The Artful Dodger wrote:I'm talking about any kind of business and business owner. From the Mom and Pop stores to the high growth startup on the brink of world domination.
There's still a good deal of risk in opening a dance studio. Everything from location, local market, local size, pricing, staffing, etc. A lot of small businesses fail because they don't get all/any of those factors right. Sure, there's plenty of small businesses that enjoy success, like the dance studio owner. There are plenty others that enjoy modest success, there are plenty who do enough to make ends meet, and plenty who just fail too. You're also not accounting for those people for whatever reason couldn't lift their business off the ground.
From my experience, for every 10 people:
1 becomes a rave success (well exceeded expectations)
3 enjoy modest success (meeting expectation or doing a modest bit better than expectation)
3 are doing enough to make ends meet
3 flat out fail
This is something I can't quantify off the top of my head, but from what I've observed from say, restaurants to startups, this tends to be how I'd perceive the rate of success and failure. That's a conservative outlook, perhaps, but it's one I'm more likely to subscribe to. That's just me, however.
My point still holds true. The self-made non-college graduate story is hard to find. Oh, they're most definitely around, but in the numbers you think them to be, I doubt it. Not everyone has the opportunities, skills, and upside to make it on their own with their own business. College tends to be the main source for a lot of people to find those things.
According to your numbers above, 3 out of 10 fail. That isn't the majority, which is exactly what I have been saying. My own personal experience with family/friends opening businesses is better than 10/1 on success vs. failure, so maybe I'm slightly above the norm, but even you just admitted the majority don't fail which is the opposite of what you've been saying. Either someone can open a business and make enough to pay their bills (success) or the can't (failure). 3 out of 10 may be a lot of people, but it isn't the majority, not by a long shot.
Sure, there are people out there who aren't able to open their own business, simply because they lack common sense (some simply never have the funds, but since the business was never existed, they can't be on the success/fail tally). I know someone who was so dumb that they failed at opening a bar.
How the heck do you fail at that? Booze sells itself, it takes very little skill to run a successful bar, it takes a whole lot more skill to fail at it.
To be serious, they failed because the location stunk and they were way too tight fisted with money (underfunded a bit). Lost a fortune in that failed endeavor because it didn't have 1 single profitable month in the couple of years it was open.
Nothing ever withstands the test of time, eventually. That said, I do think some people are exaggerating the lifespan of Facebook/Twitter being cut short later. Many high-growth startups have a 4-5 year lifespan at best, but the likes of Facebook and Twitter are on the cusp of building something lasting like Amazon and eBay, both of whom thriving remnants of the dot-com crash. Facebook and Twitter might one day go the Yahoo route of too much structure and bureaucracy too fast, but that won't be enough for it to fade away eventually (Yahoo certainly hasn't).
We'll see, but I see Twitter going away a lot faster than you do. Facebook is a lot more solid right now, in fact I'd say they are still moving forward. I can't say that about Twitter.
I'm sure you don't. I'm just saying it's human nature to remember the articles that support their views (and discard others). It's called a confirmation or affirmation bias.
I happen to remember when articles disagree with me as well, when those start adding up, it is time to re-evaluate my position to see if maybe things have changed.
I do understand what you are saying though, it's like Texas Hold 'Em. People always remember when their aces get cracked, but they easily forget how often their aces hold up. I can assure you that isn't the case with me (be it poker or articles). The ones I easily forget are the non-committal boring pieces.
It sure sounds like you do, especially keeping in mind some of your negative personal feelings about college. You've also said that people can learn the same skills they can going straight to the working world than in college. That infers an opinion that college isn't worth it in the end, or that it has marginal payoff.
I don't think anyone is debating a college degree is overvalued. Where we differ is I'm saying that college is still a standard for most employers. Coupled with the experiential aspect of college, a college education still carries value, a lot of value. It's only that there's less value in a college degree because there are more equally talented college grads entering the workforce than in years past, with little to differentiate between them.
Yes, the payoff of a college degree is marginal in my eyes. Here's another way of looking at it. Let's say you won a radio contest, the prize was a certificate for dinner at McDonalds, and the certificate never arrived. Hey, it's a free dinner, so there is value there, but is it worth the effort to try to get the certificate mailed again? That's what I'm saying. College has value, but is it really worth 4 years of your life? In my case, the payoff isn't/wasn't worth it, and I believe that is the case for most people, but they just don't realize it.
The monetary and hidden costs of hiring and training could be chickenfeed for bigger companies, but to small and medium sized numbers, it's more substantial.
For example, in my finance days, my company sought to hire another financial analyst and a CFO candidate to take over for my former boss (this was a startup, and a small department). We went six months having to pay recruiting firms (we didn't have an HR department) to actively push us candidates. When they sent over three candidates that met our screening process, they wound up being quite inferior during the interviewing stage despite their experience on paper. It would have been a much bigger cost to then hire one candidate and eventually to let him go (severance) and push the ante for another candidate. We quit the process altogether and hired financial consultants to help out with the legwork.
I can see how that would cost your company some money, but I've never worked anywhere where we paid a recruiting firm to send us candidates. Everyone I've ever dealt with was happy to send us candidates. They earn commission if we hire their person (or people), so they bend over backwards to try to earn money.
Severance is true and something I don't generally take into consideration. My bad.
It depends on the field, the company, and location. I tend to think people in California are more aware of the prices on their heads, in general, and they'll push for raises/promotions when they realize how much they're worth to the company after completing a few important projects. Also, software engineers here and in the Bay Area have their share of options, to the point employers have to be too careful about underpaying them.
Texas was #1 in job growth last year according to an article I read on Yahoo's front page last week, so people here know they have options when it comes to jobs. Most just don't want to switch to a new job, so they remain underpaid.
Where I live, that just isn't the case.
As far as studying poetry when your major is electrical engineering, again, you're missing the point of college education entirely.
That's another reason why Texas is best. We don't need no stinkin' laddy daddie fancy schmancy name on a piece of paper, we simply need people that can do their job.
Wouldn't requiring someone to take a poetry class when their major is electrical engineering be "broadening one's horizons", which is a mantra of some colleges? Hey, I get it, you want to add all of this "intangible" stuff to college and that's cool. But Jeter's dreamy eyes have had no effect on his performance on the field.
The Artful Dodger wrote:
I have only glossed over this, but here's the problem I have with the article and the study. There will be some degree holders who will earn a great deal more than fellow new grads and high school grads. I'm talking management consultants, investment bankers, engineers, scientists, and essentially any entry-level position that's considered the cream of the crop. At the bottom end, take those college grads who find short-term work (let's say, waiting tables and bartending) just while they're looking for and interviewing for the positions they want to get eventually. Within five years time, there's a good chance those who eventually find a desirable white-collar job are likely to make more than their high school grad counterparts. Needless to say, those who started at the cream of the crop positions are likely to make more, hold higher positions, or even go back for their postgraduate degree and make more. Student loans are an issue, of course, in a person's net income, but they can be paid for often times, in affordable consolidated installments. As long as they didn't take out way too much debt, the trouble of paying those loans off is exaggerated.
Not to mention, this article conveniently overlooks the other positive effects of a college education. Confirmation bias, much?
True, the cream of the crop of college student will do quite well. On the overall though, the gap is quite small. That's what we (or at least I) have been discussing. I'm talking about the normal, typical college student. If we only wanted to talk about the elite 2%, there would be no discussion. Heck, why not just talk about the #1 student, I mean that person is capable of absolutely anything (seriously). But why talk about that 1 person? Would be pointless. So I'm discussing that for the typical college student, a degree isn't worth anything close to what they think it will be worth.
Yeah, the article overlooks the "intangibles", such horrible writers.
Yes doctor, I am sick.
Sick of those who are spineless.
Sick of those who feel self-entitled.
Sick of those who are hypocrites.
Yes doctor, an army is forming.
Yes doctor, there will be a war.
Yes doctor, there will be blood.....