To me, louder than a church bell on a quiet Sunday morning, was the statement by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, “We’re never going to be the same again.”
He is right. We are forever changed. I say this not just because I think in terms of habit formation and some of us are at or nearing the 21 days in captivity, but because we have a whole generation – actually two – who must build their careers out of a crisis. I understand every generation has its own crisis to rise above, but it never seems fair does it?
“Careers are disrupted every day regardless how well an individual performs.” ~ Patricia Romboletti
What is important to know and realize is that this time – this Corona Cocoon – that has us all frozen in place or frantically fighting for survival is both a gift and a wake-up call. In her Ted Talk “The Gig Economy,” Patricia Romboletti recognizes that we must consider every role is a gig because just as we may all swear that this will never happen again and plan to save more money in a nest egg or work for a larger company to create a sense of stability, businesses are doing the same exact thing. Romboletti points out that during a retail renaissance where many companies were reinventing themselves, that restructuring meant companies did not need the same workforce with the same skillset they required before. If they are realizing it, so should you.
“[Companies] have to remain nimble in order to remain relevant.” ~ Patricia Romboletti
Remembering a time when I was beta testing a new service called Netflix, I had a vague recollection of pulling DVDs out of a mailbox thinking it was a long time between movies. I do not remember when they moved to streaming but I do remember the fuss that was created when the pricing was restructured. Romboletti points out that not only did Netflix disrupt itself twice to remain relevant (in moving from DVDs to streaming and again in moving into original content creation), but that disruption – change – is and will continue to be at an accelerated pace. This means the lifespan of a company or of tenure is significantly less than it was a generation ago.
I have built and evolved my own practice, Sacred Time, to coach people through change because I recognize that it happens by chance or by choice and is always disruptive. What this change – this Corona Cocoon – has afforded many of us is the chance to rethink our approach to our lives and our careers. According to Romboletti, even as some return to the role of being an employee, it is important to inhabit the gig economy mindset in order to have viable careers. Her tips for staying agile in a dynamic world include:
- Constantly build and expand your network
- Partner with those who have different skillsets so you can expand your offerings
- Always be looking (ABL) for your next gig
- Carve your own career path
- Watch for larger economic trends
Your career is your company and it is time to prepare for what will come in a post-pandemic world. While it can be helpful for a business to layout a path of promotion for each employee, it will be one that fits in with their needs and their vision for the future. It is important for you to look outside your role, your team, and your department to see what opportunities excite you because this is where true career satisfaction comes from.
I invite you to both follow me and walk with me. Together we can look forward to success.