is hurting the U.S. economy. It was also published in the July 7, 2017, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Melissa and Andrew never take vacations. They may grab a long weekend with friends or relatives. Andrew drives a 13-year-old Chevy Tahoe. Instead of buying new clothes, Melissa, 35, wears her sister’s hand-me-downs, according to Davidson’s article.
The $1.34 trillion in student loan debt, a record high, is affecting the overall economy, Davidson writes. It’s causing delays in home purchases, it’s crimping consumer spending and inhibiting formation of new businesses, the article quotes analysts. He quotes others as saying the student loan debt crisis is no more than a lot of hype.
“I love what I do but … I don’t feel my degree was worth the sacrifices we have to make every single day,” the article quotes Melissa Cefalu. The couple, between them, makes $125,000 a year, and lives in affordable Madison, Miss.
Let’s break this down further. We’ve all heard about the excessive student loan debt, and the debate rages on about how to fix the problem. Should we, as a nation bail out these loans, or should we let the people who incurred the debt take their medicine – probably for a lifetime?
At the rate they are going, Melissa and Andrew will probably never be able to save for a house, let alone retirement, for a good long time. Theirs is a lesson for others thinking about whether college will be worth what they will have to do financially to get through.
And the Mississippi couple’s example shows that even if you come out of college with a decent job, doing what you had always wanted, debt can punch you in the gut for many years. Think about the graduate who comes out of college with no job, AND lots of debt.
Statistics repeatedly show that the more education one has, the better his job prospects. Still, the decision whether to go to college should not be automatic, even for the brightest of students.
There are many different ways to approach the problem. Consider these options: if a student is college material, but his family cannot afford to send him, he could work for a few years at a relatively menial job, i.e. a restaurant server, and save his money to go to college later in life. That same student could take that menial job, and take some college courses part time over a few years until he has the money to go to school full time.
Secondly, a student could consider military service for a few years, presuming he is physically able for that. The service may entitle him to college benefits after he serves his tour of duty.
Thirdly, a student may decide to look for a vehicle that will provide him enough income to eventually give him a world of educational options, without incurring a lifetime of debt. To check out one of the best such vehicles, message me.
Regardless of how you may feel about student loan debt, and how it may be affecting the economy, consider this: if a student incurs debt that would surpass a mortgage, that student will not be able to do much of anything financially for a good long time. He or she could grow old and broke, with very little help to get out of their situation.
If you don’t want to be among those folks, think long and hard about whether, and when, to go to college. College is not for everybody, and for those who are ripe for college academically, but not financially, it’s still not a decision to be made without lots of thought.
He who properly thinks through the college decision will likely see the most success as a productive adult.
Peter

MONEY CAN BUY HAPPINESS: REALLY?

#MoneyCanBuyHappiness #time #money
“If you were given $40 on the condition that you had to spend it on something that would make you really happy, what would you do with the money?”
So asks Jenna Gallegos, who discussed time and money in an article in The Washington Post. The article also was published July 30, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The answer to the above question would be different for just about everyone. Some would buy a piece of their favorite food or beverage. Some would buy that shiny, new object they’ve had their eyes on. Some wise folk might decide to put it in the bank, postponing their happiness for another few years.
Gallegos quotes a study published in the journal PNAS, saying people who buy time by paying someone to complete a household task are more satisfied with life.
We all have a to-do list that includes tasks that someone else can do better and faster than we. If it’s going to take you several days to, say, paint a room, but a professional painter can come in and knock out that job in a few hours, would that be worth it to you?
OK, some folks love to paint, garden, mow the lawn or do household and auto repairs themselves. For many of us, though, those are drudge tasks, or tasks we cannot accomplish ourselves competently. For some people, the “challenge” of doing something themselves rather than paying someone else to do it allows them to brag about it to friends and family.
Gallegos might ask: are those people in that latter category really happy? Across all surveys, Gallegos writes, life satisfaction was typically higher when people spent money to save their time – regardless of their household income, hours worked (at their regular job) per week, marital status and number of children living at home. (Disclaimer: very few with extremely low incomes were surveyed, Gallegos points out).
The point here is that time is money. Most leadership and motivational experts say you should devote the largest percentage of your (work) time to the things YOU do best. The rest, if possible, should be delegated. There’s a trap here, too. Those same experts might also advise that you not ask anyone who works for you, or with you, to do anything you would not do, talking about those menial, yet necessary tasks to get the job done.
So, for the sake of argument, we won’t focus on those work-related things. We’ll focus on tasks you must do in your time outside of work.
Gallegos cites another study, in which 60 working adults in Vancouver were given $40 on each of two consecutive weekends. They were told to spend that money on a material purchase one weekend, and a time-saving purpose another. The researchers found the time-saving purchases were accompanied by an increased positive effect, and less time stress, Gallegos writes.
Yet in another Vancouver study group of 98 working adults, they were asked how they would spend $40 if it were given to them. Only 2% said they would buy more time, Gallegos writes.
In short, time is indeed money and using your money to buy more time for you to do things you enjoy creates happiness. There are many folks out there who have a combination of not enough money and not enough time to enjoy life. If that description fits you, and you are willing to check out something outstanding that will solve your money/time problems, message me.
Understand that time can’t be replaced. You should be spending the bulk of your time doing things YOU do best, if you can. You should maximize your leisure time doing things that please you the most. It will make you happier.
Money CAN buy happiness, if you use it to purchase time.
Peter

MOST PEOPLE AREN’T SAVING ENOUGH FOR RETIREMENT

#retirement #pensions #savings
Most everyone knows or suspects that people aren’t saving enough for a decent retirement.
But a World Economic Forum report spells it out: People are living longer. Investment returns have been disappointing. Therefore, within three decades there will be a $400 trillion shortfall worldwide in retirement savings.
The report was cited in an article by Katherine Chiglinsky for Bloomberg News. It was published June 4, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The shortfall includes a $224 trillion gap among the six large pension-savings systems: the U.S., U.K., Japan, the Netherlands, Canada and Australia, the article quotes the report.
Employers have been moving away from pensions and offering defined-contribution plans, which include 401(k)s, and individual retirement accounts. Those categories make up about 50 percent of global retirement assets, Chiglinksy writes.
The report warned that the savings shortfall in the U.S. is growing at a rate of $3 trillion a year, and may climb at an annual rate of 7 percent in China and 10 percent in India – countries with aging populations, growing middle classes and a higher percentage of workers in informal sectors, Chiglinsky writes.
So, how are you set for your retirement?
Have you got a pension lined up? If so, it’s entirely possible that it won’t be there when you are ready to take it, or it could be reduced.
Social Security by itself won’t let you live a decent life. And, if Washington doesn’t act, benefits could be reduced eventually. Many experts say we needn’t fear that Social Security will go away entirely. But benefit reductions are a possibility in a few decades.
Think of your retirement planning this way: if it is to be, it’s up to ME.
If you are young, and just starting your career, make retirement savings a priority. If you aren’t raking in big bucks, start with a small percentage of what you are making. Put that money away. Don’t touch it!
Once your savings have grown to an investible amount, say, a few thousand dollars, get it out of your bank savings account and put it into something that will pay you higher rates. Get good advice from a financial planner that you trust. You may want to start with fairly safe – everything outside of insured bank deposits carry some risk – investments, and diversify more as your money grows.
If you are older, you need to put more of what you earn into retirement savings. Young folks have lots of time to balance gains and losses. Middle-aged folks have much less time. Talk to a financial planner about you goals, and let him or her guide you as to how much to save, and in what vehicles to invest.
Of course, cutting spending is a must. Increasing income may give you a leg up on your retirement savings. To learn about one of best vehicles for doing both, message me.
In short, you can take matters into your own hands. It’s all about setting priorities, making good choices and sticking to your plan.
Whatever you sacrifice now, be it $100 a month in lattes, taking too many expensive trips etc., will pay you back in spades when your job goes away. And you don’t have to live in complete deprivation to do it.
Just look for value in what you buy, and make good choices in how you save.
Peter

GROCERY SHOPPING SHIFTS IN MODERN ERA

#GroceryDelivery #groceries #Amazon
Wes Moss saw the future of the grocery industry show up at his front door in the person of Rena, who was delivering his family’s groceries.
Moss, who writes a Money Matters column for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, ordered his groceries through a service called SHIPT. Rena, as it turned out, was his personal shopper.
Moss discussed his experience, and the future of the grocery industry, in a column published July 4, 2017.
Long before Amazon bought Whole Foods, Nielson had predicted that by 2025, nearly 20 percent of all grocery shopping will be done on-demand, Moss writes.
He recently tested the SHIPT service to see whether it could deliver a full week’s grocery list for the Moss family. Rena told Moss that she does as many as six to eight full-scale shops per day, earning wages and tips. Rena loves grocery shopping, Moss writes.
SHIPT employs tens of thousands of shoppers across the country. If the personal shopper model takes off, it could create a significant number of jobs, Moss writes.
Traditional grocery jobs may be replaced by more technologically centered roles, Moss writes. When ATMs came on the scene, it was feared the bank teller jobs would evaporate. The number of teller jobs actually increased from 500,000 to 550,000, Moss writes.
The point Moss is making is that old jobs may disappear, but, at least in some industries, they will be replaced by a different kind of job.
Many out there had good, “old” jobs. Those good, “old” jobs, in many cases, have either disappeared, or are about to disappear, before those who have them are ready to retire.
Complaining about the trend, or trying to force industry to resist such trends, is like complaining about the weather. You can’t stop progress, and, though people get hurt in the short run, good people usually end up on their feet – or even better off than they were.
Lamenting wastes energy that could be used to figure out what one should do next. Should he train for one of those “new” jobs in his industry? That may depend on one’s age, and how much he likes the industry he’s in.
If he’s like Moss’ Rena and loves grocery shopping, he may want to adapt to the new trend in whatever industry he’s grown to like. Or, he may literally become a personal shopper.
For some, though, it may be a chance to check out something new. There are many excellent ways to earn money without having a regular, W-2 job. To learn about one of the best such vehicles, message me.
Some of us see changing trends, downsizing etc. as evil. Perhaps it will turn some people’s lives upside down. But, like a fast-moving train with a weak brake, it’s difficult, if not impossible, to stop. Companies need to be flexible and nimble with the fast changes.
To those who work for such companies, your energy is better spent working on your next move than complaining about or resisting the inevitable.
Rena took good care of Moss and his family, he writes. She did so with a smile and lots of energy. He writes that it left him with a positive outlook on the future of food consumption.
A positive outlook on the future, whatever it holds for you, is the first step to improving your life.
Peter

BOOMERANG KIDS COME BACK TO CHANGE PARENTS’ LIVES

#BoomerangKids @AdultsLivingWithParents #EmptyNest
“Boomerang kids.”
These are the young adult children who move back home with Mom and Dad either because they don’t want, or can’t afford, to live on their own.
Of parents whose adult children returned in the last year, 68 percent reported more stress, and 53 percent said they were less happy.
That’s according to an article by Erin Arvedlund for The Philadelphia Inquirer. The article was also published Aug. 7, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
One in nine parents surveyed by Fidelity and Stanford University’s Center on Longevity reported having children who moved back home in adulthood, the article says.
Not only were most of the parents more stressed and less happy about that, 46 percent of mothers reported worse sleeping and weight gain, the article quotes the study.
The study, as quoted in the article, also reports that more 18- to 35-year-olds live with parents than with a spouse.
To prevent adult children from moving home, some parents are resorting to buying houses for the children, the article says.
It may be oversimplification to pinpoint causes for this, but let’s start with the economy. After the 2008 meltdown, jobs, even for young people, became scarcer. Those that did get jobs don’t make the kind of money to would allow them to live on their own.
The article also points out that some of these adult children are moving back with children of their own, so divorce, or having children outside of marriage, plays a part.
It’s hard for many of us in a different generation even resorting to moving back home for any length of time, no matter the circumstances. But these younger folks don’t see it as a problem, perhaps because their life at home was so good.
As Kelly Yamanouchi reported in the Oct. 24, 2017, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the average pay for Delta Air Lines flight attendants is $25,000 a year. It’s tough for a young adult to pay rent, eat and otherwise have a decent life today on that salary.
It still begs the question of how one has a social life around Mom and Dad, and how Mom and Dad work a social life around adult kids at home.
From the parents’ viewpoint, money that you give to your children is money you probably won’t have to retire on.
Undoubtedly, it’s not an easy decision to turn away your children in times of trouble. Many of them don’t have the opportunities for earning a living that their parents had, because there are fewer good jobs.
If you are a young adult contemplating moving home, for financial reasons or otherwise, remember that there are more ways to make an income, potentially a great income, than a W-2 job. To check out one of the best, message me.
If you are a parent getting set to take in an adult child, try to discern the real reason they want to move home, and try to help them find an alternative – perhaps short of buying them a house – to moving back home.
Parents and adult children living under one roof can create so much tension, simply because each has his or her own way of doing things. Neither parents nor children need that stress.
It’s good for adults to live on their own when possible. It helps the economy and society as a whole. Make sure that if you have to move back in with Mom and Dad, that it will be very temporary, and for the right reasons.
Peter

ECONOMICS: A MATTER OF CHOICE

#economics #NobelPrizeForEconomics #RichardThaler #BehavioralEconomics
People make poor choices about money.
That may seem obvious to some, but Richard Thaler of the University of Chicago has made a career of studying people’s economic behavior. He was rewarded last week with the Nobel Prize in economics.
“Far from being the rational decision makers described in economic theory, Thaler found, people often make decisions that run counter to their best interests,” write David Keyton and Jim Heintz of the Associated Press. Their article on Thaler’s prize was published Oct. 10, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“To contain the damage from such collective actions (like not saving enough for retirement, buying houses as prices soared, or failing to get out of a bad investment even as the value plummets etc.), behavioral economists say, policy-makers must recognize human irrationality,” the reporters write.
Irrationality is part of being human. It applies not only to economic decisions, but also other life choices. Everyone knows smoking is bad for you, yet there are still people smoking. Everyone can cite all the foods that are bad for them, but eat those foods anyway.
Not everyone makes bad decisions all the time, and not every “bad” decision is terribly consequential. But a pattern of bad decisions over time – or just one bad decision made consistently over time – can be detrimental, even disastrous.
It hardly takes a Nobel laureate to figure out that if one does not save for his retirement, his life will be worse for it.
There’s good news in all of this. The world has created ways to perhaps compensate for bad economic decisions – ways that don’t involve someone, or something, bailing someone out.
There are actual ways to earn extra money, perhaps even lots of extra money, by spending a few non-working hours a week in their pursuit. To learn about one of the best such vehicles, message me.
One always can put himself on a path to good economic decision-making. It boils down to spend less, save more and, to continue borrowing from consumer adviser Clark Howard’s tagline, “don’t get ripped off.”
It requires discipline, of course. It requires rational thinking throughout your life. It requires watching where every penny goes. Yes, even a few pennies saved here and there can add up over time.
It requires thinking less about today, and more about tomorrow, and years from now. That may be difficult to do as a young adult, just starting to build a life. You’ll have expenses, family etc., that will cost you money. But a good way to start is by saving a specific amount every week – even, say, $5.
Save it and don’t think about spending it. As your pay at work increases, save that increase. As your savings grow, get good trusted advice about how to invest it.
Thaler joked to the AP reporters that he would spend his Nobel Prize money “as irrationally as possible.”
“In traditional economic theory, it’s a silly question,” Thaler told the reporters. “And the reason is that money doesn’t come with labels. So once that (Nobel) money is in my bank, how do I know whether that fancy bottle of wine I’m buying (is being paid for by) Nobel money or some other kind of money?” he told the reporters.
In other words, money is money. When it is put into our hands, being a good steward of it is essential. That’s not to say that we can’t have a nice bottle of wine, or some other treat, once in a while. We need SOME irrationality in our lives just to be human. It gets dangerous, though, when one allows irrationality to always trump rationality.
Peter

UPS IS ADDING JOBS, BUT FOR HOW LONG?

#UPS #OnlineShopping #AddedJobs
UPS is “hiring like crazy” because of the growth in e-commerce. “I’ve never seen jobs get added at UPS like it has in the last year,” says Eric Massaro, a shop stewards for the Teamsters union at a UPS sorting facility in Roswell, Ga.
Massaro was quoted in an article by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Kelly Yamanouchi, published Aug. 25, 2017.
In addition to adding people, UPS is adding technology to help it get packages delivered more quickly, with fewer mistakes and greater efficiency, the article says.
The UPS situation illustrates how a decline in some brick-and-mortar retail businesses can turn in to a boon elsewhere.
UPS also had to add Saturday delivery, because people shop online on weekends and the packages back up on Mondays, the article says.
UPS is also trying to nudge customers to pick up their own packages at various locations, to save time for its drivers, the article says.
Let’s examine the UPS situation from a different perspective. Right now, it’s hiring – “good-paying jobs with benefits,” the article quotes Massaro. The workers are putting in long hours which, if you are unemployed, could make you jealous.
But what the article does not discuss is what technology could do to a lot of those jobs 10 or 20 years hence.
Think driverless vehicles, better sorting and loading technology, deliveries to homes by drones, etc. And let’s not forget that Amazon is testing its own delivery service, which could affect UPS directly. Yamanouchi reported on that in the Oct. 6, 2017, edition. The trend at UPS could be good if you don’t have many more years left to work. If you are just starting out, though, think long and hard about what you will do.
Most jobs undergo change whether the person doing them changes or not. Companies have to be flexible and nimble enough to change quickly, as situations change. Therefore, companies will need to have less structure and more technology to allow them to change more quickly.
The article says that UPS has increased its technology already, but still needs even more people. That’s good news for those looking for work today. Working at UPS for a few years could get you over the hump, if you’ve lost a good job and are having trouble finding another one.
But a wise person will also be looking at a Plan B – something he could do a few hours a week when he’s not working at, say, UPS. There are many such vehicles out there for those willing to look for them. To check out one of the best, message me. You might even see something that will allow you to do online shopping and save money, too.
It is not as easy being a working person today, as it was several decades ago. Change came more slowly then, and that allowed people to finish out careers and retire when they were ready. Today, that is almost unheard of. People are often forced out of jobs long before retirement age and are banished to a job market that doesn’t want them.
Thanks goodness companies like UPS need people. But one could mistakenly think that its need for people will be everlasting. That kind of thinking might be a mistake.
Using the retailers’ example again, there was a time when some retailers could not keep up with demand in their stores. As fast as goods came in, they were bought.
Today, many of those same retailers are struggling, because of e-commerce and other reasons. Don’t let this sudden demand for help by UPS allow you to think it won’t go away. Many good things like this usually do. Be ready, so if the rug is pulled out from under you, you can have a puffy pad to land on.
Peter