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Old 04-09-2013, 04:02 PM   #181
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Privately held companies run the gamut. Some are really good to work for. Some are awful to work for. But the thing is, when you are a privately held company, if the owner wants to take care of his/her employees, they can without Wall Street and its major shareholders screaming bloody murder for leaving profits on the table.

Executives of public companies have no such real power. Shareholders will oust them if they don't screw their employees because the market will allow it. The real point, IMO, is that NO public company can come close to being as generous and considerate to their workforce as SOME private companies are. Wall Street won't allow it.

(Also, these private companies can do crazy things like manage and invest for the LONG run, not just what makes the next quarter look better at the possible expense of long-term growth prospects of the company.)
Perhaps I've worked for the wrong privately held company and you've worked for the wrong public company. Again, just sharing my experience. My megacorp was WAY more generous across the board, 4:1 401k match up to 8%, pension plan, better health care, more holidays, better work schedule, less micromanaging etc.
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:11 PM   #182
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what a relief! My gen Y #2 son (age 23) just got a job as a data analyst in Raleigh, NC. Way lower cost of living than here in the bay area where he grew up.
He tried to get into PhD school in English (each school only admits a handful of students that they can support) but didn't make it. He has been tutoring for a couple of years after his BA.
I'm just glad he finally has that first real job to go on his resume.
The news today says that posted job openings are increasing. Hope it helps more of the liberal arts majors who have graduated in the past few years.
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:23 PM   #183
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My dad (greatest generation) is beyond perplexed and asks "where's their thermoses?" I've never seen him buy a cup of coffee to go, EVER.
This gave me a big smile, because it reminded me of my late father and all the thermoses my late mom filled for him in the early hours of every work day. Thanks! It is a nice memory you prompted here.
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:44 PM   #184
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what a relief! My gen Y #2 son (age 23) just got a job as a data analyst in Raleigh, NC. Way lower cost of living than here in the bay area where he grew up.
He tried to get into PhD school in English (each school only admits a handful of students that they can support) but didn't make it. He has been tutoring for a couple of years after his BA.
I'm just glad he finally has that first real job to go on his resume.
The news today says that posted job openings are increasing. Hope it helps more of the liberal arts majors who have graduated in the past few years.
Next to Raleigh is Cary. Home of the frequently cited #1 company to work for: SAS. A private company. (OK, this year they dropped to #2 on the Fortune list.)

I don't work there, but people who do love it. They check in and never want to check out.
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:52 PM   #185
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Next to Raleigh is Cary. Home of the frequently cited #1 company to work for: SAS. A private company. (OK, this year they dropped to #2 on the Fortune list.)
Cary is near Raleigh. They make up two points of the 'Research Triangle'. Don't make the mistake thinking you can get standard North Carolina lower cost of living right in Cary, though...housing there is quite a bit higher there.
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Old 04-09-2013, 05:08 PM   #186
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I've said this before here on the forum, but it is so interesting to hear from people who work for large employers. I've never worked anywhere that had more than 30 people, and usually more like 5-10 in one place. Such a completely different experience. I just couldn't cut it anywhere that had an an employee handbook...and rules...and a dress code (like Brewer's peep toe shoe brouhaha--I can't even fathom that).
On the other side of the ledger, I was the cause of the imposition of a dress code at one place I worked. Small, informal shop which told me they had no dress code, so I took them at their word. I worked long hours and had a brutal commute, so I just threw on whatever was (more or less) clean. Apparently the last straw was the day I came in with a pair of very well used shorts and a stained T shirt that had a picture of fly fishing gear and "The Way To A Fisherman's Heart Is Through His Fly" on it. The next week we had a business casual dress code.
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Old 04-09-2013, 05:54 PM   #187
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Next to Raleigh is Cary. Home of the frequently cited #1 company to work for: SAS. A private company. (OK, this year they dropped to #2 on the Fortune list.)

I don't work there, but people who do love it. They check in and never want to check out.
Thanks Joe, he actually lives in Cary (Concentrated Area of Relocated Yankees). The rent for a beautiful apartment there is half what he paid for a basement apartment in Boston.
Ah, SAS. Used SAS 77 to do the multivariate analyses on my doctoral dissertation when dinosaurs roamed the earth.
He would love to work for them--hoping this first analyst job will give him the experience to move on to more fun companies.
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Old 04-09-2013, 06:23 PM   #188
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Just midland texas.
Actually Midland Odessa is not a small town makeing up a total of 274k in people, meaning a lot of shopping is there. It has a good airport, although one time I flew there and had to wait an hour for the cab to return to take me to the hotel (this was during one of the busts in the oil patch) and I suspect it was about the only cab in town. Yes its flat as all get out, but the surroundings would be good for solar energy as well as wind, since there is no scenery to spoil. For wind at least the cattle won't care.
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:06 PM   #189
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I have 2 Generation Y kids and they are both fully employed in their respective professions and are both doing very well. Same with friends' kids of the same age. I guess we are just lucky.
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:30 PM   #190
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I have not been a real student of generational terminology. Being born in 1964, however, I knew I was at the very butt end of the "baby boomers". I never felt that was applicable to me especially since my father wasn't even a teenager yet at wars end. So I think I will change and become Gen X now that you have given me the 1961-81 window.
I was born in 1958, 1 year after Sputnik was launched.
I distinctly recall my generation being referred to as the "Space Age" generation, distinctive from the Baby Boomers and what is now called Gen X.
So I am going to hang into the "Space Age Baby" moniker.

I grew up as a young child in the Go-Go 60s, and was a teenager in the 1970s when the Womens' Liberation Movement was in full swing. Young girls were being actively encouraged to enter non-traditional careers (now referred to as STEM).
The Space Race and Cold War were huge factors in the advances in technology and generous funding of R&D. It was a no brainer to set my goal to become a techie.
So I majored in Physics, using a full tuition scholarship, College W*rk Study, lots of federal FA based on merit, and summer jobs as a mechanic. I went on to study Computer Science after graduation because there were no j*bs for a fresh graduate with a BS Physics where I chose to live. I chose CS classes based on what the want ads asked for.
I eventually was able to take graduate courses in Engineering. I never completed the MSEE degree but had tons of practical experience from w*rk. I read a lot of manuals and took every training opportunity that crossed my path.

My point is whatever you do, you must be flexible and willing to continue education in the form of taking individual classes (on site or online) if that is what the j*b market dictates. You must have a Plan B, and a Plan C, etc etc.

My personal message to young people (under 18) today is...

Every race is won with the first step...sitting in the basement at the 'rents playing video games non-stop just ain't gonna cut it.
Jump on every opportunity to learn something.
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:26 PM   #191
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I have a couple of problems with what you said. First, a college kid isn't likely to get a part time job paying $15/hr. More like $8-10/hr- if they can find a job. I've been looking for a job for 18 months in the $10-12/hr range or higher with no luck and I have over a decade of work experience. So the college kid would have to work pretty much fulltime to make the money your saying is needed. Some of the really smart people might be able to pull off fulltime work and a full college course schedule at the same time but many can't. I worked very hard to get a C+ average in highschool and barely made it into college. I didn't work in college and I still had to drop out due to poor grades. If I tried working 30+ hours/wk I would've actually failed many/most classes. Not everyone is able to do what you're suggesting.
I attended the University of Iowa, which provides a site for on & off-campus jobs. The pay ranges from $8/hr to over $20/hr. The median seems closer to $10-11, but there are several jobs that pay more than that. Pizza delivery, waitressing, and bartending will also pay around that amount.

I sincerely apologize that you weren't able to find a job and struggled with your grades.

I do still believe that with 168 hours in a week, giving folks 56 hours for sleep, 20 hours for work, 15 hours a week for class, 45 hours a week for homework, and 10 hours for general commuting/errands/etc, that leaves 22 hours leftover for whatever. I think the 45 hours is on the high end of homework.

Not everyone's situation is the same, and there are always outliers on each end, but (anecdotally) there were plenty of my peers who spent Thursday-Saturday drinking each night, but kept telling me how busy they were. Really? You had plenty of time to drink. You also had plenty of money from your parents.

You may not fall into that category, but many of my peers (and my brothers) did.
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Old 04-10-2013, 06:15 AM   #192
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Not everyone's situation is the same, and there are always outliers on each end, but (anecdotally) there were plenty of my peers who spent Thursday-Saturday drinking each night, but kept telling me how busy they were. Really? You had plenty of time to drink. You also had plenty of money from your parents.
Sure, 22 hours to drink and socialize, but then you have to factor in the hangover recovery time. That makes someone really busy.

Hey, I had fun in college. But if you want to get a degree in engineering at a high level university, it is a ton of work. I had to forget Thursday night parties, and even many Fridays.

After I started working, I had friends in other professions mad at me for what I made. These typically were the Thursday through Sunday party people. Correlation?
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Old 04-10-2013, 09:38 AM   #193
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I don't really buy this.

Ultimately, shareholders hold little real power to affect a company. The vast majority of stock is held by large institutions like mutual fund companies/retirement funds that rarely do anything but rubber stamp what management does. The dissident shareholders are rare enough that they make the news.

I think the real issue is that management is generally compensated in stock options, and that makes the short term opinion of Wall Street their overwhelming concern. Most management teams are thinking very short term, because their compensation plans are all about the next quarterly numbers. They aren't worried about the long term because they probably won't be there five years from now.

There are well-run public companies that treat there employees well, regardless of what Wall Street thinks. Costco is a prime example. Long-term management tenure and compensation plans that aren't tied to the Wall Street roulette wheel are a good starting point for finding some of these companies.



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Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post
Privately held companies run the gamut. Some are really good to work for. Some are awful to work for. But the thing is, when you are a privately held company, if the owner wants to take care of his/her employees, they can without Wall Street and its major shareholders screaming bloody murder for leaving profits on the table.

Executives of public companies have no such real power. Shareholders will oust them if they don't screw their employees because the market will allow it. The real point, IMO, is that NO public company can come close to being as generous and considerate to their workforce as SOME private companies are. Wall Street won't allow it.

(Also, these private companies can do crazy things like manage and invest for the LONG run, not just what makes the next quarter look better at the possible expense of long-term growth prospects of the company.)
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:24 PM   #194
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I don't really buy this.

Ultimately, shareholders hold little real power to affect a company. The vast majority of stock is held by large institutions like mutual fund companies/retirement funds that rarely do anything but rubber stamp what management does. The dissident shareholders are rare enough that they make the news.
It is the very large shareholders like these fund companies and pension funds that I am talking about.

And you may think they are rubber stamps -- but if the management said "business is so good that we are going to pay our employees 20% above market and we'll still post record earnings", do you think they would be a rubber stamp? I'd say they are a rubber stamp because the management knows what the institutional shareholders want them to do -- take advantage of a terrible job market to give your workers a worse deal, no matter how profitable you'd be otherwise.
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Old 04-10-2013, 09:57 PM   #195
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How old are you, if you don't mind me asking?
I am 36 - firmly in the Gen X crowd
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If you were raised in the 1950s and 60s, yeah, you could have saved for retirement and still take advantage of the ubiquitous pensions that were still out there with a high school diploma for example.
I don't have a private pension
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Anyone born in the 1980s and 1990s and are in their 20s and 30s now won't ever get to retire early or as easy as those born before 1960 without a college degree. Try getting a job (I.e. non-plumbing) today that pays $50k plus without a degree. The cost of living, stagnant wages, pending inflation, and lack of jobs will doom these Millennials and Internet gen without a degree. Not everyone wants to be a plumber making 200k. Besides, that would be a bubble if everyone wanted to be a plumber. Look at nursing, the minimum is pretty much a 4 year degree and those graduates are having a hard time getting a job.
I am not a tradesman. I work in the hospitality industry. I have 4 peers that work in my area.. only one (out of the five of us) has a college degree and we are all within 5 years of age. We all average low six figures. We all share one trait - work ethic.
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Old 04-10-2013, 10:04 PM   #196
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I think the problem is that you are already established.... not someone just starting out today...

...So I think that how you got to where you are might not be available to the kids today...
Any motivated individual (with common sense and the willingness to work hard) could fill my shoes
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BTW, I do have a BIL who makes a LOT more than I do (in the 170s) and does not have a college degree... he is in the oil field with some specialty... he is in his mid 30s now... but he got help along the way from a relative.... but once he got his skill, he was on his way...
I will not deny that who you know can play a role in the many facets of life.

FULL DISCLOSURE: I am not related to anyone at my place of employment. But I did develop relationships to help me get where I am today. (No... I didn't sleep with anyone)
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Old 04-10-2013, 10:48 PM   #197
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My point is whatever you do, you must be flexible and willing to continue education in the form of taking individual classes (on site or online) if that is what the j*b market dictates. You must have a Plan B, and a Plan C, etc etc.
This is a lot easier for younger people (who are after all the subject of this thread) than older.

Obviously I'm generalizing and there are exceptions, but often when one gets into the second decade or so of employment the idea of continually having to learn new ways of working can become less and less appealing. Not to say that middle-aged people are unwilling to learn new skills, but doing so merely to benefit an employer rather than advance one's own interests (e.g., spiritual, recreational, etc.) eventually grows tiresome.
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Old 04-10-2013, 11:00 PM   #198
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And you may think they are rubber stamps -- but if the management said "business is so good that we are going to pay our employees 20% above market and we'll still post record earnings", do you think they would be a rubber stamp? I'd say they are a rubber stamp because the management knows what the institutional shareholders want them to do -- take advantage of a terrible job market to give your workers a worse deal, no matter how profitable you'd be otherwise.
I'm somewhat ambivalent about this. I don't like the trend of increasing income inequality. But at the same time, I don't want companies that I invest in to pay higher than market rates for salaries.
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Old 04-10-2013, 11:59 PM   #199
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I consider myself lucky. Not to sound too optimistic , but my mega corp will be in the Bay Area long after I'm dead or that of my grand children. I'm pretty sure my pension will be safe. Knock on ply wood.
+1

I was fortunate to have been hired by my megacorp just as the IT revolution started. Being in a megacorp during an industry growth phase, and having skills that directly supported that growth, made a big difference. It gave me a desired balance of independence and security (which I never took for granted, one reason I'm in a good FIRE position). It just depends on what you desire. One of my brothers is also like me and worked at 2 megacorps before retiring. Two other brothers are more comfortable running their own small businesses.
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Old 04-11-2013, 05:58 AM   #200
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I can agree with that. I think as a general rule one if one is going to attend college it should be with a specific purpose leading to a definable skill that will result into an employable situation. My DD is determined not to follow that path. She is determined to get a degree in some type of art field. This is only my opinion, but I see this as a waste of time. At least she will not be in debt when she graduates, but I have told her that she will have to pay out of her own pocket the training it will take to learn her "barista skills" to be employed at Starbucks while her degree skills earn her nothing. I can't get her to understand how expensive life will be just to live a "simple middle class lifestyle". Her economic future concerns me, but it is her life....
Totally agree. I always tell people to get an "ing" degree. Engineering, nursing...etc. When you have an "ing" degree you can open the paper and look for a job. When you have an "ology" degree (anthropology, sociology) its a bit less defined.
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