Overcoming the mid-career, mid-skill problem – Part-II

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Following Part-I , its useful to understand work in context of the employees role in the chain:

                                                        input—>process—-> output 

All work can be categorized in these three categories. Within these categories you can subdivide work finer. For eg. in the input side supply management can involve indirect purchases (eg. stationery) and direct purchases (raw materials). There are several outsourced purchasing agents who take care of indirect for entire industries. So if an individual is specialized in indirect it might be useful to consider moving to a specialized contractor who does only indirect materials.

The process part is fascinating as it includes all kinds of organizations like manufacturing, service and associated functions like HR,Finance and Accounting.For eg. entire swathes of the HR function from recruiting,training,payroll,benefits to outplacement are being done by low cost specialized contractors. So if you are in an organization where you do one of these, think actively of moving to the relevant contractor industry. Once you move though, you might find yourself involved in the sales function of the contractor. Here be flexible and enthusiastic because you bring deep contextual (say payroll) organizational knowledge to the table and you add more-value as an employee.

There are no quick fixes to this huge problem, and those affected might find this post just skimming issues. But thinking about re-inventing yourself is more urgent than ever.

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