90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
‘Tours Of Duty': Employer-Employee Relationships Redefined

Lifetime employment is over. Maybe it’s time to think of “tours of duty” on the job.

(Victor1558/Flickr)

Ben Casnocha and Chris Yeh say employers and employees are no longer in a relationship of loyalty but one of alliance instead. They argue both parties benefit, even if the relationship isn’t forever. (Victor1558/Flickr)

The old dream, for many, when it came to work:  find a great employer, commit for life, go the distance, retire in style – or at least security.  Today, just talking about that picture will get you the snort reserved for dreamers.  It’s beyond “in tatters.”  For almost everyone, it’s gone.

But what’s the new model, beyond every man, woman and corporation for themselves?  My guests today say think of your working life as “tours of duty.”  Four-year chunks where you and an employer agree on a mission.  And then, most likely, you’re gone.

This hour, On Point:  considering the “tour of duty” work life.

- Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Ben Casnocha, entrepreneur and founder of Comcate, an e-government technology firm. He co-authored “The Start-Up Of You” with Reid Hoffman. (@bencasnocha)

Chris Yeh, entrepreneur and vice president of marketing at PBworks. (@chrisyeh)

Robert Bruner, Dean of the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business Administration. His remarks to the graduating class of 2013 last month stressed the importance of not jumping ship after only a few years with a company.

From Tom’s Reading List

Harvard Business Review: Tours of Duty: The New Employer-Employee Compact — “For most of the 20th century, the compact between employers and employees in the developed world was all about stability…Corporations, for their part, enjoyed employee loyalty and low turnover. Then came globalization and the Information Age. Stability gave way to rapid, unpredictable change. Adaptability and entrepreneurship became key to achieving and sustaining success. These changes demolished the traditional employer-employee compact and its accompanying career escalator in the U.S. private sector; they are in varying degrees of disarray elsewhere.”

Entrepreneur: Methods For Building Employee Loyalty — “Loyal employees are the heart of successful companies. When people feel fulfilled at their jobs, they go above and beyond to help the organization improve. They share expertise, resolve conflicts, suggest improvements, boost morale, help co-workers, conserve resources, and more. ‘Those behaviors make groups and organizations more effective — sales are better, production loss is lower, everything is better,’ says Diane Bergeron, an assistant professor at Case Western’s Weatherhead School of Management in Cleveland.”

The New York Times: Over 50, And Under No Illusions — “For millions of Americans over 50, this isn’t a bad dream —  it’s grim reality. The recession and its aftermath have hit older workers especially hard. People 55 to 64 — an age range when many start to dream of kicking back — are having a particularly hard time finding new jobs. For a vast majority of this cohort, being thrown out of work means months of fruitless searching and soul-crushing rejection.”

Extra: Commencement Address

On May 18, former White House speechwriter Jon Lovett spoke to Pitzer College graduates in Claremont, Calif. about fighting the culture of BS.

At the end of our hour, we’re featuring an excerpt from Lovett’s commencement speech:

Watch his full speech (or read the transcript):

 

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Jan 26, 2015
Yemeni protesters gather during a demonstration to show their support to Houthi Shiite rebels in Sanaa, Yemen, Friday, Jan. 23, 2015.  (AP)

Yemen in turmoil, a new king in Saudi Arabia. We’ll look at what’s next for the Arabian Peninsula. Plus: the President’s trip to the Indian subcontinent.

Jan 26, 2015
Frederick Daniel Hardy's "Baby's Birthday" (1867) shows a typical Victorian English family at home.  (Wikimedia / Creative Commons)

Brush your teeth with soot, stay away from water, wear a steel corset. We’ll talk with the author of “How to be a Victorian.” Strange ways from another age.

RECENT
SHOWS
Jan 23, 2015
People enter the Arapahoe County Justice Center in Centennial, Colo., Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015. The jury selection process in the trial of Aurora theater shooting suspect James Holmes began Tuesday, and is expected to take several weeks to a few months. Holmes is charged with killing 12 people and wounding more than 50 in an Aurora movie theater in 2012 (AP)

The Marathon bombing, the Aurora movie theater shootings, and the challenges of picking an impartial jury.

 
Jan 23, 2015
A Cuban flag and an American flag stand in the press room during the second day of talks between U.S. and Cuban officials, in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015. (AP)

President Obama comes out swinging in his State of the Union. High level talks in Cuba. Japanese hostages. “American Sniper” controversy. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: January 23, 2015
Friday, Jan 23, 2015

New thoughts on Facebook, new analysis of State of the Union twitter activity and new weekend excitement. New! And exciting!

More »
Comment
 
Meet On Point’s Interns: Spring 2015
Friday, Jan 23, 2015

Good news! We have interns, and they are wonderful, and here they are for the spring term. Meet them digitally, right here.

More »
2 Comments
 
Caller To Author Ron Rash: ‘You Cared About People Like Me’
Thursday, Jan 22, 2015

An unexpected caller from South Carolina brings back guest Ron Rash’s years as a community college professor in a movingly real way.

More »
1 Comment