One of my clients just asked me to interview for a full-time position with them.
While I’m not personally looking to go back to that kind of employment, the conversations I’ve had around the job have reminded me how important an open mind is around the concept of work in the “new economy.”
The work world has changed so much that it’s a massive mistake to look at employment from linear or simplistic perspectives. That means in terms of…
- Overall career: that “tried and true” process of education to full-time job to a stable career to a safe retirement (which doesn’t pay off quite as well for Black/Hispanic people.)
- The interview process: Judging a company’s culture by interaction with one or two HR representatives or the interview process itself.
- The concept of a job opening: It’s reported that somewhere around 80% of jobs are acquired through networking. I used to work for an HR consulting company. I regularly posted jobs just for the sake of fulfilling legal obligations. Job openings are not always what they appear to be.
- Income over a lifetime: Jobs are much less stable than they used to be and in turn, the same goes for income.
All if this is the reason that I believe that everyone should consider working independently at some level.
Freelancing can lead to full-time jobs (like in my case), but the opposite is true too. Many people work full-time, and then turn that experience into a freelance job. Some people keep their freelance work like a faucet that can be turned on and off throughout their career.
The conversations and interactions you have with clients teach you more about a company’s culture and values than any interview or research could and working in a larger company can build connections faster than working on your own ever could. The research you do to find clients who need work overlays neatly with a search for open positions. It’s all part of the same relationship…all a form of you, a service provider, looking for buyers who need work done.
It’s not a simple picture, but it’s one you can start building at any age (looking at you high school folk) to navigate the world of work for the rest of your life.