BusinessWeek recently had an interesting article on the challenges facing young people in this economy. Many of them just can’t land jobs.
Bright, eager—and unwanted. While unemployment is ravaging just about every part of the global workforce, the most enduring harm is being done to young people who can’t grab onto the first rung of the career ladder.
Affected are a range of young people, from high school dropouts, to college grads, to newly minted lawyers and MBAs across the developed world from Britain to Japan. One indication: In the U.S., the unemployment rate for 16- to 24-year-olds has climbed to more than 18%, from 13% a year ago.
For people just starting their careers, the damage may be deep and long-lasting, potentially creating a kind of “lost generation.” Studies suggest that an extended period of youthful joblessness can significantly depress lifetime income as people get stuck in jobs that are beneath their capabilities, or come to be seen by employers as damaged goods.
Equally important, employers are likely to suffer from the scarring of a generation.
This danger of “scarring” seems real, but if you find yourself in this group you have to be proactive and NOT let this hurt you. That may sound easy, as options are now clearly limited. However, on the other hand, the dire condition of the economy can also be used to alter your perceptions of what you need at this time in your life. Many graduates expected to get a high-paying job immediately upon graduation, and now many of those job aren’t available. Yet is that what you really need RIGHT NOW?
In many cases the answer is no. Maybe you can now consider a cool internship that pays little but offers an incredible experience. Perhaps you can take a much-needed break and go on that backpacking trip that you dreamed of doing after college. This of course depends on your funds, though the cost of travel has plummeted.
Alternatively, you can be aggressive about doing something entrepreneurial or contracting out services online.
We know if sucks out there, but you have to make the best of the situation you’re facing. Get motivated, and good things will happen!
Tags: accidental entrepreneurs, career ladder, college grads, contracting out services online, entrepeneurs, forced entrepreneurs, high school dropouts, high-paying job, internships, lawyers, lifetime income, lost generation, MBAs, unemployment, unemployment rate, unintended entrepreneurs, youthful joblessness