Every week I get connected to people I have never met before or get calls from professionals I have known for a while; All reach out with a fundamental problem to which neither they nor I have a solution. They are seeking a job. These are people who wielded power and are suddenly finding themselves without a job. These are individuals who headed corporate communications and drew hefty salaries and are suddenly caught in a situation where that monthly credit into their account is not happening. These are people with 15+ years of experience, in their early to late forties and some even older. These are people who have been there, done that and seen it all and suddenly witnessing a tsunami that has hit them. Some were prepared for this, most were not. The situation is getting grimmer. I have a dozen CVs in my inbox but I have no clue where to send them to. The concerns are as follows:
- These individuals had reached a cost to company that was close to a crore. Something unheard of in corporate communications until a decade ago.
- These individuals did not move with the times and upgrade their skills to become digitally savvy and thought leaders.
- These professionals did public relations for organisations but in the process forgot to focus on some amount of personal branding.
There are atleast a dozen corporate communication professionals who earn between 10 lakh and 12 lakh a month and maybe a half dozen who earn more than that. Barring these who work in large organisations – Indian conglomerates or global tech giants, most others get anything between 3 lakh to 8 lakh per month based on their pedigree which is a combination of three factors (last job + salary, education qualification + previous experience and personal reputation). Well, most people aspire to touch the 1 crore per annum figure.
So, with this background I tweeted this last week – and then there were several discussions on why it has come to this.
So many corporate communications heads with 15+ Years experience have no jobs. I get calls/CVs of 5-6 a month. If anyone is hiring DM me. But this is a crisis looming large – for relevancy. Companies prefer hiring less expensive, younger employees who are digitally savvy.
My thoughts are simply as follows –
- Corporate Communication professionals are invaluable assets to an organisation. However crazy salaries are not the order of the day. Therefore, a course correction of financials as well as talent is taking place.
- Businesses are realising that a smart team at a PR firm can be managed by a young, inexpensive in-house communications head.
- Better educated talent is available in the market versus how the scenario was ten years ago. So, if one was fortunate to rise and grow and accumulate a handsome package, one should also realise just adding years to a CV is pointless. One needs to do a bunch of additional things to continue commanding that salary.
- Lastly, every profession evolves and goes through cycles. The smart thing to do is to earn and save in a practical way and live within one’s means. Exuberance and splurging didn’t take anyone too far.
- There are solutions that one can always arrive at to ensure a steady flow of income takes place. Because there is enough for everyone’s need but not for everyone’s greed.