Sunday, January 01, 2012

Today's "cable guy" -- a paradigm for the future job market?

First, I wanted to notice that the record of companies I worked for over the years for customer service, at least internally, was outstanding – that being so even given some occasional performance problems.
As a user in “retirement” I’m not finding that all companies have the infrastructure to deliver that kind of customer service at least to home users.
But the job market is certainly tending to place much more emphasis on skills appropriate for visiting customers at home. That varies from Geek Squad “black tie agents” to “cable guys” – who now have to be geeks who troubleshoot as well as people who can climb poles.

Conversely, the emphasis on “home work” could change the nature of much of the job market to something that stresses physical capabilities (like climbing) too.  Did you ever want to have to pay your dues by repairing storm damage on poles?  Wonder what it is like to be a utility worker?
The New York Times on Jan. 1 has a relevant article, “Today’s Cable Guy: Upgraded and Better Dressed”, by Amy Chozick, link here).  Today’s home users are demanding much more infrastructure, and cable companies may also be selling home security soon.
Around 2002, I recall, after my own layoff, that Time Warner Cable had jobs “selling” cable service in new real estate developments (in Minnesota, then), claiming possible earnings of $75000 a year. And it was door-to-door. 

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