Jobs – Evolution
The Butcher, the Baker, and the Candlestick Maker – were jobs highlighted and immortalized in a famous nursery rhyme, Rub a Dub Dub, first published in 1798. Town by town – these were widespread jobs of the day, and these three trades/professions required skills and talents and various personality traits to produce results. These jobs are now less prevalent and have significantly evolved. For instance, the advent of electricity and ever-improving light bulbs [thanks, Ben Franklin, Thomas Edison and many others] to minimize the functional use of candles.
Today’s jobs still require various skills and personality traits to yield results, and we call them – Success Attributes. Our never-ending challenge is to understand these elements, add to them for both job/career progress, apply them to new roles, and communicate them when seeking a new job in your resume and when interviewing.
Yes, today’s jobs are different and evolving; and we are changing. Let’s examine this evolution further.
The Butcher – As recently as the 1950’s, some of the largest companies in the Fortune 500 were titans such as Swift and Hormel, the Spam producer- companies in the meat packing industry. Our local and corner grocery stores were frequently run by the butcher, and the meat department was the main attraction. Many of us can remember visiting the many neighborhood grocery stores – often owned and run by `the butcher’. He also sold a variety of food and goods including our favorite sodas/pop and those packs of baseball cards (and bubble gum). Chain grocery stores, microwaves, manufacturing efficiencies and fast food restaurants were among the many forces of change to the industry and to the butcher’s job (both in numbers and in role). Today’s [fewer] butchers have become specialists in packaging, culinary cuts, and `sushi’. The accomplished, successful ones also have developed and demonstrate their technical, customer service and communication skills as well as friendly, positive, and resourceful personality traits.
The Baker – Some of us can remember visiting the neighborhood bakery where we enjoyed the smells and samples. Today, high-volume production and distribution by corporations keeps the loaves, rolls, and pastries in restaurants and on the shelves of large grocery stores as well as a multitude of convenience stores. This has certainly reduced the number of local bakeries and traditional `baker’ jobs, today. Specialty bakery enterprises still flourish – for special events and the aficionados of freshness and taste. Today’s successful bakers have developed both technical and interpersonal skills, perfected their creative talents, and worked hard with long hours and with a dedication to quality, excellence, and customer service. These are also the required and transferable traits which are valuable in a variety of other production and service roles.
The Candlestick Maker – The `lighting’ jobs of today are varied and found at power plants, at bulb and tube facilities, and in a variety of installation and service operations. They require very different technical skills and process and problem-solving skills as well as dependable and adaptable traits. Only `specialty’ candle production for scents, special-occasion and seasonal products seems to rival the profile requirement of the candlestick maker job of yesterday. Many have learned the new, different skills and adapted to produce, market, and serve in our `well-lit’ work and play and living environments.
What’s happening with your job and profession, today?
What are you doing to prepare and adapt for tomorrow?