The concept of career has traditionally focused on progressing up an established hierarchy within an organization or line of work. In fact, most people still hold this belief. It is a neat and orderly assumption—and not without some truth for many people.
But the times are changing. In January 2016, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported an average 4.2 years employee tenure, a decrease from 2014’s 4.6 years. And for workers aged 25 to 34, it’s significantly lower—2.8 years.
What’s happening? A new generation of workers no longer views a career as a precise, sequential progression from employer to employer. Instead they see it as a series of developmental experiences with each one offering an opportunity to acquire new skills, judgments, and perspectives.
The old model is rapidly fragmenting and no longer describes today’s working world. There are far fewer ladders than there used to be, and those that still exist look far less secure.