A few decades ago there was an implicit contract between employees and the organizations they worked for. As an employee, you would be loyal and committed to the organization you worked for – giving it your labor and your attention. In exchange that organization would take care of you for life. In fact, working at an organization for 20, 30, or over 40 years was really not that uncommon. Then, once you would leave that organization you would get a pension. Some of these long-term employees still exist but they are a rare dying breed on the verge or retirement (or have reached a point where they too now need to switch jobs). Contrast that with people like my 22 year brother who doesn’t even know what a pension is, and neither to most other people his age.
Long term or life-time employment as we know it today is completely, utterly, and unequivocally, 120% dead, and it ain’t coming back…ever.
The latest numbers from the bureau of labor statistics show that the average tenure was 4.6 years based on data released in January 2012. For workers over 65 the average tenure was 10.3 years and for workers between 25-34 the average tenure was 3.2 years. If you combine this data with the fact that large organizations are more rapidly getting replaced by other incumbents, then you have a bit of an “interesting” situation.