Career Change Context

John Kay, in his book “Obliquity”
Makes the point
That we rarely achieve what we set out to achieve
In fact, most successes come about indirectly.

So, too, with careers.
It is not until we stand and look back
That we see why things happened in the order they did.
Not cause and effect, this happened because that happened
Rather, that that had to happen so that this could.

And, so, we come to you.
There is a very good chance
That you are a male middle manager 45+
(or that you know one)

Being of that age in these times (the 2020s)
You are facing a confluence
Of four major spheres of change.

They are:

  • personal
  • organisational
  • societal
  • technological

And right now they are all in flux.

In times gone by (one or two generations ago)
The personal sphere in flux was the mid-life crisis.
In times gone by, the other three spheres were relatively stable.

You could expect, for instance:

  • jobs for life,
  • clear role expectations,
  • technology that changed at human speed.

That is no longer true.

So the collision is more pronounced.

This four-way collision,
Coupled with a feeling of
No. Way. Out.
(Bateson’s double-bind)
Means that the suicide rate for over 45s
Is the fastest growing across all demographics.

The stakes are high.

So it is well worth the effort
To work out
How to deal with this situation
Before suicidal thoughts enter the frame.

In the first instance,
That means accepting one’s lot
(however temporarily)
And trying to make the most of
What you have, in the place you have it.

In the second,
It means finding a way of coping
With the massive changes going on in your life.
And re-finding the job satisfaction you once had.

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