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CEO of Deal Architect, a top advisory boutique recognized in The Black Book of Outsourcing, author of a widely praised book on technology enabled innovation, The New Polymath, prolific blogger, writing about technology-enabled innovation at New Florence, New Renaissance and about waste in technology at Deal Architect.  Previously Analyst  at Gartner, Partner with PwC Consulting. Keynoted at many business and technology conferences and has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, The Financial Times, CIO Magazine, and other executive and technology publications.

2 responses to “What do people do all day?”

  1. TomS

    This ignores a couple of items:
    1. If you accept the notion that it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert at a given skill; and a given job might comprise a basket of, say, two to five skills, then you’re looking at 20,000 or significantly more hours of work to become a true master of the skills that your job requires. That’s 20 years or more – assuming you’re very productive with the time you have on the job and use every minute of it developing or practicing one of its requisite skills.

    Sure, there are still many job descriptions that require the same set of skills that one has built up some mastery of. But by that time in one’s career, picky employers will often not accept the ability to transmogrify into a thing that a candidate’s resume says they’re fundamentally not by virtue of the industry sector or day to day job requirements they’ve fulfilled in the past; regardless of the actual skill match.

    2. Some people (many?) are not interested in change. In fact, change terrifies them. They would much prefer the stability and humdrum boredom of a dependable job at the same company without much change in their level of responsibility over the course of their work life. I’ve met people like this; I’ve worked with people like this.

    I’m not suggesting that the typical employee in the Silicon Valley tech sector (which is nearby for me; and in which I have worked in the software industry) would subscribe to the second point. And I’m unclear about the degree to which the former point applies across that particular board. I would guess that developers tend to remain developers, unless they move into management. (Or score the big payout from an IPO and decide to open a B&B or custom pool cue manufacturing plant).

    I guess the point is that while it’s true there is a fantastic diversity of job descriptions, people’s reticence to “re-pot” themselves combined with employers’ desire to hire those with at least some level of competence in the skill areas they require for a given job mean that availing oneself of the seeming infinitude of job descriptions is not something most will have the luxury of pursuing.

    1. Vinnie Mirchandani

      Tom nice comments. The 10,000 hours is a Malcolm Gladwell concept which I am not sure companies are willing to invest in or should expect. If they did they would roll back the over credentialling we have had in last couple of decades where they expected more college education for even basic jobs and reinvest in apprentice models

      Change is terrifying but the reality is corporations are living shorter lives and looking for more variable work arrangements. Workers need to similarly become more agile. From some census data it is already happening – we are moving jobs if not occupations every few years