The traditional workplace model has entered into an evolutionary spiral. A workforce reinvention is taking place across generational boundaries, in fact across career trajectories for many people worldwide. Among the numerous reasons:
- Career reinvention due to unemployment
- Career reinvention fueled by a desire for more joyful work
- Re-entering the workforce because 401-k’s have been clobbered
- Re-entering the workforce after motherhood
- The desire to be an entrepreneur
- The need and/or desire for a better work life fit
- A strong desire to give back and make a difference
- The undying relentless quest to merge passion, profit, and purpose
It’s the last one that generally falls to the bottom of the barrel because it seems the most difficult to acquire. The underlying thread of this blog over the last 3 years has been that quest for more meaningful work, thus the tag line (which is about 2 years old); success, serenity & significance 24/7. What a world we would be living in if “vocation” was king. Meaningful heartfelt work fueled by those three “‘s” words. But that’s a journey – not a destination. You can learn more about this in my webisode, Work Life Post-9/11, We’re a Work Life Nation.
Our Career Chaos Economy
We’re experiencing what I have referred to as a “Career Chaos Economy.” There have been dramatic shifts in consciousness around the way we live, do business/work, and how we manage the work life merge. There are unprecedented changes taking place; women now make up half the workforce as we’ve learned this year from the work from A Woman’s Nation, baby boomers have forged a new path as Encore Careers take flight, those who make up Generation Y have taken the lead as conscious digital natives creating and demanding new work environments as you can read in Penelope Trunk’s Brazen Careerist blog.
The elusive quest for right livelihood
No matter the generation, even in a tight job market with high unemployment, men and women are questioning the traditional nine-to-five existence. One which conjures an image of sitting behind a desk, immobile under the dictates of management that often has no conceptual model, or care thereof, of a better work life existence.
Because we’ve all been shaken to our core, our career chaos economy has us uprooted our traditional beliefs in work and has us at least, examining what right livelihood might look like. That is of course, a subjective concept, but it’s being explored like never before. There are numerous websites which I’ve mentioned in past posts, (ie. Top Ten Work Life Culture Stories of 2009) tackling legislation and workplace models to this end, many of which are highly concerned with boosting workplace effectiveness and calling for a better work life fit across the board.
New voices and projects on the horizon
This week I learned about another blog carnival being hosted by Fem 2.0, with an associated blog radio series to…:
“…shift the conversation around work and families away from outdated assumptions and privileged perspectives to better reflect the experience of everyday Americans and American families, who are being crushed between the obligations of home and the workplace.”
I plan to participate fueled by my own passion of this undying quest for right-livelihood, vocation and an all-around better work life existence. Heading into 2010 Work Life Nation will continue to focus on the following:
- Success: redefining success with passion, values, purpose
- Serenity: cultivating calm and navigating sensory overload
- Significance: conscious work toward greater purpose
What do you consider right livelihood, how do you define success? How are you reinventing your career toward this end? Please share your stories.