The Case for Job/Career Jumpers
mayo 13, 2020

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The past eight weeks of the global COVID-19 crisis have shed some light on a host of socio-political realities and brought to the fore many questions centered on economic existence. Beyond the catastrophe visited upon the public health sector, COVID-19 has facilitated broad community-centered, very public discussion and evaluation of financial systems but more importantly lively dialogue of economic sustainability.

Of particular merit is human capital and the pivotal roles it has played during this global event where, in the absence of some hard resources, human resources and accompanying skills-sets have been an invaluable commodity, which has helped to ensure the wellbeing of others during the crisis.

This mobilization of the overabundance soft resources in the social sphere are easily transferable in other sectors of the economy, where talent individuals can fully employ their competencies and skills sets in public sector and/or private enterprise. 

Still many are forced to re-image a pre COVID-19 world whilst other view and even welcome this crisis as an opportunity to envision and create a new reality where a premium is placed on environmental and social justice issues within a new sustainable global model.

With an estimated 22 million jobs lost in the United States alone and another million through Europe within the eight weeks of the crisis, the ILO (International Labour Organization) and the European Employment Commissioner Nicolas Schmit agree with the forecast of 12 million full-time jobs being lost in Europe.

The projected global job loss of livelihoods looms greater, especially in the face of uncertainty which this crisis thrusts upon us collectively and in particular those in decision-making roles. 

The term “career jumpers” originates from employers and HR professionals’ who hold assumptions of individuals with multiple short tenured and/or simultaneous careers failing to possess the staying power

Throughout the course of my professional career as international civil servant, entrepreneur, public speaker and consultant, I have had the opportunity to discover different cultures and to meet dynamic individuals, including leaders, innovators and human resource professional that those in hiring positions termed as “Job/Career Jumpers“.

The term “career jumpers” originates from employers and HR professionals’ who hold assumptions of individuals with multiple short tenured and/or simultaneous careers failing to possess the staying power.

For this reason untrained hiring managers/HR professionals fall short to identify and/or value the potential contribution of a “career jumper” since they themselves fail to recognize the immediate value of such individuals, which is outside of the average 3  to 5 year readied of rate of investment (ROI) per hire.

As a consequence, many organizations lose opportunities to fully harness resource untapped and associated competencies of these unique individuals. In spite of the fact that “job jumpers” are a dynamic human capital that can develop institutional capacity in relation to their professional experience, which is a byproduct of competencies developed through their professional and life experiences. 

Further, whatever is the reason(s) for a job jumper, they have accumulated cross-sectoral exposure in different contexts and working situations is marked by their greater adaptability and flexibility periods of crisis, across specific subject matter and functional teams.

As result of their intrinsic curiosity and drive, which is enhanced by way of multiple careers, these individuals are poised to skillfully deal with fresh challenges in new roles where they use their professional competences, multidimensional talents and expertise across different sectors.

Moreover, since these “job jumpers” are able to identify and create new opportunities, see patterns and bring new insights, many have become consultants, advisors, project managers, innovators, entrepreneurs, subject matter experts and freelancers.

An example of on  such person with multidimensional talents is Randy Komisar and Kabir Sehgal. Randy earned a J.D. from Harvard Law School, he worked with Steve Jobs in the acquisition of Pixar and eventually assume the role of CEO of several companies and venture capitalists firms.

Kabir, who himself has authored the article “Why You Should Have (at least) Two Careers”, describe having four vocations: Corporate strategist at a Fortune 500 company, US Navy Reserve officer, author of several books and record producer. 

Taking the above into consideration, the leaders and HR professionals must seize upon every opportunity to develop adaptable workforce by broadening their own insights and by developing initiatives, beyond the short sighted ROI per hire, that promote innovation among their workforce. It is through the just-in-time detection of dynamic and talented individuals that this can be achieved.

An example of a missed opportunity came 10 months ago during a market research that I was carrying out with one of my associates. The aim of the research was to help HR executives and business owners identify value, develop initiatives and build upon market’s opportunities.

During this research, we interviewed several executive and business owners with the primary objective to help them align their pain points with talent identification initiatives, acquisition and management process to our human capital success predictor solution.

After the meeting one of the executive expressed regret for not identifying (my) multidimensional skills during a job interview few years ago. Nevertheless, this recognition has positively impact our mutual appreciation of challenges in areas where we can effectively partner to develop sustainable solutions.

In aim of recognizing and nurturing the multidimensional talents of “job/career jumpers”, leaders and HR professionals must upskills their human capital abilities in ways that enable them to purposefully engage and utilize the skills of these unique individuals within their organization

The World Economic Forum (WEF) Future of Jobs Report highlights the importance of having a workforce with multidimensional talents to be competitive and able to identify new opportunities and value creation in the industrial revolution 4.0. In aim of recognizing and nurturing the multidimensional talents of “job/career jumpers”, leaders and HR professionals must upskills their human capital abilities in ways that enable them to purposefully engage and utilize the skills of these unique individuals within their organization. 

 

Alexis Del Rio

Founder DEL RIO Consulting

Mentor of The Global School for Social Leaders

Originally published in  Linkedin