Tag Archives: globalisation

Can You Help Joe Evans in His 100-Day Search For a New Job?

We all know that the Internet is changing the way people work and tools like LinkedIn are changing the way people find work, but is it possible to post your work experience online and hope that people will come to you?

That’s what British graphic designer Joe Evans has tried. He has been a designer for many years, but has never had enough design work to make it worth pursuing as a full-time option. Now that his day job at the British embassy in Paris has ended – as the entire department he worked in has closed – Joe has decided to use social media to try entering the world of graphic design on a full-time basis.

But his 100-day campaign is now in the final week. Joe has found that to build some buzz using social media is actually a lot of work. If he spends time applying for jobs then he isn’t building an audience on the social platforms and if he just spends all day tweeting about his need to find work then he isn’t applying for a job.

I asked Joe what he is really looking for: “For me the most important thing is to feel like I’m contributing to society in some way. I’ve worked with a lot of charities and social enterprises in my career and I always find the job satisfaction goes up, as does the innovation. Communications can be forgotten about in the third sector and I’d love to get the chance use my experience and knowledge to help on this front,” he said.

Joe also explained his inspiration for trying to find a new job using his blog: “I’ve been really interested in social media and especially crowdsourcing for a few years, in fact a large part of my master’s thesis was about it. In May I was beginning to panic about my imminent redundancy, and at about the same time I saw Amanda Palmer’s Ted talk on The Art of Asking.

Naturally Joe’s response to Amanda’s talk was to go out and ask. But Amanda has a big audience already so when she asks for help on a social network a lot of people will respond with offers, or can at the very least share the request with their network of friends. If you don’t have a big platform to start with then one more request for help can just sink into a deep ocean of tweets.

When I talked to Joe he was about three quarters of the way through his 100-day campaign to find a job and he explained what had happened: “So far I’ve had one formal interview and loads of correspondence, I wouldn’t have seen the adverts for most of the positions in the normal run of things so that is a real win. I’m continuing to look and following up leads from people while also trying to see if I can get some more freelance work to tide me over in the coming months. The really good thing is how much people have helped me, It’s been a great chance to get back in contact with people I haven’t spoken to in a while and just to get a much better idea of what the market’s really like,” he said.

So even starting from a lower base than a famous musician with a following, it’s clearly possible to generate connections and noise about a job search, but is it enough?

It is tough for everyone to get a job these days, even those with experience and skills so I asked Joe if he felt that things have changed since he originally graduated in 2007: “Yes, I was pretty naive then and took some temp jobs before trying to start a career and before I knew it the financial crisis happened. That really changed the game, the number of candidates seems to have skyrocketed and with restricted budgets, internal appointments have become even more common,” Joe explained. “In feedback from almost every interview I’ve had I’ve been told one of two things either an internal candidate got the job or I don’t have enough experience, even when applying for entry level jobs,” he added.

Joe’s own experience shows that competition has increased. Professionals, like graphic designers, need skills and experience to find a job. There is something strange about companies demanding experience when they are offering entry-level positions, but if they are this demanding then there must surely be people out there with experience applying for those jobs.

Tools like LinkedIn are making it easier to seek out new opportunities, but they have also created more global competition amongst those skills that can be easily traded or delivered online. Journalists used to getting several hundred pounds per thousand words of copy are finding that their work is drying up as people on the other side of the world are hired for a fraction of the cost – and the same applies to jobs in areas like graphic design.

My wife has commissioned several pieces of commercial art recently, logos and website themes, for start-up businesses. She tried asking local designers to quote, but ended up working with people in Mexico and the UAE. Why? Because the other designers were just as qualified, just as professional, also had a great portfolio of work, but were far cheaper.

This globalisation of professional work also means that there is a global market for the services of a computer programmer in Wales, or graphic designer in Hampshire, or journalist in Glasgow. However, the people with these skills need to learn how to sell what they can do to an international audience and that leads us back to the Internet and social media.

Because of his blog, Joe has found a lot of people who are really interested in his 100-day search for a job – many people have got in touch and shared their own experience, but he still doesn’t have that elusive new job. At the end of this month, he is going to have a lot more time on his hands to stare endlessly at LinkedIn, so if you have a role for him, or even just some more advice, then you can reach Joe by reading his blog here.

Revolution!

Photo by FanBoy30 licensed under Creative Commons

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We never manufacture things any more…

A common refrain about the state of the world today is the economic emphasis on services rather than manufactured products – the cry that we don’t make ‘stuff’ anymore, we just import it all from low-cost countries and the only jobs are in shops or giving acupuncture to dogs with wealthy owners.

But take a look at the news about British car manufacturing in the Financial Times today. Production of cars and commerical vehicles has jumped to over 1.4m vehicles in 2010 – that’s up 28% on the year before.

But it’s still not like the good old days is it? The Rovers and British Leyland marques that dominated the world?

Well, the absolute peak of vehicle production in the UK was in 1970 when just over 2m units were produced. That’s right, just 2m. Not much more than today is it? And by 1980, car and commercial vehicle production in the UK had slumped to 1.3m units – less than today’s figures.

But they are all foreign brands, none of them are British anymore might seem the next response…

But those companies – like Nissan, Toyota, Honda, VW, GM, and Ford – are all employing local British workers to build their vehicles in Britain, so those companies are creating British jobs and investing in the industrial manufacturing heritage of the nation.

Who complains about Santander being one of the dominant high street banks today (and not British)? Or Green & Blacks chocolate being the dominant brand of organic confectionary (and not British)? Or that cup of (Indian) Tetley tea?

The world has certainly changed since the automotive industry was all about local design, local production, and local sales, but it can’t be said that Britain doesn’t build anything these days. Britain is still building and exporting, it’s just not always British brands that are exported from Britain.
Morris Oxford

Please help the Migrant Tales book project!

The Migrant Tales group on Facebook is starting to get some serious interest. Soon after being set up there are already 120 fans of the book and many ideas starting to flow. But we need more.

I’m starting to contact the editors of various diaspora magazines. You know the free magazines you see scattered around London, mainly outside stations, all focused on a specific migrant community. Where I live in Ealing there are several magazines catering to the local Polish community, nearby in Shepherd’s Bush there are mags for the Kiwi and Aussies.

I need your help to reach out to as many of these diaspora publications as possible. I need to reach their editors to tell them about the book project so they can tell their readers – so we can draw more stories and experiences from these people.

Please get in touch with me if you have a copy of any of these magazines to hand and you can send me the contact email for the title – either leave a comment here on this blog or get in touch with me directly…

Thanks for your help in advance!

Migrant Tales – the book

Migrant Tales is a book project being developed by Mark Kobayashi-Hillary and Angelica Mari which will capture real-life stories from the migrant community living in the UK. The aim is to reach out to migrants from all sections of society, wealthy or poor, legal or illegal, successful or struggling.

The media and political parties, with both using populism to gain votes or sales, have simplified the immigration debate. We want to hear the voice, fears, and expectations of the migrant community – along with the experts and policy makers.

The final goal is to paint a picture of how migrants contribute to British life in the twenty-first century, raising awareness of the realities of migration

We are using Facebook to gather real stories from real people. Take a look at the page here. Please also tell your friends and family about this project and the Facebook page.

if you can’t post information to the wall or if you would prefer to speak to us, get in touch with us on:
migranttales@gmail.com

The book takes this as a starting point for the debate:

1. The idea of a “job for life” is dead.
2. You are now competing with people from all over the world for your job.
3. Companies are using the Internet to send work to countries where labour is cheaper.
4. Companies can produce more because of better technology. This efficiency means they need fewer people.
5. Across the UK, the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.
6. But, if you have the skills, you can migrate and find work in any country.
7. The media and the public complain about immigrants. Experts say immigrants are essential for economic growth.
8. Politicians of all parties want to restrict or ban immigration.
9. Immigration was the most controversial and discussed subject during the 2010 UK general election.
10. If you are not British, but living and working in the UK, what is your contribution to the country?

Please do go and check out the book information on Facebook and contribute if you can.

Mark Kobayashi-Hillary is an author, blogger, and advisor on technology, globalisation and corporate change. He has written several successful management books, including ‘Global Services: Moving to a Level Playing Field’, ‘Who Moved My Job?’, and ‘Building a Future with BRICs’. He is a regular contributor to the British magazines silicon.com and Computer Weekly and blogs about the politics of globalisation for Reuters. Mark is a board member of the UK National Outsourcing Association and a committee member of the British Computer Society ELITE group. He has advised the United Nations on the development of the IT industry in Africa, the Indian government on service exports, and the British government on developing a hi-tech economy. Mark is a visiting lecturer on the MBA programme at London South Bank University.

www.markhillary.com

Angelica Mari is an Italo-Brazilian journalist specialising in business, technology and socioeconomic change. Since the beginning of her career in the late 90s, she held various editorial positions in publications in Brazil until she emigrated to London in 2002.In the UK, Angelica was editor of newswire Unquote, responsible for news on private equity and venture capital in Southern Europe. She also collaborated in the creation of Cleantech – the leading international business magazine in the area of renewable energy launched in 2003 – where she remains as associate editor. Since then, she has positioned itself as one of the leading journalists specialising in management and outsourcing for three years as chief reporter at Computing, the second largest British business technology magazine.
With a solid history of exclusive reporting featuring several FTSE 100 companies, in March 2010 Angelica was invited to join the team at Computer Weekly, the largest enterprise technology publication in the country, as the editor responsible for management and leadership coverage. Angelica also collaborates frequently for publications aimed at the Brazilian community in the UK, such as the magazine Jungle Drums.

http://uk.linkedin.com/in/angelicamari


Who Moved My Job?

Heading down South

I’m back on the train network again today, this time heading south from London to Southampton, on the Hampshire coast. I’m blogging again for the Department for Children, Schools, and Families – on their FutureStory project.

If you haven’t read any of my earlier blog posts about FutureStory, it’s a programme that aims to help young people understand globalisation. What it really means to them and their future. What it means for their home and community. And what it means for companies that are located near to where they live.

This time is particularly interesting for me because I grew up in Hampshire. Though I was actually born in Frimley, Surrey, I lived in Hampshire (just over the border from Frimley) until I bought my first home in London when I was 22.

FutureStory is delivered by the Talent and Enterprise Taskforce, in collaboration with the Department for Business Innovation and Skills, who selected the cities. The delivery partner, Centre for Cities, is an independent think-tank focused on economic trends in cities/city-regions around the UK. The Talent and Enterprise Taskforce is a cross-government Taskforce chaired by the Prime Minister. It was established in 2007 to engage with influential networks and organisations to raise the profile of talent and skills as a key source of competitiveness in the global age.

Lucy Parker chairs the Talent and Enterprise Taskforce and she will be speaking about FutureStory during the event today in Southampton. I’m hoping to capture her on video giving a summary of why it’s important, and who she is hoping to influence.

The short story is that FutureStory aims to promote a wider understanding of how globalisation is changing everyday lives and jobs for the future in an increasingly competitive global economy.

It aims to provide a narrative to help frame and stimulate a broader, more positive and forward looking debate about the strategic direction and success of the UK’s cities and regions when facing the realities of the global economy.

And more particularly:

  • To create a national framework for discussions around globalisation in the wider context of the Government’s narrative of growth, optimism and the economy.
  • To engage local planners, policy makers and stakeholders in creating development strategies for their towns and cities which take them beyond planning and regeneration, and towards thriving in the global economy.
  • To create a narrative for globalisation that makes it meaningful to people by telling the story through tangible examples close-to-home.

I’m going to be taking part in a debate about FutureStory today. Perhaps I should have worn a suit(!) Still, I have a couple of copies of ‘Who Moved my Job?’ with me and that book is written on exactly the same themes as this project, which is possibly why I am so interested in helping this to work. More later, once I capture a few videos of the action today.

What is our FutureStory?

The job for life no longer exists. That’s a fact many of us have become acutely aware of as more and more industries go global. People are migrating, in search of jobs. Jobs themselves are migrating through outsourcing – being sent offshore to other countries using technology such as the Internet.

Sometimes it’s hard to see the good in all this, as the world moves faster and children don’t know what to study because it’s impossible to predict what type of jobs will need what type of qualifications in future. The life of a graduate is anyway very different now. In days gone by all that effort to achieve a degree would have been rewarded with a fairly safe career in a specific industry, possibly even in the same company.

That’s all gone. Your degree will be out of date within a few years, certainly within a decade. Look at India and China. They create over 5m brand new graduates every year. How does the UK compete with that?

FutureStory is an initiative aimed at exploring these questions and connecting local people in their own region to globalisation and what it means to them. The debate around globalisation is often presented in a polarised way – economists supporting the opportunities and campaigners resisting change. FutureStory aims to explore how globalisation really affects people in their own region and how young people can prepare for a global world of work. Rather than stating whether it is right or wrong, the pragmatic view is that globalisation just is. It’s like the sun rising each morning. It just happens.

So, the FutureStory programme aims to help local businesses connect with young people and their teachers to explore where the future jobs are going to come from. It not only allows students the opportunity to explore globalisation with practitioners, but also allows those companies to wake up and explore how globalisation affects the community where they do business.

The question we all need to be asking is, what can I do to succeed in a future knowledge economy? Take a look at the newly-launched FutureStory website here for more information.
Lucy Parker with Tim Smith, Jonny McGuigan, and Mark Churchill from Prudhoe Community High School

So who wants to publish me in India?

The past couple of books I have written ‘Who Moved my Job?’ (Lulu 2008) and ‘Global Services: Moving to a Level Playing Field’ (British Computer Society 2008) have both been published under license for South Asia by Viva in Delhi.

Viva took a look at my most recent book – Talking Outsourcing (Lulu 2009) – and said they are not interested in publishing it because they don’t feel it connects to the reader in the same way as the other books I have written.

That’s fine. They have their opinion. Only I think they are wrong.

Here’s why.

I don’t think they understand that this was a book of a blog. This book is drawn from the best of my ‘Talking Outsourcing’ blog in Computing magazine, featuring blog entries from 2006 to 2009. It’s written and presented as a chronological business diary. Everything that’s going on in the world of services globalisation and outsourcing from my point of view over that three year period.

It’s worth pointing out that the British national tech magazine Computer Weekly thought so highly of my blog, they shortlisted it for blog of the year in their IT Blog Awards 2009. The launch event at London South Bank University was also very successful – take a look at the video here.

Clearly there are a lot of people involved in the hi-tech service sector in India and I am sure they would like to see this book.

It highlights the issues, the trends, the failures, and the successes of the past three years in the global hi-tech industry and India gets a fair share of that business.

Sure, it’s a book of a blog and not written with a new narrative focused on a single topic, but that’s part of the idea here. Take the content from the blog and make it work in a different way by putting it all in one place, so it can be quickly skipped through.

If you are a publisher in India and you are interested in the South Asia rights for this book then get in touch with me. I’m planning to be there in February so if you move fast we could do some personal appearances around the launch. You can reach me here…