Being a professional employer has a weird deal to it. You take the risk, responsibility and social burden of growing a business.
However, this onus of responsibility is increasingly getting questioned where efficiency is proliferating, thus we find the middle class diminishing at a rapid rate. And the largest reason for this squeeze is that those middle class jobs were inefficient in the first place. They were information bottlenecks that a cubicle factory produced and called value.
However, automation is changing the scene in a rapid way. Cloud computing, artificial intelligence, machine language, predictive analysis and infinite computing are right there for any entrepreneur to implement. The overhead of office space, server racks, sales organizations, and yes, white collar labor, is not a requirement to get started.
When you get squeezed by market forces or a crisis, the luxury of labor becomes a scrutinized cost. Business owners and managers have to streamline and get more efficient. And the reality is that they can change things up at any time. But they may have overpaid in business operations until a crisis becomes a scapegoat. They then have the business decision to embracing the reality that jobs can be accomplished more efficiently with technology.
And when the business cycle does come back and turn, is there good reason to add more labor when automation has taken root and filled the gap?
The goal of an entrepreneur is to bring immense value to customers. One tool to make this happen is to add labor towards this end. But when entrepreneurs discover that they can do much more with less because platforms and automation are ubiquitous and cheap, then why would someone want to be inefficient when they have found dramatic low-cost efficiency.
And what about the lot of the employee? Well, they have to figure out how to bring value to others as well. There’s no free ride. There are less places where they can be told what to do and what to think by someone else taking the risk.
Instead, they can find customers and automate as well. It may be scary, but by necessity, this is happening repeatedly by people making that mindset shift. And the fact that it is being done so regularly and en masse takes away the argument of employment as a limited option.
Employment is a means, not an end.
Bringing value and doing it efficiently for a marketplace is why a business exists in the first place.
It’s hard enough driving that value. But getting mixed signals in your head and doing second things first can make the job much harder.
Focus on bringing immense value with efficiency. If it happens to involve employing others, so be it. But your burden is on your customer first as an entrepreneur.