Don't Let Your Job Title Define You
In 2013, 1.7 million students will graduate from college and enter the workforce. Roughly 340 thousand students (20%), will become underemployed. This means a life of retail with college loans to pay off, in addition to living expenses. If these students knew they’d wind up in retail, I’m sure they wouldn’t have added a $300 loan payoff on top of minimum wage! Related: Why It’s Absolutely Necessary To Discover Your Passion This isn’t the first time students have received the brunt of an economic downturn. When I graduated in 2000, my friends moved to California with dreams of overnight success at super sexy startups. Six months later, they were unemployed and all their stock options were worthless. I looked overseas to get employment, as did many others. The difference today is that we can begin to curate our own body of work more easily, less expensively, and more visibly than ever before. After I gave a talk I at Belmont University this year, Griffin Mckenzie came up to me to tell me about her blog: griffinmckenzie.com. There, not only does she display her resume, but she collects her thoughts, shares insights, and builds a professional reputation not attached to any job. In 1998, Tom Peters said in his famous “The Brand Called You” article, “You don't belong to any company for life, and your chief affiliation isn't to any particular function. You're not defined by your job title, and you're not confined by your job description.” What was true for executives reading Fortune magazine in 1998 is finally true for everyone else today.