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Coming Jobs War Hardcover – October 4, 2011
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"...fascinating - and frightening - new book..." --Charles M. Blow, The New York Times, September 17, 2011
From the Inside Flap
WHAT EVERYONE IN THE WORLD WANTS IS A GOOD JOB
In a provocative book for business and government leaders, Gallup Chairman Jim Clifton describes how this undeniable fact will affect all leadership decisions as countries wage war to produce the best jobs.
Leaders of countries and cities, Clifton says, should focus on creating good jobs because as jobs go, so does the fate of nations. Jobs bring prosperity, peace, and human development but long-term unemployment ruins lives, cities, and countries.
Creating good jobs is tough, and many leaders are doing many things wrong. They’re undercutting entrepreneurs instead of cultivating them. They’re running companies with depressed workforces. They’re letting the next generation of job creators rot in bad schools.
A global jobs war is coming, and there’s no time to waste. Cities are crumbling for lack of good jobs. Nations are in revolt because their people can’t get good jobs. The cities and countries that act first that focus everything they have on creating good jobs are the ones that will win.
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While I support the thinking contained within the book, the data used is really slim for the inferences made. There's things that need to be said contained within the book, but it would be nice to see some corroborating evidence besides the single source used in the book. As someone who works for a polling firm (Gallup), the author should know that supporting data is needed to smooth out biases found in only one opinion collection - no matter how good the collecting company feels it is.
Secondly, the book seems to ramble a bit in terms of subject matter and could use a firmer hand in editing. Had Clifton had a better editor, he could have easily had two books rather than one. It would have made him more money while being more focused at the same time.
If you're fine with Gladwell-esque qualitative texts, then this one is for you. If you're looking for greater depth....
Warren Buffett expressed concern about opportunities for upcoming generations due to the current (advanced) state of development. He referred to it as "late-stage capitalism".. a term I had not heard before. Which makes me wonder if there really is a solution to this critical problem.
Jeremy Rifkin's book The End of Work provided two basic 'solutions' (with inherent problems of their own) to this situation. In simplest terms we need to decrease the number of hours in a standard work-week (down to 30 by 2020.. and down to 20 by 2040) while also switching to an entertainment-based economy. Without that (his 1990s opinion) we will have massive unemployment.
Personally I'm not sure that any viable solution can mitigate the impact of population growth, globalization, and technological advancement particularly as it pertains to the jobs question.
I hope that I'm wrong.
The simple fact that he has used this book to condense years of data in a consumer based, plain language manner as a conversation starter. This is not meat to be a didactic manual on the cure for all that threatens our jobs or the imminent societal collapse.This is meant to give us a way to frame the past with what we currently face; more intelligent, motivated and massive competition than we, as a culture, have ever faced before.
I think this is important to understand for the voting, informed public. Well worth reading.