What resource crisis?

Over the past year or so I have really been thinking about and questioning the entire concept of a resource crisis that we apparently feel in physical asset maintenance. (Again inspired by Tom Peters - the Uber-Guru) And to be frank, I don't think it exists. I think there is a far more serious trend here that we are not noticing, and one that will change the way we do work forever. Yes - everyones retiring and lesser people are taking to the field than previously. But this is only part of the problem. Also - people aren't hanging around anymore. Recall the "job for life" that your father used to talk about? That's pretty long gone now. But still we get people working with the same mentality.
  • Vertical loyalty to the role and the company
  • Waiting around until your inherent abilities are "recognized" and the world rewards you for your patience
  • White collar sweatshops where your time is spent doing what computers will be doing in 3-5 years time
  • Talent recruited locally
Today, technology and competition (mainly) have changed this forever.
  • We no longer have a job for life, but rather a role for now.
  • Instead of vertical loyalty, we are more loyal to our disciplines, peers and networks (Internationally) Because thats where our opportunities can spring from.
  • We seem to be gravitating (through a number of reasons) to more specialized roles. (Eg RCM facilitator, RBI implementations, Tribologists etc) And the world will line up to pay for specialized and talented individuals.
  • We lok for talent anywhere it can be found. Different states, countries, cultures and industries.
Think about it. We in the USA are being challenged economically by growing forces in India, the Middle East and China. They have limitless pools of moderate cost labor. We have limited pools of high cost labor. The outcome is obvious. I think that we (as talented people) and our companies (as the users of talent) are going to continue to thrive in the increasingly open workplace, then there are a few things that may come in handy. For the talent (Us)
  1. Nourish your network
  2. Update your Value statement (CV) regularly
  3. Specialize and generalize.  Where can you add value and how can you be up there with the best of them.
  4. Life as a learning journey. This is a life skill. the ability to continue learning, and to continue to develop your skills. (In all sorts of areas) (Tom Peters says... be Distinct or Extinct)
There will always be work for the best people. So your goal is to be one of the best people. For the users of talent:
  1. Change the way you deal with your people. reward and recognize, pay competitive rates, offer additional value options (CV notches) develop them and fully engage them
  2. Look for ways to tap into lower cost talent from other marketplaces. It is an open world after all.
  3. Change the way you search for and hold onto talent
  4. Realize that talent is "on the move" and you probably won't have them for ever...
Frightening stuff. Scares me anyway. I don't necessarily believe in all of these ways of working. But, i see them as inevitable and something that we are going to have to adapt to or watch as the world passes us by.