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Bringing Manufacturing JOBS Back to the US

August 21, 2015 Leave a comment

 

Have you heard all the whoopla about bringing manufacturing jobs back to the US?  The real economist say it can’t happen; and I agree with them. Idealistically it sounds great, but fiscally I don’t see how it could ever work (especially in California).    This California EDD Labor Market Report supports my thinking. It says:

“manufacturing sector is expected to lose 40,100 jobs through the projection period. This sector has a long history of declining employment due to increases in automation and outsourcing…”

 

Manufacturing may surge in the US; but manufacturing JOBS will not.

Have you seen what became of the old NUMMI plant which once was the biggest employer in Alameda county?  It’s now the TESLA plant. It still manufactures automobiles, but it employs minimal human resources.  TESLA employs robotics to do the grunt work of manufacturing vehicles. If your dream job involves building cars, you may want to spend a little more time gaining higher-level math, problem-solving, and computer skills (like coding, computer aided drafting and so forth). Take a look at this video:


 

 


 

Compare what you just saw at TESLA to this short overview of the old NUMMI plant.  There was quite a bit of automation then; but you’ll also see a lot of human talent involved in getting the job done.


 

This major shift in automobile assembly and the unemployment of more than 5000 people only took 20 years to happen. I remember when the NUMMI plant opened, and I was on the front line helping calm the most frantic dislocated workers through the emotional experience of job loss, financial calamity, and workforce skills deficiency. If your dream job involves building cars, you may want to spend a little more time gaining higher-level math, problem-solving, and computer skills (like coding, computer aided drafting and so forth).

Manufacturing isn’t the only industry that will see many of it’s jobs replaced by robotics. Anywhere it can happen, it will happen.  Consider the self-driving vehicles being tested right now. The long-term plan, as I understand it, is for the transportation industry to replace truck drivers with self-driving big rigs.


 


 

The point of my writing this article is this: Right now workforce systems will promote manufacturing careers, and that’s good for now; but for those who choose manufacturing as a career pathway, always remember the future plan is  for  robotics to replace humans. Use this knowledge to your advantage and as a constant motivation not to get comfortable doing the same thing over and over. If you can do it over and over, so can a robot. Diversify your skill-set and invest time in learning innovative, higher-level thinking. See yourself several steps ahead of where the industry is today.

 

No matter what industry you currently work in, take out a little time to see how things are changing in the manufacturing industry.

 

National Manufacturing Day is October 2, 2015. So far there are over 600 events nationwide planned for this day.  Go to www.mfgday.com to find an event near you.

 

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Career Management Tip #2 for LinkedIn

May 15, 2015 1 comment

Hi Friends!

LinkedIn is one of the greatest online career management tools to date. Career management is the lifelong, self-monitored process of career planning that involves choosing and setting personal goals, and formulating strategies for achieving them.  Many times we’re so consumed with our current work – either for a current employer, freelance contract, or entrepreneurial venture – that we forget to manage our own career. Remember, you’re career is YOURS to take care of.  Keep a handle on it even when it seems like it does not need your attention.



Here’s three super quick career management tips for LinkedIn:

Record your accomplishments and projects as soon as they happen.  When you successfully complete a special project at work, go right to the PROJECTS section on your profile and tell us about it!

Keep your profile fresh and up-to-date – Make sure your professional profile photo is current and fresh, and that it looks like YOU.  Make sure the information on your profile is current. If you no longer work for a particular employer or if you’ve graduated from school, update your information.  When a recruiter looks you up on LinkedIn (as they do about 90% of the time before calling you for an interview) you want them to see accurate information from someone who cares about their professional reputation.

If you need a less revealing platform, check out www.poachable.co  (“.CO” not “.com”) – Do you want potential employers and recruiters to know that you’re passively open to new opportunities, but don’t want your current LinkedIn contacts to know? Poachable provides an anonymous platform you might find helpful.

As I always say: “It’s YOUR career – you take care of it!” Reach out if you need help!

Success to You,

Michelle Walker-Wade

 

 

 

 

Career Management Tip

April 27, 2015 Leave a comment

CareerMgmt_ Never back yourself into a corner

Simple Steps To Success

August 9, 2014 Leave a comment

While I could give you a long, elaborate explanation, I will suffice it at this:

Evaluate – Come up with options – Choose a plan of action – Try it out – Evaluate it again – Make adjustments – Try it again applying the changes – Evaluate it again – Make adjustments – Try it again applying the changes – Evaluate it again… And again. And again. And again.

My Thoughts on Yahoo’s Decision to Ban Telecommuting

February 27, 2013 Leave a comment

My thoughts on the Yahoo! CEO’s decision to ban telecommuting –

Marissa Mayer’s perspective that building a strong culture of communication and collaboration is something that happens much more effectively when team members are physically in the same location is something I know from experience to be true.  “Water cooler” conversations have a big impact on the collaborative culture of a company. It’s a place where random conversations can generally turn into productive, problem-solving sessions; especially when working on a high-functioning team.  If the team is dysfunctional in this area it takes hard work to overturn the current culture in order to establish a new culture.

For several understandable reasons Mayer has issued a strict ban on telecommuting effective June 1, 2013. But, I do Telecommuter Malehope in time she will relax the strictness of the policy a little as Yahoo! begins to see the outcomes needed to remain competitive. Personally, I’m a Yahoo! fan; I prefer it’s interface, intuitiveness, and productive use much more than I do Google’s; but I cannot deny that Google is much more creative and innovative than Yahoo!.  These are traits you see in highly collaborative work teams. Perhaps this change will help Yahoo! in this area.

Considering all of Yahoo’s current product failures and it’s inability to hire and manage the talent needed to remain competitive, we’re short-sighted when we choose to see this ban as an all out attack on telecommuting. Clearly the rampant abuse and overall lack of oversight and performance management is a systemic issue at Yahoo. It’s killing the company at large. Someone with strong leadership had to step up and tighten the reins, to weed out problem employees and rebuild a functional workforce. Sometimes in the weeding-out process you lose valuable team-members. But to continue on the path to corporate self-destruction would be more devastating in the long run. They have many performance and management issues at Yahoo; this is just one step in cleaning up shop. I believe the ban will be lifted in time.

On the flip side, this move will cause a hardship on families. Anyone caring for children and/or aging parents have some difficult decisions to make. Most public education organizations and elder care facilities are working with tighter budgets, therefore requiring parents and caregivers to do more than ever. You have to wonder how much of our workforce even has the option of returning to an inflexible work schedule.

Perhaps Yahoo! will lose some of it’s top talent with this change. But perhaps it will also create a great pool of talent for the smaller, less known companies who are in a better position to offer telecommuting and home-life balance.  Seeing the challenges Yahoo! is currently facing is a clear indication that it’s time to manage talent more closely.

Now, without siting any sources, here are a few comments others have made.  I’m adding them here just to give a more well-rounded perspective on this hot topic.

  • I think it’s probably a wimpy way of making what the CEO claims are necessary staff cutbacks, since I’m sure many people will now have no other choice but to resign. However, as much as I want to disagree completely and say it was an insane decision, some of the CEO’s comments made sense to me in the context of the company’s history and the major reasons for its difficulties.
  • My question is, “What is the exact problem that led to this ban? And how can they address the exact problem without a complete ban on telecommuting?” It may be necessary in some instances but a blanket ban seems excessive.
  • It is a well known fact that there is a “un tapped” market of skilled professionals that are no longer in the job market because of the lack of telecommuting and remote work opportunities. I too had to leave a position that I loved when my daughter was born because of a new corporate initiative that required for all personnel to be on-site 5 days a week.
  • More and more studies and employees, CEO’s, and consultants are finding that when you recruit top talent and take care of your employees and don’t get in their way of being human (having lives, homes, needing to wait for the cable guy sometimes), then you win, period.
  • I’ve read several articles on this and have concluded that Yahoo had no better alternative. True, it’s not a great decision, but the alternatives (including leaving the current telework program in place) must have been worse.
  • If they had employees who were not trustworthy or not towing the line, I wish they could have addressed those individuals. Maybe they tried. It brings to mind the teacher who criticizes and disciplines the whole class because a handful of students are not doing what they are supposed to do. Maybe she felt that the issue was an epidemic sweeping through the telecommuting employees at Yahoo, and once again, I am not in her shoes.
  • I’ve been in situations before where a blanket approach, such as this, was used, and rather than weeding out the untrustworthy employees or developing them into better employees, it just brought everyone down, including the top performers, who quickly started finding work elsewhere. And any hope for new collaborating turned into employees collaborating about their complaints and their desires to work elsewhere…
  • There’s clearly some people at Yahoo! who have been able to hide their lack of productivity at home. Those are the real targets here. It won’t surprise me if the policy is reversed at some point, but they have to change the culture first. The culture has been the target of most of her moves up to this point, so I applaud her efforts.
  • …That is why Marissa is the CEO of Yahoo and not you. If everything in the world was run on basis of just books, anyone can run the companies, they would not need a person like Marissa and pay her millions. Let’s face it, Marissa brought in changes like iPhones to all staff, and we now know that change is working. The condition Yahoo is currently in, Marissa sees Yahoo has two choices – employees can come in to change the culture she likes to see OR employees can stay at home (as Yahoo will go down the drain, like many other before it).

So, what are your thoughts?

Giving and Receiving Feedback

February 19, 2013 2 comments

Feedback-TalkingNo matter what business or industry you may work in, you will benefit from networking, partnering, and supporting other like-minded business people.  One of the benefits of having this type of working relationship is that you can give and receive feedback in a non-threatening environment.  The key to taking advantage of this benefit is you must be free to speak constructively and be open to hear fully.

The other day I met with a fellow education manager who is trying, as we all are, to breath life into a limping system – the system that provides career education options for adults who are not a good fit for 4-year college programs.  At this meeting, she asked me for feedback on an assessment she gives to potential students. I shared openly and even showed her some example alternatives.  After our meeting, she emailed:

I thoroughly enjoyed our meeting and your mind extraordinaire.  You are indeed a wealth of knowledge and the most generous person I know – you’re a super professional to boot. Wow! Thanks for this information.  It’s obviously the way to go and I will revisit the other assessments.  Thank you so much for your candor.  I had others critique my assessments but no one made any suggestions. I really appreciate another set of eyes. – ones attached to an intelligent brain…

I also picked her brain for some dirty little details about our changing industry, making the meeting a win-win for both of us.  This is what real networking can and should do for us. Everyone should leave the meeting with some part of an issue or wondering resolved. It just makes good business sense.

This, in my opinion, is when networking is really networking.  Here’s a video clip from several months ago where I shared similar words with you.

~ All the best to you!

"Michelle

5 Top Resume Suggestions Made to Job-Seekers

July 1, 2012 3 comments

On June 28th I participated in the Northern California Silicon Valley Career Strategies Forum event as a résumé reviewer; we had over 200 job-seekers in attendance.  After reviewing many résumés that day, I  want to share with you the top five résumé suggestions I made to various attendees.

You can  take a look at my youtube video to hear the details, and I will also list them briefly below.

FIVE Top Suggestions in a Nutshell

  1. Don’t try to make one résumé fit all jobs.
  2. Make sure you use the first page of your résumé most effectively.
  3. Let go of the objective statement, and use a career profile or a summary of qualifications instead.
  4. Be more compelling in describing work experience .
  5. Format your text so it is easy  for the reader to view; this pertains to font sizes, line spaces, margin size, etc.

I hope you take time to watch the video.  I believe you will find the information to be useful. Feel free to ask questions or leave feedback below.

~ Blessings!

Michelle Walker-Wade
Workplace Literacy &
Career Strategy
Expert

Twitter: @mwalkerwade
FaceBook: http://www.facebook.com/mwalkerwade
Blog: https://workplacelit4adults.wordpress.com
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/WorkplaceLit4Adults