The job market is a market.
I mean a proper one.
The rest is decoration.
Stuff like fulfilling, proud, gym membership, good company, free coffee and fresh fruit, team spirit, happy hours, casual Friday, rewarding, your birthday off, interesting, canteen, deserving, promotion, is just decoration.
The decoration is nice to have, but it’s just marginal, and if you care too much about if you might get distracted from the truth.
Now, you may have heard that we are in a market, and might have seen yourself as the seller, and the employer as the buyer, since they told you that you are selling your skills.
But you aren’t actually selling anything to anyone unless you are a trader selling their own goods or services to a customer.
On the job market, you are neither a seller nor a buyer.
You are the product.
You are to be sold to an employer by a recruiter.
You are nothing more than a human skill container, and the same skills can be potentially performed by a machine or outsourced elsewhere for less.
Ever heard of those Indian IT people who would be stealing the work from us by freelancing remotely for a handful of rice?
If a machine is not available to perform a particular skill yet, employers can choose to buy that skill from traders without employing them. These traders are the ones who actually sell skills.
As an employee, you are a product waiting to belong to a company.
By employing you, a company puts a label on you – which is your role and job title -, they decide on your status, your salary, your daily tasks, dress code and holidays: how do you think they’d be allowed to do all this to you if they weren’t owning you?
If they (are supposed to) care for you, your career development, your training, your parental leaves, your holidays, your pension, it’s just because they have bought you in exchange for a salary.
It’s not fiction that people are bought and sold all the time through mergers and acquisitions, along with companies’ assets and stock products.
But you see, we get so miserable in our effort to get a job because we are trained to think that on the job market we will matter as people, when it is obvious that in ANY market you don’t have any people.
You just have sellers, buyers and products.
If you enter the job market as a job seeker, you’ll be the product on the shelf.
I know, being a product is not as cool as being, for example, a pop-star, but it’s neither good nor bad.
It’s just a fact you have to deal with if you decide to be an employee.