F0ul Thoughts

Mild mannered on the outside, Free thinker on the inside

Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

what is the best recession proof job?

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We are in a bit of a recession, and have been for a few years. The question most people have is, what is the best recession proof job?

The answer is simple – its a job that can’t be replicated by machine. On a similar track is a job that can’t be simplified enough to remove the reason for the job existing.

What jobs are these?

Its not a skills based job. Every skill that is in demand will eventually be commoditized down to a level that will enable it to be available to everyone. Its happened throughout history, and eventually, technology will kill the requirement for the skill in its entirety.

The most difficult skill to commoditize is one that involves communicating with people. The past few years has seen it being tried through the use of auto marketing telesales agents where a recorded message is played at unsuspecting customers – but its not really more useful than to filter potential immediate prospects.

The professional services are another area where people skills are difficult to automate, although its potentially easier, if the use of a flowchart is used. This is demonstrated by the use of No Win No Fee services. Medical services are now being simplified using telemedicine systems.

So, getting back to the question, what is the best recession proof job? The answer is Salesman. Not phone answering, order taking sales job, but the sort of sales job where people are convinced to spend more money on something than they originally intended to spend – because they understand the extra value they will gain on doing so.

Is that something anyone can do?

Hopefully not! 😉

Becoming a great salesperson is all about understanding people and how to convince someone that your idea is worth spending money on doing. Its not about becoming a great liar, or brow beating someone into signing on the dotted line.

If you think you’ve got what it takes, just apply for the next sales job you see in the paper. After a good 5 years experience, you will never need to worry again about being unemployed – ever seen a great sales person not working?

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Written by f0ul

April 23, 2011 at 11:42 pm

Posted in Culture

Why Being Stupid is Best!

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How is your intelligence? Would you consider yourself cleverer than average? Do you think your life is better because of your brain power?

Let me come clean – I have a high IQ. Not quite genius, but damn close! I have what is called a pattern recognition intelligence. I see connections to things before other people do. I watch a TV show, and know who the killer is within 5-10 minutes of an hour show!

So, is that why is it better to be stupid?

No! It’s because decisions are simpler. Only two choices, right for you, or wrong for you?

For instance, take a politically based situation. whatever your position, you will not be aware of ALL the facts. Either you will be aware of the situation and how it effects you, or you will be aware of why a decision was made.

However, what you don’t know is how that decision could effect someone else’s decision on a seemingly unrelated issue.

As an example, People are complaining about the cost of Petrol. What do you do?

If the cost of fuel duty was lowered, people would be happy, but food inflation would go up, rather than down. The reason being that with a lower price, fuel would lead to more cash in the economy, which would lead to more buying of goods. People would then stop being happy.

While foods would become cheaper because there wasn’t as much fuel cost to recover, the increased demand would force the prices up anyway! Then there is the effect of more fuel being sold, because it was cheaper. Very soon, the amount of fuel needed by the refiners would go up, leading to more oil being bought, which would increase the cost of oil – leading to more expensive fuel at the pump!

While the most unhappy people would now campaign for you to lower the duty again – all it would do is to repeat this cycle. The other thing to realise is that people buy fuel whatever it costs – its why there is tax on it in the first place!

The point is that when you are stupid, you either give up thinking of all these extra factors, or you think that there is a way to collect every single factor and monitor it. It comes down to the Chaos theory which basically said that every intervention will have an effect which will become more pronounced as time moves on.

The simplest way to understand that taking a decision to do nothing is as powerful as a decision to do something!

However, when you are stupid, you will decide to do something because you think that doing nothing means not having an effect.

The end result will still not be what you were hoping for, but it will include the effect of other people making decisions based on your decision.

Complex? Not really – but it makes you realise how insignificant you really are in the grand scheme of things. Which is why very clever people tend not to become great leaders. They may well advise great leaders, but to convince people of something, you can’t know the real truth – it will only depress you! 😉

Stupid people use luck, which is the facility where you don’t think too hard. If everything works out well for you – that was your input. If things go wrong, it was bad luck, and beyond your control! Sound familiar? Every politician since the birth of time has used that technique! 😉

Even 1 to 1 relationships are better when you are stupid. There is none of this looking for motives and incentives! People are always looking for what is in it for them. Its how they make decisions. However, this doesn’t mean people are selfish. Only a stupid person would think that! 😉

People will be happy with a decision which makes someone else happy – if having that person happy, makes the first person happy. Self interest packaged as selflessness – or love, or whatever other description makes you happy! 😉

If you are stupid, you don’t think of these things, just about the simple decision to be made – what is in it for me? … and that really is the only question worth asking 😉

Does any of this make sense to you? Anyone agree? Anyone find they think the same way?
Would love to hear from you!

Written by f0ul

March 1, 2011 at 10:23 am

Posted in Culture

Recession Behaviour – what happened LAST time

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Everyone always goes on about recessions and how the sky is falling. Yeah, yeah, yeah – that is what they always said!

However, what is very interesting is how business developments in one recession is carried on in the next recession.

Take the idea of nationalizing the banks, It was done in France during the last recession, and joked about in the UK while the UK car industry was being nationalized.

Another one is retail. During the 90’s the food giants, Tesco, Asda, etc were doing food quite well. They had a market share, but they wanted more. Slowly, they started selling more stuff which wasn’t food. It was slowly at first, but by the end of the last recession, it was well known that you could now buy a TV in Tesco’s.

Roll forward 20 years, and the supermarkets are now doing the same thing to the entire retail industry, that it did to the grocery market during the last recession. Now you can do your entire weekly shop in Tesco – no need to visit any other shop!

The point is, recessions are just booms in reverse. Just like a boom means that everyone stops saving and starts spending, a bust means nobody spends unless there is a way to push your debt out of sight!

Once the last recession ended, the most popular way of buying big ticket items was through 12 months interest free deals. These died off as the boom carried on, and credit cards took over.

I wonder what will appear in this market over the next 18 months? Credit cards with 12 month interest free deals on purchases, maybe?

Written by f0ul

February 25, 2010 at 3:57 pm

Never as Good – Never as Bad – That’s Human Nature!

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There is a very interesting story on Sky News today where they use a scene from one of my favourite films to make a point.

Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey was the sequel to Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, and must be the best film ever made!
It’s the story of two kids who find that a future civilisation has defined them as being idols. To ensure that these kids turn out to be the people this future expects them to be, they send a time machine into the past to ‘help them along’.

Anyway, it’s really funny seeing historical figures in a modern context and the film does make you feel good.  More importantly, it explains subtly that our history is what we make of it – rose tinted glasses etc. So, that ends our long way around to a very short point!
Human nature is always exaggerated.

When things are not good, we think they are really bad, and when things ARE good, we think they are EVEN better than anything EVER!!
So, come the current economic ‘meltdown’, we are NOT rioting in the streets or eating each other’s babies, as was forecast 12 months ago.   But then, neither was everyone living the life of royals in a world made of gold only 3 years ago!

This is how legends are made – good for stories; not much use for doing historical comparisons!
Anyway – next stop huge, unjustifiable, ‘you’ve never had it so good!’, nothing can fail type boom! Probably in around 2024 or so!

p.s. I’m serious about 2024 by the way! Arrange your career around the linked article, and you won’t go far wrong! 😉

Written by f0ul

February 19, 2010 at 9:46 am

Posted in Culture

Tagged with , ,

Maddie: Did the parents do it?

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Having linked through to the book the tried to ban – the Truth in the Lie, yesterday, I have spent hours reading pages of conflicting information about what happened that night in 2007.

What do I think?  Does it really matter?  The facts should really speak for themselves.  However, there is something very interesting in the over view of this whole story.

Firstly, statistically, kids are usually killed by their parents.  84% to be exact.  Only 4% are killed by a stranger to the child.  So, even before anyone had even got in the police car to respond to the call, there was a damn good chance that they knew what had happened.

Secondly, the strange behaviour on the discovery that their child is missing is also very worrying.  No panic at the hotel / apartment area.  Kate McCann walks back to the bar where her friends are and announces that her child is missing using a medical term for death.  Possibly this is perfectly understandable considering that they are all medical staff.  However, not the expected actions of a mother who has just realised that one of her children is missing.

Lots of the extra information which have ended up as part of this story are difficult to accept as evidence as they don’t have collaborating evidence.  Witness statements are a good example of this.  It is when you ask questions of a witness, wait a few days, and ask the same thing again.  The story might change a little, that is human nature.  Its the amount that they change which is where police expertise is required.

The public are very bad at this, and with very little knowledge, but a great deal of passion it is possible to have a conspiracy up and running its way around the world by breakfast.

I don’t might stating that from what I’ve read, I think the baby died in Kate’s arms, having had a fatal accident.  That is just opinion, but it should be enough to ensure I never end up in a jury!! 🙂

What do you think?

Let me know your theory!

Written by f0ul

February 11, 2010 at 11:30 am

Posted in celebrity, Culture, politics

Is the Health and Safety Net Cracking?

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A very interesting report came out today.  It was from Ofsted and was announcing that kids who are not surfing online using a locked down system, are more aware of the dangers.

Surprise, surprise, kids who are aware of the dangers, adapt their behaviour to stay safe!

I would assume that this is also true for adults.  The safer we feel, the more irresponsible we act.  My car with ABS was ‘uncrashable’ and made me drive quicker will fewer safety margins.

If the world works through kids being influenced by teachers, and grow up with their attitudes until they see sense as adults, then maybe we will start seeing other cracks appearing in the health and safety net.

What do you think?

Do you believe in the ever compensating safety margin or is that just a myth created by people who don’t like rules?

Written by f0ul

February 10, 2010 at 5:18 pm