This past weekend I went to Clearwater Beach, Florida for a quick getaway.
You’re asking what does this have to do with career management. Right? Let me get to the story…early yesterday we walked along the beach to enjoy the solitude and limited crowd. As we walked I couldn’t help but notice trash (cups, wrappers, toys, plastic bags, napkins, etc) littering every few feet (literally). At this time, more people began walking the beach, intentionally stepping over or ignoring the filth. Not sure what they were thinking but it must have been: “won’t worry about picking up the trash, I didn’t throw it away so I don’t need to clean it up.”
Before 20 minutes I collected two loads of trash.
Now we’re getting to career management….
Is the “I didn’t create the mess so I don’t have to clean it up” philosophy carried over to employment? Like it or not, there’s a mess out there! Who is going to fix the problem? I suspect the first thing to do is examine the roots of the economic / employment problem and then develop a plan to resolve it. To most (as witnessed on the beach), the attitude of “I will let someone else fix it—perhaps the government,” remains status quo. Besides, what can one person do with such an epidemic?
Much like my picking up litter on the beach, we all need to do our part…okay, so what is my or our part?
I believe parents, teachers, community, and the media share a piece of the responsibility equation. In other words:
- Parents should create a home environment conducive to educational advancement; where excuses and circumstances are not allowed.
- Teachers should pick up students falling behind, losing sight, being ignored, and/or or those being intentionally side-stepped…giving each student a foundation of belief and confidence.
- Community must be a place where fear, intolerance, crime, and prejudice are eliminated. No doubt the supporting cast runs deep and affects each one of us. But each one of us can dedicate time to tutor or donate books, supplies, etc. to a worthy cause.
- Media must display the value of education and the benefit that care will bring not only to the initial recipient, but to the countless of others who will be touched. The media has created a social and economic paradigm following the tenets of instant gratification while undercutting the moral fabric of which built this country.
Our economy has issues, plenty of them for all to share. Looking at a gestalt approach to resolve today’s ailments, each piece is just as important as any other. If we want to progress, it must begin with sacrifice, dedication, and hard work—even if it means bending over and picking up items often ignored or intentionally thrown away.
Together is the only way to beat the greed, the hatred, and the fear.
At the end of the day at the beach, I saw just as much litter as the day before…as if my effort was a futile attempt to make a difference. Perhaps nobody cares about our beaches, about our economy, or about the next generation. I’m not buying into that.
I’ll continue to believe parents, teachers, our community, and the media have the capacity to make a difference….what do you think?
Danny Huffman, MA, CPRW, CPCC, CEIP
Education Career Services: http://www.educationcs.com
Career Services International: http://www.careersi.com