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About 4 years ago when the economy was tanking and the end of the world was near, I wrote the following blog. I just ran across this and thought it was still a good message.
Once a month, I have the fortune of meeting with 10 other CEO’s of companies from various industries. During these meetings we talk about the issues facing our companies and offer suggestions as to what our options are with respects to those issues. Last week, the facilitator of our group asked the question, “What the hell’s going on?” To which we all replied, what do you mean? He replied, we’ve never been in this situation before. The amount of uncertainty with the economy is historical, there’s just so many things going wrong. What should WE be doing? This question prompted a very heated discussion about all the different things that could be done or should be done in today’s society. We talked about our roles as CEO’s and what could we do to have an impact in these uncertain times.
One of the issues we discussed was the fact that so many people are losing their jobs, and so many people’s attitude is that since they have lost their job their only option is to get another job. We talked about the current state of the job market and acknowledged that the number of jobs is decreasing and thus there are going to be many more displaced people than job opportunities moving forward. The collective thought in our group was that the time is now to be innovative and to instead of getting a job, making a job. The basis of that conversation was the fact that every individual, every human being, has a certain set of skills. My skills are different that Steve’s skills, and Steve’s skills are far different than Mary’s skills. But, understanding what your skill set is, that allows you to offer something of value to business owners, or businesses. The thought today is, what is needed in society is a change of thought from, I’m going to have to go get a job, to, and I want to make a job.
The economy is changing such that outsourcing is now going to be a primary way that we get things done. As a business owner myself, I would much rather outsource responsibilities than hire additional employees. Why? Well, employees are expensive. Employees bring with them attitudes and a host of management issues. Along with those issues, not only do you have a cost with the employee of their salary, but you also have such things as benefits, and you have FICA, and all these things that go with employees. Speaking from my company’s perspective, I’ve got a great group of employees, but the thought of adding an additional player does not excite me. The thought of outsourcing a new responsibility, as a growing company, seems a much better option in these evolving times.
The world is changing to a point where gone are the days of the big businesses. We are all aware of the woes of the big 3 automotive companies, large financial institutions, and retail companies. I think moving forward; we are going to be a collection of smaller businesses. Now more than ever, innovation is going to happen. You can choose as an employee of a company that has been riffed to try to get another job and make less money, or, take the skills that God gave you and create a business. Many people that get riffed are given a severance. Take that severance and use that as seed money to start your own business. Some will succeed; some will fail, but use this time now to create that stream of revenues from an outsourcing standpoint, based upon your God given skill set.
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