If you find yourself in the sinking ship, like the industry you are in right now, don't despair - if you learn how to give (perhaps in a new industry), you will outlast the ones who only learn how to take.
The people who have already lost their jobs might be facing challenges they didn't sign up for, but on the other hand - they are already free from this hamster wheel and can start something which they can be proud of. The advice is always the same - the minute we are given an opportunity at a new job is the minute we should start preparing to lose it.
We are at the beginning of the Connection Economy (as Seth Godin calls it). Whoever has the means to connect people who share a common mission, will win.
But in fact, it's not like the old industrial economy model - a few people on the top win while the rest of us are cogs in the machine. No, it's quite the opposite - it's a game where every participant wins by living a meaningful and purposeful life.
Winning in the new economy is defined by how much can we help each other, inspire, and lead. The person, who helps the most - wins. And helping is giving. So in other words - the person who gives the most - wins.
And winning in this sense doesn't mean some point in the (distant) future where we look back and say to ourselves (and to others) - "look, how much I have won" or "how much money I have accumulated". No, the winning is done every minute every day when we have the privilege to do work that matters. Not to a lot of people, but to a few who would miss us, if we were gone
A few is enough because if a few people care deeply about your work, they will tell other people. Maybe not the same people. Maybe not even in the same industry. But people are always talking about the things that matter to them. People tell people. That's how you grow (or shrink).
Likewise losing in this sense doesn't mean the point in the future (or the present) where we say - "I'm broke" or "it's all over". Losing means the choice of not giving. Because it's always a choice.
But losing (like winning) in the connection economy is not permanent. Luckily, we all have yet another chance to give something today and start a new cycle of generosity, vulnerability, and art.
It's scary, it's slow, and it's not easy. Exactly the opposite of what the industrial economy taught us. But it's simple - make more mistakes, earn more trust, and share more work that you want to be remembered for.
[HT to my friend John Higgins who found his courage (the courage that we all have within us) to connect a group of musicians in the tiny town of Whyalla in South Australia to celebrate the 330th anniversary of J.S. Bach at the concert on the 21st of March. That's giving. Therefore that's winning.]
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