Last week a section of media reported what would have been big news but was not. KCB sheds jobs again, blames it on rates cap, read caption on Saturday Nation.
It was not a big issue because we are now used to news of job losses. We are in a regime of cost-cutting, downsizing, retrenchment and freeze on employment whose consequence is devastating job losses.
Losing a job is one of the most stressful and horrific nightmares. Like death it often comes at the unexpected time or in the words of the poet, when life is sweetest.
Loss of jobs comes in many forms but the most common is layoff, company closure and forced retirement. It leaves the affected confused, angry, hurt, depressed, scared and unsure of what the future holds.
It may affect loss of self-esteem and lead to apathy and hopelessness and therefore makes it hard to even get another job.
Job loss has become so rampant in Kenya that a day hardly passes without an organisation somewhere sending people home.
This is not only a Kenya problem. In fact, it is global phenomenon and the situation is not likely to change soon.
Mostly the culprits are business unfriendly policies such as rates capping and technology. Since technology is one of the fastest growing waves today, it is insane to think things will change.
The average product shelf-lifespan has dramatically reduced due to technological advancement. In the next few years most of the products in the market will be obsolete or will be produced, delivered and consumed totally different from the way we know today.
The loss of jobs in the banking industry is not a reflection of shrinking industry.
Today banks are serving more people, offering more services, with few employees. Today your bank is on your phone. Technology has created a 24-hour branch-less banking accessible from virtually everywhere in the world.
Most companies are either embracing technology or outsourcing most services or a combination of both rather than maintain a large work force.
This means other than losing jobs for those already employed, it is increasingly becoming hard to get find one for the unemployed.
To survive in today’s world you have to think business and acquire business skills whether you are employed or not. There is nothing like job security.
Your security is your ability to deliver services that someone needs and is willing to pay at a cost that makes sense to you.