Out Of Business

My frustrations at trying to explain the current employment scene for job-seekers. Created on the Pixton comic making website http://www.pixton.com). Click to see full-size image.

Trying to explain my struggle with unemployment, part-time homelessness, and loss of financial independence is a tough sell, even where my information is provided free of charge.

Some people who are in recession-proof jobs like the public service sector, or who are wealthy will tell me there’s no recession, no poverty, and no homeless crisis. They’ll tell me I’m not trying hard enough to find a job, that I’m someone who expects things handed to him, or that my misfortune is all my fault because I must be an addict (untrue), fired from my last job (untrue), or lazy (untrue). They say all these things despite reading the news about job losses, companies closing,  and young people facing a higher level of unemployment and the Catch-22 of no experience, no job.

Such arguments with these people really vex me, but not as much as the arguments I have with the next group of people.

These people are completely UNAWARE of the current economic climate. They regard the business section of the newspaper as liner for the bird-cage, view the business report on the evening news as an excuse to take a nature break but would lose it if they missed their sports and entertainment news. After all, news about a self-indulgent Hollywood star or overpaid sports athlete must be more important than 33,000 jobs lost last month in Canada, right? Riiiiiight.

When I ask these particular people why they don’t follow the business news, I’m told it’s unimportant, or it doesn’t affect or concern them.

That’s completely foolish, not to mention very dangerous thinking. For example, if the business news reports a rise in a national bank interest rate, it will affect whatever credit consumers and companies use. If it reports a drop in consumer confidence, it means a lot of people are scared about job security, and so should you. If it reports a few companies are laying off staff and they happen to be in the same market your employer is in, beware.

Your employer will never tell you the full details about your employment future. Even if they did, they won’t do this upfront when it happens. The interests of the company, those in charge of it, and the investors will come before your concerns as an employee.

This is why each of us need to take charge of our current employment status, which is done by becoming business-aware. We do not need to be Donald Trump moguls: we just need to watch for warning signs in the economy in the same way we watch for warning signs regarding our health.

In fact, we have to make it our business to do so.

Thanks for reading!






2 thoughts on “Out Of Business

  1. Hey David,

    Good post!

    I relate to how you feel with Employed people , Public service sector workers i.e OW caseworkers and even some Friends/Family members with regards to the true aspects of Unemployment and it’s associated challenges. Many of those aforementioned demographics are abysmally ignorant on the subject. And I can assure you if they became unemployed themselves they won’t know what hit them! And given the job pool shrinking due to Automation & Population growth, here & worldwide, chances are very high most of them will not reach retirement in their job position neither. Hence,one truly has to laugh at their uninformed optimism that they perpetuate.

    Moreover and matter of fact a couple of years ago I came across some dossier on technological employment and according to the current data of existing technology approximately 75% of all professions could be phased out now! So it’s unfortunately no surprise jobs continue to be lost and businesses continue to either close branches or close down altogether as seen in earlier this year in Canada.

    Interestingly I’ve asked the question of ” Have you heard of technological Unemployment” to a couple my OW caseworkers and Job developers at two separate Employment Centers. And not one of them knew what technological unemployment meant. Hahahahahaha ….. that said volumes to me and that they lacked a massive bit of information. My brother has also been employed as a Job recruiter for 20 years and he actually believes there is more jobs than people ( this is of course actually opposite). Thus in his opinion, everyone should be able to be employed ; another uninformed genius! ( smirk). Most of these people don’t realize all their professions in administration can presently be made obsolete by current technology anytime. And even some people in government jobs have been made redundant over the last few years. Thus, very few jobs today are actually safe or untouchable of being phased out.

    Another thing of significance is why we unemployed people cannot get jobs. Again the ignorance of many of the Employed people continues. They don’t seem to realize the go-to jobs for Canadian people transitioning careers or College/university students in the past were general help positions i.e McDonald’s, Coffee shops ( Tim Hortons etc.), and other similar general help – no experience job positions. However thanks to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP), employers can and do fill those go-to job positions with foreign immigrant workers that they can manipulate and/or even get for cheaper wages. Thus this shrinks the job pool more! And the poor ass excuse for the (TFWP) is that Canadians will not work those type of jobs. Utter nonsense of course.

    There are of course also other job seeking issues / challenges with regards to the unpredictable – biased & outdated interview process, fake job postings ( estimated at 50 %), inflated qualifications for Jobs in general as well as Entry level jobs (entry level jobs meant No experience are now 1-3 experience required), shrinking pool of > No Experience Job positions and employers unwilling to train, and the list goes on ad-nauseum.

    Nonetheless, David as you and I know, many currently employed people have not had to look for work in the last couple of years. So they have no clue / personal experience of what the true situation & challenges faced by job seekers on the frontlines of the present job market. And as you pointed out, most of them do not follow the news aspects of Employment or the Economy.

    Incidentally, the days of the Mom & Pop businesses and their appreciation of their fellow workers & their loyalties to the business are long gone. Businesses of today and past recent decades are progressively about “Profit before People” or the proverbial “Bottom line” Therefore once these businesses figure a way to implement or afford the technology or cheaper labor to replace workers (white collar or blue collar it matters not) they will & do it in a heartbeat. And what many employed people don’t realize is this Future is in process here and now!

    In Solidarity,

    1. Hi Ed.

      Thanks for your detailed analysis in your reply. It is definitely something I’m trying to get those who are working to be more aware of, even if they currently are not in danger of losing their jobs. I believed at one time the I.T. field in its former incarnation of centralized in-house mainframe solutions was untouchable. That was before mobile computing, lower costs of telecommunication networks and the outsourcing of systems operations to both domestic and foreign resources changed all that. I hope what I have provided here, as well as your own excellent commentary, will give pause for thought to anyone who wants to be more aware of their current employment status.

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