Is Your Organization Going Senile?

The social contract, the implicit agreement that once bound workers to organizations for entire careers, is no more.  Off-shoring, right-shoring, belt tightening and a tsunami of technical innovation shifted job demand from trade skills to knowledge work and changed the career landscape in less than a generation.

Hierarchical command-and-control structures that simply asked employees to “show-up, shut-up and do it our way” were replaced with a bottom-line, “what have you done for me lately” mentality that offered no guarantees. As a result; employees have become willing to change jobs with increasing freedom and frequency, reducing job tenure by 2/3, from 11+ years to about 3.5 years.

With employees just as likely to move out as they are to be moved up, our organizations simply don’t have the capacity to retain memories, experiential lessons, recollections and the know-how that only comes from having been there.

So what does this mean for your career?

If you’ve been around for a while, market the benefits of your longevity… to both your productive prowess and the value of what you remember!  Over 95% of all information goes unused or lost, so if you can access what’s in your brain – that may be worth something.

If you’re a new to mid-career worker, as you consider job promotions or job moves, also consider the types of experiences you’ll have right alongside of the other benefits you’ll receive, because someday your memories of those experiences may be a big part of your personal brand value.

Let’s face it, many of our organizations are graying right along with the workforce. A graying organizational design can’t cope with the winds of change and the opportunities that ride them… They might have once but who can remember?

As always, I welcome your thoughts and questions at

Until next week, STAY CONNECTED!