Is the Recession Over?


I know the Recession well. I remember sitting in a Starbucks with some friends in Laguna Niguel in August 2008 and taking about starting a networking group to help people in transition. Snap your fingers and Laguna Niguel Connectors has almost 4000 members. People needed a place to go when the world melted.

Things seem to be getting better on the economic and employment front.

I read the OC Register today.  Unemployment in the land of milk and honey and housewives on TV is down to 4.9%.  Things aren’t that good  over at the Register though.

This is great news for South Coast Plaza and Fashion Island.

Time to visit and start buying those $300 sunglasses and $700 handbags again.

I remember many blooms and busts in California or Califakia.  A few years ago we had the glory days of the mortgage boom. Your home was a giant ATM machine.  Come one, come all and take a large withdrawal to buy things you really don’t need.

Then the world melted and thrift was the badge of the day.  Foreclosures do that.

Not everyone has received good news in the OC.

Just a few months ago I went to a networking event hosted by a prominent local recruiting company.  There were a 100 unemployed people in the room.  They lived in the houses of Orange County and formerly were paid $100K plus a year I am sure.  A hundred times a 100K I thought.  There’s a lot of lost earning power in this room.

I also read an article in the New York Times about how to measure unemployment and employment and how to read the facts.  While unemployment stats may look better, the article said that the most important fact are the employment percentages.  They haven’t changed in many states because people have stopped looking for work.  The article concluded that the recovery has a long way to go.

I bet everyone in transition or every young person without a job out there would agree with that.

When I was a puppy I heard an expression. It said that figures don’t lie but liars figure.

I guess nothing has changed.

Politicians from both sides of the aisle are taking credit. We did it or we would have done it better. Their chatter is the same because they rarely get fired.

Everybody forgets what policies started the economic decline, just like we don’t remember who started the wars.

Although hiring is much better in Southern, CA this is the New Normal.

Toyota is moving from California to Texas.  Those that don’t want to go will have to learn how to find a job in the New Normal. That is tough for some.  Everything they have learned about career planning doesn’t matter today.  Some of those people found their jobs in a newspaper or by sending a resume to the hiring manager with a nice cover letter. How’s that working for you today?

I got an email from another friend the other day.  They have worked at their company for over a decade.  They were hiring a new CMO.  Not good I thought.

You see in the New Normal we will always be close to recession, change, plant relocations, new bosses, changing consumer behavior that makes jobs go away.

There is only one way to survive the New Normal and this is to market yourself better and to make sure you rise above the top on Google.  This is the career scorecard of today.  This will remain constant in the New Normal, while everything else around you changes.

Connect with Hank on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook:


Watch Why Young People Shouldn’t Try to Get a Job.

Read an article Are You Ready to Get Fired?


One thought on “Is the Recession Over?

  1. Another big shift that no one seems to be talking about is the shift of people who have been out of work off welfare and onto disability. This really skews the unemployment rates.

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