I thought Julie’s post: A Jobs Manifesto for Young Europe (and the Rest of the World) was an interesting set of views on youth unemployment
Europe’s young people are bearing the brunt of the fallout from the collapse of the financial system and the struggle to save the Euro. In Britain, where I live, youth unemployment has topped one million. In Greece, the rate is nearly 50% — that’s one out of every two young people in the country.
The good news is that there is work and there’s actually quite a lot that we can do to create it. But it’s not going to be work like we’ve been used to — nor can we provide it or find it the old-fashioned way. Specifically, we need to accept that:
- The world is undergoing a structural change. Just as we moved from machines to electronics after the second world war, now we are moving into a new age where all business is driven by networks, and the remote control to your life is your mobile phone. That means that the jobs you can get may not be like the jobs you had.
- A job is not a job is not a job. Government in its entirety is a cost-center to society, so we desperately need to create not just jobs, but private sector jobs. Each job in government that gets created just is a further weight around a country’s neck.
- You may live in Barcelona, Leeds or Dublin, but your employer could be on the opposite side of the world. You must be open to that reality, and not shut yourself off from those employers in your quest for a local job.
- The government cannot help you. There’s no money and anyway governments never spend ahead of the curve, where the new jobs are. Look at the entrepreneurs to find out where the smart money and new jobs are.
So what can we do to create jobs? Let’s start with what the unemployed can do for themselves. Thanks to our new networked society, there are not only more opportunities than people realize but they are also much easier to access. Specifically you can use social media to help you:
- Sell, sell, and sell yourself. You can create a personal webpage to house all of your professional information, update your Linkedin Network, and do research on companies very easily.
- Build your network. Increasingly, your “natural market” is not defined by geography. You can connect and communicate with people who share the same passions and want what you can sell.
- Learn and share. You can learn about new things and become an expert more easily through online education and free digital information. You can blog about your interests.
- Make up your own job. Many people who were laid off will say that it was the best thing that happened to them as it gave them the kick they needed to set up their own kitchen table business, or become a consultant of this or that.
This post is part of the special series The New Rules for Getting a Job.
In my mind developing entrepreneurial ideas has to be a major way of standing out in this crisis, but that is always easier said than done.
What advice are you giving young people in this climate of extreme levels of youth unemployment.