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
Aug 31, 2015
This July 30, 2014 photo shows Margerie Glacier, one of many glaciers that make up Alaska's Glacier Bay National Park. With melting glaciers and rising seas as his backdrop, President Barack Obama will visit Alaska next week to press for urgent global action to combat climate change, even as he carefully calibrates his message in a state heavily dependent on oil. (AP Photo/Kathy Matheson)

The scramble for the Arctic. President Obama’s in Alaska. We’ll look at the stakes.

Aug 31, 2015
Oliver Sacks (Elena Seibert)

Oliver Sacks, celebrated neurologist and best-selling author, has died at 82. We’ll listen back to our remarkable 2013 interview with Oliver Sacks on life and aging.

RECENT
SHOWS
Aug 31, 2015
A television photographer takes video of a memorial for the two slain journalist in front of the studios of WDBJ-TV7 in Roanoke, Va., Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. Reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward from the station were killed during a live broadcast Wednesday.  (AP)

Lessons from the Roanoke TV shootings. We’ll look at the way forward with the New York Times’ Nick Kristof and other top thinkers.

 
Aug 28, 2015
Lightning first ignited the Meadow fire on July 20, 2014 in Yosemite. By September 8, the fire had charred 2,582 acres. Bernie Krause has recorded soundscapes of national parks destroyed by large areas of forest fires. Listen below.  (National Park Service)

A legendary natural sound collector shares his recordings. We’ll listen in.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: August 28, 2015
Friday, Aug 28, 2015

You say #hashtag, we say, #forwhat? That, plus Usain Bolt and the ominous lurking Segway cameraman. Friday!

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: August 21, 2015
Friday, Aug 21, 2015

Do you even click? (And other reflections on link sharing and web commenting).

More »
6 Comments
 
Do You Recognize Amazon’s Workplace Culture? Tell Us!
Tuesday, Aug 18, 2015

Do you recognize the workplace conditions described in a recent New York Times piece on Amazon? We want to hear from you!

More »
5 Comments