HOW ABOUT ANYONE DOING ANY JOB?

More men are expected to be attracted to “women’s jobs” in the coming years.
However, the reverse is not proving to be a trend.
That’s according to research by Jed Kolko, economist at the job-search site Indeed. His study was quoted in an article by Ana Swanson in the Washington Post. It was also published in the April 23, 2017, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Kolko concludes that less-educated men may especially face challenges in the job market of the future, the article says.
“In recent decades, fields that are dominated by men and by women have not fared equally. Many men have fallen out of work as increased mechanization has allowed the U.S. to produce more agricultural and manufacturing goods than ever, with fewer people than before,” the article says.
“Jobs that are dominated by women are projected to grow nearly twice as fast as jobs that are dominated by men,” the article quotes the Kolko study, based on figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“Fast-growing ‘male’ jobs that require lots of education don’t really help men without a college degree who have been in traditionally ‘male’ jobs,” the article quotes Kolko.
We all have an idea what a “male” job – construction, manufacturing, mining, farming etc. –or a “female job” – nursing, administrative assistant, etc. –is. The article says that computer programming was once dominated by women, but is now heavily male.
It’s been reported many times that men fared worse in the Great Recession than women. The good jobs done largely by men went away more quickly than those done mostly by women.
Kolko points out that some “female” jobs, such as telephone operaters and textile workers, also have been automated out, according to the article.
The broader trend is away from manufacturing and more toward services, which could draw men into jobs traditionally dominated by women, the article says.
So let’s step back and examine this. Good jobs in general are disappearing quickly. Lots of folks, if they are lucky to find new jobs, generally are getting paid less than their previous jobs paid them. Many are not using the skills they were trained for. Those skills, largely, are being replaced by machines. There’s nothing a person can do to stop that!
But what a person CAN do is think about other ways to make money. There are many such vehicles out there for those willing to step out of what’s comfortable, and look at something different. To learn about one of the best such vehicles, message me.
The economy, the recession, downsizing – however you wish to think about it – is not something that will, or can, go away. So, if such circumstances hit you, don’t beat yourself up. Sure, those circumstances will hurt, but by further beating yourself, the pain will be worse.
Americans can be very resilient. Sometimes, tough circumstances require bold action. Sometimes, one has to think differently to better himself.
If you view yourself as a hard-working person, and most do, don’t expect someone to give you something. You may have to look for other opportunities, perhaps completely unrelated to what you’ve done before.
So whether you’ve been doing a “male” job, or a “female” job, and it has gone away, remember that someone you know, or may not yet know, may introduce you to something you may have never heard of. Listen. Don’t dismiss out of hand. You could be hearing about the light at the end of your tunnel.

Peter

TRANSFORMATIONAL CHANGE NOT ALWAYS GOOD, BUT …

It may not have been as devastating as the Great Depression, but the recession of 2008 changed a lot of lives, in many cases, not for the better.
As New York Times columnist David Brooks writes, after such a change, “a certain number of people are dispossessed. They lose identity, self-respect and hope.
“They begin to base their sense of self-worth on their tribe, not their behavior,” he continues.
“They become mired in their resentments, spiraling deeper into the addiction of their own victimology,” he adds.
Brooks discussed this in relation to national politics in a column published July 15, 2016, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
If you were dealt a blow sometime around 2008, or since, you probably can relate.
Perhaps you lost a job, and haven’t been able to find one that pays you anywhere close to the job you lost. Perhaps you lost your house.
You keep hearing that things are getting better. The economy is picking up, say the experts. Yet, you don’t feel it.
You tend to blame people, or things, that really are not to blame. Even the employer who canned you, if that happened to you, probably was forced to.
Bear this in mind: blaming takes valuable energy away from solving the problem at hand.
Blaming is also easy. Solving the problem may be more difficult.
You may also hear that employers WANT to hire more people now. Yet, you are not among those they are looking for.
An example might be that police forces and the military are looking for new recruits. But you might not be the best candidate for that because, for example, you are too old. Even if you are the right age, perhaps you are not in the kind of physical shape to deal with the rigors of the job.
Perhaps you’ve just graduated college, with a good bit of debt, but employers want something more than just your raw brain to train. They want built-in expertise that you don’t have.
Therefore, you feel you have nowhere to turn. The natural instinct is to blame.
However, there are many ways out there to take your problem into your own hands, and help others do the same. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau.
The economy is going through a transition to the information age. As Brooks points out, it went through something similar in the 1880s, when it transitioned from an agriculture base to an industrial base.
“America still has great resources at the local and social level,” Brooks writes. He believes local is more powerful.
When a natural disaster befalls us, we must decide to rebuild or move. The choice is clearly in our hands. In this era, we have choices. The choice to be a victim is not healthy. The choice to take matters into our own hands, perhaps with the help of great local resources, is preferable.
Doing so may mean changing what you did, and how you did it, or getting used to something new, different and, at least at first, uncomfortable. But it can be done if you just look for the right vehicle for you.
If you have the urge to blame, remember this: You can’t embrace what is gone forever. But it can help you embrace what comes next.
Peter

COLLEGE GRADS’ JOB PROSPECTS IMPROVING? DON’T STAND AND APPLAUD YET

#CollegeGrads #employment #jobs #StudentDebt
It may be the best time to graduate college since the Great Recession. But they are still not great.
So writes Ruth Serven of The Kansas City Star. Her story was published July 3, 2016, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The unemployment rate for college grads is less than 5 percent, and job prospects are getting brighter, Serven writes. But 45 percent of those recent grads have jobs that don’t require their degrees, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Serven writes.
Though there is more work available, grads still face stagnant wages and the highest debt load ever, the article says.
In fact, 42 million people owe $1.3 trillion in student debt, according to the cover story in the August 2016 issue of Consumer Reports magazine, which condensed and reprinted an article by Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting.
“I feel I kind of ruined my life by going to college,” the CR article quotes Jackie Krowen, 32, of Portland, Ore., who owes $162,000 in student debt.
We’ve recently discussed this topic in this space, but it bears hearing another perspective.
Many graduates are coming out of college with debt the size of a home mortgage. How can they be expected to 1) buy a house? 2) begin saving for retirement? or 3) buy some of the essential things they need to live a decent life?
On top of the debt, the students’ expensive education is not giving them work that would be worth the investment, in many cases.
Also, some students are getting calls at all hours with prods, if not threats, to make payments on that debt.
Though most consider a home mortgage not just productive debt, but an actual financial vehicle, college debt, without having a commensurate job to make its burden light, is not productive debt.
Certainly, all education has value. But some education has more value than others. If a student goes on to be a doctor, for example, and goes into debt to make that happen, that’s, more or less, expected.
A medical practice can be lucrative and usually, before the doctor gets too old, it is usually paid off. Some even practice medicine in less lucrative places, in exchange for some eventual debt relief, among other inducements.
But if one studies, say, the liberal arts, and goes into debt to pay for that education, it’s very possible, even likely, that, if he gets a job at all, it will not be terribly lucrative. The student debt, therefore, becomes perhaps a lifelong burden. As that student ages, the burden may be so great that he will retire with little or nothing to help him get through old age.
Fortunately, there are solutions that don’t involve stiffing one’s debtor. There are ways to earn an extra income for a few part-time hours a week that might not only pay better than the job you are doing, but has the potential to make you financially free eventually. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau.
By all means, before a student decides to go to college, sit down with parents and other advisers and do the math. If you have to borrow money to cover most of the costs, think about how you would pay it back. If you don’t have a good answer, reconsider your future.
Colleges and universities, too, should contemplate their futures. How good would it look to produce thousands, even millions, of graduates that are so crushed with debt, they’ll be paying on it forever? Someone needs to retool education to prevent this.
We have a love-hate relationship with education. We may love it while we’re in school, but, when we graduate, often we don’t love it nearly as much.
Peter

BE AN INVESTOR MORE THAN A CONSUMER

#retirement #investments #saving
Investing for retirement need not be scary.
It also need not be impossible, no matter your income, age or situation.
Also, a secure retirement happens because of actions YOU take, not what someone else promises to give you.
Nanci Hellmich discussed investing for retirement, based on Tony Robbins book “Money: Master the Game; 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom,” in an article published Dec. 10, 2014, in USA Today.
Before getting to Robbins’ seven steps, let’s examine your plans for retirement. Do you believe you have to work until you die? Are you saving regularly out of each paycheck? Did you get so financially hammered during the Great Recession that your retirement is doomed? Did you lose your job in the Great Recession, forcing a premature retirement?
Let’s presume you are still working, even if you are working in a job that underpays you – that’s a growing trend these days. Find an amount, it doesn’t have to be much, that you can take out of each paycheck and put away. You have to look at it occasionally to monitor how your investment is doing, but don’t withdraw it until you retire.
If you are forced to retire before you want to, or are financially able to, try not to eat into that fund too quickly. It’s OK to use the dividends, interest etc., for income, but try to hold onto your principal as long as you can.
Robbins’ first two steps, Hellmich’s article says, is to become an investor rather than a consumer and to know what you are invested in. The former is a mindset. When money gets into your hands, you have to first think about paying yourself, before you think about what you will buy. The latter may require some good advice from someone you trust who will look out for your interests before his own.
Robbins third and fourth steps involve taking action. Don’t be afraid to start a retirement fund because you believe you’ll never have enough money in it to retire. If you are young, calculate what you think you’ll need to retire comfortably, and save accordingly. Then, evaluate your asset allocation, which is a big term for knowing how your money is invested. You may take more risk as a young investor, and perhaps change that allocation to more income-producing vehicles later in life, Hellmich quotes Robbins.
Again, the latter may require some help, but you can help yourself by figuring out ways you can save your money.
The last three Robbins tips again involve your thought process. You have to create a lifetime income plan, and believe you can be among the wealthy. Once you get there, enjoy the sacrifices you have made. “Start where you are, and you’ll begin to find out that there’s more than enough wealth for you,” Hellmich quotes Robbins.
If you are still a child, develop that savings and investment mindset early. If you have change in your pocket at the end of the day, put it in a jar. When the jar is full, take the coins to your local bank and put them in your own savings account. Don’t touch the money until at least when you go to college, or go to work after high school.
As an adult, you will already have the right mindset, and can get more sophisticated about saving and investing for retirement.
Lastly, you may be older, approaching retirement, fearful you don’t have enough money. There are many ways out there to solve this problem. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. Check it out with friends in the same situation.
Then, all of you can watch your retirement accounts blossom.

Peter