BLOGS:

Win-Win - Jobs for the Unemployed, Skills & Expertise for the Midsize Companies

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New grads are unable to find jobs and laid-off baby boomer can't find them either.  Forget about the jobless numbers cooked up by the bureaucrats and politicians in Washington DC - they live in a 'make believe world' where they are entirely focused on 'managing the optics', expanding their empire or getting re-elected.   I see highly qualified - experienced as well as knowledgeable - people among the long-term unemployed, and companies that make poor business decisions because they 'don't know what they don't know'.  There are many businesses run by the young that could use the help of the experienced baby boomers; and, many businesses run by baby boomers with poor knowledge of the millennial market, new technologies and the millennial workforce.

There is a way to create jobs for the young and the old, and to help businesses make better-informed decisions.  We need to create jobs and match them to the needs of companies that need the skills of many of those unemployed people.

People are fond of separating companies into startups, small companies, midsize companies and the well-known large companies.  Startups are clearly aspirational when it comes to creating jobs.  Most startups start small, stay small and die young; and those that grow take many years to do so. So, they are not a source of quick job creation.  Sure, you could have the next Google in there but are you willing to pick the winner and wait years for that company to ‘appear’?  Then, let’s take small companies.  These are the many mom and pop businesses that surround us.  While there are many, they do not grow and add jobs.  At most, they may add a few low paying jobs.  So, that’s not a source of quick job creation for the educated unemployed.

Then, let’s take the large companies that most of us have heard of – the Fortune 1000 companies.  Most of these companies are growing overseas (where 95% of the world's population lives and the markets growing fastest).  They create few jobs in the US. Do you want to give them tax incentives (you are paying them thousands upon thousands of dollars for every job created) so they can create jobs?  Remember that as soon as another country offers a better incentive, they will relocate.  So, that segment is neither a good source of sustainable job creation nor a cost-effective (or reliable) one.

There is one segment we haven’t talked about – the midsize companies.  These are companies with revenues between $5 million and $500 million.  These companies have already proven their viability as a business and have much room to grow and expand – from local to regional or national, and also internationally.  They tend to hire locally around their existing facilities where they know the community, and tend not to chase every incentive scheme.  These companies have the greatest potential to create jobs quickly.  Many of these midsize companies are run by boomers with little knowledge of the millennials and the potential of their market; and, many under-40 CEOs who don't  have the benefit of time-proven business experience of the baby boomers.  But, there is no mechanism or platform to connect the boomers and millennials to the midsize companies that need help.

The US Small Business Administration (and many people) lump all companies into two groups – big and small.   If the midsize companies were treated as a distinct group, people would see the potential of this group to provide jobs and 'grow the economies' around them.

So, the journey of creating millions of American jobs begins with a simple and obvious step - enabling the midmarket to be more successful.  As they grow , they will create jobs and most of them will employ Americans.  In case you are still not convinced, let me give you a few facts.  Did you know that 31% of all non-governmental revenues during the last census were generated by midmarket companies?  Did you know that 34% of all non-governmental jobs were provided by midmarket companies?  Did you know that 44% of the net jobs (hiring less firings and layoffs) during the last census period were created by midmarket companies? 

The midmarket is the most significant engine of our economy when it comes to creating jobs, and sustainable jobs at that.  If only we paid attention to the data (instead of oversimplifying the companies into two groups – big and small), paid attention to these midmarket companies and helped them to succeed, we’d all benefit with greater job creation for Americans across the country.  The unemployed baby boomers and millennials can help these companies do better.  And, you wouldn't have highly qualified baby boomers sitting at home among the long-term unemployed ranks or have fresh graduates who understand millennials and new technologies staying with their parents while seeking jobs.

Companies that 'don't know what they don't know' could benefit from the currently unemployed new graduates and the experienced, unemployed baby boomers.  Let's connect the two groups and grow the economy.

Who can you tell about the potential of the American midmarket?  Who is an unemployed baby boomer or millennial that you can help gain employment with one of these midmarket companies? Let's 'connect' these groups.  Do reach out to me if you have some ideas - please comment below first (and share this with your friends and colleagues), so more people can join the conversation - and let's do something about it.

CONNECT the unemployed baby boomers and millenials to the midmarket - jobs for the unemployed and necessary skills and expertise for the middle market companies.