Hardly a morning goes by these days without me hearing some story on NPR Morning Edition about American economic woe. Especially around this Christmas time. People who’ve been working hard all their lives, suddenly can’t afford presents for their kids. Those kind of stories. They’re sad as hell, and they seem to be getting more and more frequent.
At the same time I keep seeing news stories like this one from the WSJ: About how competition in Silicon Valley for engineering talent is so fierce, they’re fighting over interns now:
Silicon Valley’s talent wars are going younger.
Bay Area tech companies, already in a fierce fight for full-time hires, are now also battling to woo summer interns. Technology giants like Google Inc. have been expanding their summer-intern programs, while smaller tech companies are ramping up theirs in response—sometimes even luring candidates away from college.
And then there was another story from the BBC, about how Brazil has now overtaken the UK as the world’s sixth largest economy.
A lot of the world is in flux, so it seems. And to this cartoonist, it has a simple enough explanation:
The Great Convergence is upon us, and our friend, the Internet is accelerating the process. This would be happening with our without “The 1%” misbehaving themselves- whatever the mainstream media and the Occupy crowd might say.
The good news is, if you have a talent, the world wants it, and it has never been so easy to show your talent to the world.
The bad news is, especially for us fat & lazy Americans, is that the great, century-long era of Prosperity-on-Autopilot is over.
The world still wants serious talent. And it still wants people doing the grunt work: pushing mops, digging ditches, waiting tables, answering phones, flipping burgers etc..
It’s the people in the middle that nobody knows what to do with anymore. And the politicians who claim that they do, are lying.
It’s probably too late for my generation, that ship has already sailed. But for the kids out there reading this, who are just starting out?
Learn how to work hard, work long hours. Find something you love, and then excel at it. Above all else, learn how to create, learn how to invent. That’s your only hope, really.
Like I said, no more Autopilot.
I try to write good stuff, I think it is getting to slightly better then average. But now what? Where do I go from here? How do I get “out there”?
Short answer: Practice! 😀
[…] sagt Business-Card-Cartoonist Hugh MacLeod aus seiner US-Perspektive: A lot of the world is in flux, so it seems. And to this cartoonist, it has a simple enough explanation: […]
For me the sad economy meant that I couldn’t continue one career so I went back to my dream of being an artist. Now I am not starving… as an artist. funny how life is.
Bravo, Addie! Yeah, that’s kinda how it works 😀
I spent 4 years bartending in San Jose. I quit this year. I have 3 degrees and I’m bartending?! Purely because my degrees are art related and not tech or science related. Crazy. Started my own business, wedding photography (cause there aren’t enough of those right?) and don’t plan on sleeping much, but I plan on being happy and making a living doing what I want to do.
They Mediocre Middle is getting squeezed out in advertising and design as well. Honestly, I’m not sure this is a bad thing. Great article.
Not bad because now if not passionate the lack of authenticity is readily apparent to the observant. Passionate curation adds value
If you find something you love, you’ll want to excel at it. Hopefully you’ll have the drive to do the work it takes … or even better, it won’t feel like work.
My problem is the multitasking. Focusing solely on the thing I’m passionate about isn’t an option at this point. The cash part of the sex and cash equation, while not unpleasant, sucks up a lot of time. I have a lot of other responsibilities that I cannot walk away from.
I’m midway through Evil Plans. There’s a lot there about how you need to tirelessly do lots of different things. But I’m not wired like that.
What advice would you give to the people who do better when they focus on one thing at once?
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[…] and likely Italy.Another great capture can be found in Hugh MacLeod’s cartoon and post, The Era of Prosperity-on-Autopilot is over. The people that feel threatened are the ones on the middle. The rule followers, managers and good […]
[…] GapingVoid: “Hardly a morning goes by these days without me hearing some story…about American […]