Monday, September 08, 2008

Choosing a Recession proof career- A Hobson's choice?

One of the readers of this blog, Helen Anderson pointed me to a post on  recession proof careers  earlier today.

The top 5 careers the author suggested revolved around international, teaching, green, health care and public service, while two wellwishers chipped in with -engineering and entrepreneurship.

To me-on first impressions, it seemed perfect-considering the author was perhaps "US centric". However, most of us in India-perhaps cannot relate to them as heartily-as teaching & public service aren't as glamorous and well paying as yet, here. Or perhaps, it is because we in India-are yet to see large scale 'lay-offs' as yet? Or maybe, the economic development in India-is in a different stage of the life cycle?

As a recruiter, I notice-the slow down in the India- has seen increasing hiring of sales professionals. While most companies -as an instinct -look at cost cutting, I presume there is a limit to the amount of impact by sticking to austere measures.  We have noticed, most companies ramping up their sales teams, looking at new customers, new territories, and manning as many markets as they can- to increase the top line.

Looking at the larger picture, I feel, the only way any professional can play safe is by "constantly learning AND unlearning". 

Increasingly, even comparing to the trend in the last couple of decades, one can see the change in the tenure of employment. Extinct is the concept of 'life time employment'- as people start looking for options once in 2-3 years-forcing some of the Indian IT companies to recognise those who spend even 5yrs in the company for 'long service rewards'!!  Compound the fact that the average human life has extended and one can expect to work till 70- one can easily see that the 'career span' of any professional would surely last about 50 years- and it is predicted-that one is prone to change 4-5 careers..during the employment tenure.

It is time we looked at taking responsibility for one's own skill development-and perhaps hone different interests-and hobbies, as a serious way of planning one's career. 

Can we imagine the challenges of the HR professionals-if this were to happen? I shall be glad to hear offline from all of you!

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