Interesting reads about distruption in our working lives

Age old restaurant in NYC, now closed.

In March, we started an ongoing conversation about coping with regular sharing sessions online and with Edgeryders sending a ‘postcard’ message from their personal lives. It’s been enriching at so many levels. I’d like to add to our stories so far some heartfelt testimonials from outside of the community:

  • read in the NY Times: The owner of this restaurant in NYC abruptly closed their business during a week of swirling news, supplier invoices, calls and cancellations, and heartfelt proofs of solidarity.
    I have to hope that we matter in some other alternative economy; that we are still a thread in the fabric that might unravel if you yanked us from the weave […] I, like hundreds of other chefs across the city and thousands around the country, are now staring down the question of what our restaurants, our careers, our lives, might look like if we can even get them back. I don’t know whom to follow or what to think. Everyone says: “You should do to-go! You should sell gift cards! You should offer delivery! You need a social media presence! You should pivot to groceries! You should raise your prices […] If this kind of place is not relevant to society, then it — we — should become extinct. (source)

  • read on reddit:
    I’m a housekeeper in Maine. I found out Thursday that I am being laid off indefinitely. Thursday I had a job, Friday I didn’t. In one week, I lost both of my jobs (I worked at my University, and a hotel), had to move out of my apartment (can’t pay my $800 rent, landlord not helping), and had to switch to online learning as a MUSIC major (no way in hell will that work).
    It’s 4:58 in the morning. I woke up from a nightmare, and woke up in a nightmare.
    EDIT because a couple people decided they should attempt to “save me” from a music major… I’m a music education major. Please mind your business, I’m not looking for career advice. :sleepy:

    As a business owner myself, I feel like it’s worth mentioning that even the most well-intentioned and seemingly well-prepared of us who want to do all those things may not necessarily be able to. We kept money in the bank that would keep us safe for around a 12-14 months if we had a sustained and unforeseen 20-30% drop in demand (maybe a drastic reshuffling of Google rankings or something) and needed some time to adjust. However, at least for us, we had 90% of our business disappear overnight due to this. (source)

  • from close friends: I am lucky to keep my job, we are working remotely in the [IT] company and we keep having the daily Scrum meetings and reports from across the teams. My heart jumped when one of the senior leads initiated on Slack a tiny bit of conversation that was more personal, about how we are actually doing and if we feel productive enough in this new rhythm. I realise there are things we never talk about with the teams because it’s always delivery, delivery, delivery, but a personal check in, even a drop in the ocean, felt really human. Maybe it’s these days when everyone is more sensible and if you’re living alone like me, every bit matters. It’s not exactly loss of work, but it’s a loss that is very connected to our working lives

Advice about productivity

I’m even getting to the point that I feel that I’m neglecting my dog because I am not finding new things for him to do now that I am around 24/7. (comment here)

There is a plethora or articles dealing with self-management, self-optimisation and how we are prisoners of the always-on work culture. Here is a piece of compelling advice:

Typically, you work for the promise of something better — a promotion, a raise, a future that’s more promising than the present. But with all of that in terrifying jeopardy, the demands are much lower. It is just enough to get by, if that’s all you’re capable of, since “getting by” may be the new emotional normal for months to come. (If you’re one of the superhumans responding to contemporary conditions by suddenly maximizing your productivity and turning into Jon Taffer on steroids, good for you, but please leave the rest of us alone.) The knowledge that you have no control over your own fate is a shitty feeling, one that is more acute than usual, and you’d be forgiven if you took the space to process it all, however that processing might manifest itself. (source)

Where are you nowadays?

  • Does one of the stories reasonate with your own? Does it make you feel understood, hopeful, sad?
  • Would you like to join a session to share more of your experience and of others you know? We are preparing for an Online Summit on Resilient Livelihoods. Read more about it here.
  • Leave a reply below and #staysafe :slight_smile: