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Key 2010 Trend: The Rise of the Personal Brand App

2010Nomadic.jpgEarly in December, I was contacted by an AP reporter who was doing a story on the key trends that would impact the economy into the future.

A brief part of my comments appeared in an article, “Crystal ball for 2010 sees changes in work, home“, that appears to have run in several hundred newspapers and Web sites over the last few weeks.

The key trend they used in this article was this:

Further adding to a nomadic work force: Many companies will look to hire employees on a contract basis, avoiding the risks and costs of full-time staff, said Jim Carroll, futurist, trends and innovations expert and author of “Ready, Set, Done: How to Innovate When Faster is the New Fast “.

I’m a big believer that one of the key trends going forward is that we are entering the era of the permamently contracted employee. Let’s expand on that thinking a bit: here’s what the AP was originally going to run:

THE TREND: A nomadic workforce. Many people will discover that the “new economy” is going to require them to think differently about their careers, said Carroll, who predicts that people will have four or five different careers throughout their lifetime.

A lot of companies won’t be willing to hire new full-time staff, given that the cost of future severance packages and benefits can be high. But they will hire someone on a contract basis.

“So the secret to success for many people in the year to come will be shifting their mindset from ‘how do I find a job’ to ‘how do I remake myself so I can find a few good contracts,'” he said.


THE IMPACT: More people will position themselves as consultants, he said. They will abandon dead careers and pursue new ones, heading to community colleges for fast hits of knowledge, skills and career training.

This is a trend that I’ve been speaking about over the last fifteen years. This particular recession has caused it to pick up more steam than ever before — even though the recession of 2001-2002 gave it some pretty good momentum.

As more people establish careers based on a constant stream of new contracts, they’ll realize that they’ve become a personal brand. And as they get into the contract game, they’ll learn that they don’t need a resume; they need a Web site that positions their personal brand.

But wait! Personal Brand Web sites are already passe; with the explosion in mobile usage, more and more of the fast-paced organizations that are looking to hire short, sharp shocks of creative staff are likely to be searching for them on their mobile device.

How do you get a leg up in this game?

You develop an App. If you think about it, an App is a simple recognition of the fact that the iPhone Safari browser simply doesn’t work well. Make it easy for the client to find you, and you’re ahead of the game.

That’s what I’ve done with the new Jim Carroll App. I’ve been a nomadic worker for almost twenty years. I like to joke that I work really hard to not have to go and get a job. I seem to have some unique insight, and the ability to deliver that insight in a compelling fashion, such that world class organizations like the Washington Speakers Bureau and Harry Walker Agency introduce me to their clients. I’m a unique brand, and I’m continually working to evolve my brand so that it keeps up with the fast paced future. That includes making my insight and knowledge — the essence of my personal brand — easily accessible to potential clients.

The big question for you as you find yourself living an increasingly nomadic career existence is this: how do you keep your personal brand up to date, relevant, and accessible to your audience?

Welcome to the era that involves the End of the Resume, and the Rise of the Personal Brand App!

For those who have asked, my App was designed by the fine folks at They’ve got an interesting product. Check it out!

Related posts:

  • Article: Crystal ball for 2010 sees changes in work, home
  • Video: The new workforce
  • Blog entry Today’s jobless recovery was predicted in 1987
  • Blog entry Advice for a flat world: take your skills to a global audience
  • Blog entry 10 Unique Characteristics of 21st Century Skills by Jim Carroll
  • Book: The Rise of the Project Workforce
  • iEveryWare

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