Purposeful people promote prosperity!
Why is purpose important? Should we be afraid if people do not know their purpose?
Duncan Bolam warns that global economic forces and pace and scale of change facing citizens attempting to plan their careers is a ticking bomb which society ignores at its peril. Efficiency-hungry, austerity conscious organisations appear to be removing the need for skill from many areas of the labour market; either through mechanisation, downsizing, automation or outsourcing labour to emerging economies. He warns it is a vicious cycle; which ultimately leads to chaos, conflict and crisis borne from crisis.
These forces do not bode well for anyone seeking to maintain a steady income and a developing career; especially our younger workers. Many of whom cannot: get a start, are ill-equipped to navigate this fast-changing labour market, invest in a sustainable occupation, or simply don’t possess the career attributes necessary to market themselves positively in a highly competitive, globalised and shrinking labour market.
Throughout his 18-year experience, 90% of the people Duncan Bolam has met through his job as a Career Coach & Redundancy Counsellor are either completely in the wrong job or disengaged from their work. Worse still, as growing trends demonstrate, they are not working at all. Yet, his undying belief is that everyone he has ever met has an occupation locked inside of him or her and identifying a person’s purpose in life is good for all society’s wellbeing, socioeconomic and otherwise.
Once discovered, this sense of meaningfulness, motivation and occupational identity will not only feed, clothe, shelter, sustain, invigorate, develop and excite the individual citizen, and their families, critically, the process also meshes society together and constructs bonds upon which communities thrive.
With terrifying numbers of people unemployed, with the average number of job changes in a career in excess of 18 different jobs - all of Society's bridges into - and across - ‘The World of Work’ are falling into one socioeconomic crisis after another. Big business is perceived to care little about the quality of ‘fit’ between employee and their work.
Managers de-layer more and more workers out of their businesses in their ceaseless pursuit of profit. Many organisations outsource key skills overseas. And there is a risk our workforce is becoming de-skilled as a result...
Resultantly, if not at risk of being permanently unemployed, facing a lifetime on benefits, workers have less-and-less pay in their wallets. Traditional anchors that sustain a civil and secure society no longer function and communities implode into chaos, turning neighbour on neighbour, haves against have-nots, and the desperate in to dependents. Pride lost. Purpose gone. Driven to desperation.
People who are encouraged to plan their careers through better self-awareness, knowledge of their career attributes and insights into the labour market, contribute more tax to The Exchequer, are less likely to commit crime, cost the welfare state less, place less of a burden on national health services and comprise a more valuable, agile, resilient and mobile workforce.
Our governments have dismantled career development mechanisms and our education systems rarely prepare young people for real-life, sustainable and meaningful careers that will last them over the long haul between school and retirement; whilst making a positive contribution to the communities they live in.
With so many people unemployed, a growing population, more disaffected young people struggling to get a start in life, ineffectual public sector guidance systems and a profit-hungry private sector, Duncan warns that the system is broken. Society needs to stop and re-think what it will do with our citizens if we’re not going to help them discover meaningful work.
Organisations, business leaders, stock markets, our education systems and society as a whole cannot go on de-skilling jobs, removing meaning from workers lives, legislating against ‘skills mastery’ and generating labour market uncertainty. If we refuse to accept that EVERY person in our world has a right to a fulfilling career, meaningful work and a genuine stake in society built upon.
Politics aside, if nothing else, consider how much better off all stakeholders are for getting more people into rewarding, motivating, purposeful and secure jobs. If we as a civilised society focussed on eradicating unemployment and sharing prosperity, consider the cost of running the welfare state that would be saved and the benefits to us all achieved through increased competitiveness and harmonious communities.
* In future films, Duncan will describe his vision for full-employment, a sustainable working model and his campaign to eradicate unemployment.