Jonathan Begley

November 27, 2009

Giving Thanks

Filed under: Attitude,Workforce — jonathanbegley @ 8:52 am

Having an attitude of gratitude I believe is one of the most powerful things someone can do when they find themselves down and out for any reason.  It is easy for all of us to focus on the problems, on the negative.  I find myself disregarding the postive things in my life and dwelling on the negative.

Is this just human nature?  I don’t believe so.  I think that this tendency is a learned behavior that affects us more than we realize.  And I also believe that because it is a learned behavior, it is up to each of us to teach ourselves another way of thinking. 

When I dwell on the negative my mind begins to spiral downward.  Things that would normally be annoyances become enormous, life changing events in a matter of hours.  When I remember to think about what I have to be grateful for, no matter how big or small, these life changing events quickly become almost comical.  Why stress about that deadline when it will come and go, met or not, and I will still be me.  Gratitude helps me to live each day to the fullest, keeping what matters most in the forefront of my mind.

Having this kind of attitude not only shows in my actions and relationships, but it is infectuous.  Grateful, positive people are the ones that we all want to have around us.  Showing these postitive traits even when surrounded by challenges says more about a person’s character than a resume or portfolio ever will.

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November 25, 2009

Quick Fix

Filed under: Development — jonathanbegley @ 3:34 pm

The authors of Freakonomics wrote an article last week focused on a recent “trend” that has taken shape in the current economic crisis.  They question if this is possibly the solution to unemployment?  The article claims that a number of white-collar, educated individuals are considering donating organs because of their financial struggles.  They state that $100,000 would go a long way towards financial security, a lot farther than selling old items around the house.  This is quite the “out of the box” thinking.

I realize that this is not a “trend” that most of us would agree with (and if you do please leave a comment below), but I do believe that this “quick fix” attitude is extremely prevalent in our society.  Think about our athletes using performance-enhancing drugs or our parents giving their children medication at the first sign of behavioral problems.  Think about our government creating $787 billion to bail out businesses that were run poorly and who should be left on their own to fail.  We want things here and we want things now.  We want our lives as easy and painless as possible.  And we don’t consider the future consequences of our actions.

Our nation and economy did not get into this present situation quickly.  For close to a decade people bought homes they had no business buying, thinking that in a few months they could sell that same home for a huge profit.  Banks loaned money to anyone, regardless of income or credit history, just to put a few extra dollars in their pockets.  Many Americans were making unrealistic wages in an economy that could just not sustain itself.  Now many of these same Americans are struggling to find work.  The work that is available does not pay the wages necessary to sustain their previous lifestyle.  People’s lives are changing and it hurts, but this is the natural consequence of living outside of our means.

It has been widely reported that we are out of the recession, but that this recovery may very well be a “jobless recovery” for the next two or three years.  We need to be prepared to experience pain and struggle.  We need to work hard and to learn all we can from our experiences.  Most of all, we cannot expect to have a “quick fix” of any kind, whether from the federal government or from the sale of vital organs.  The good jobs in our economy’s future will not go to those individuals who made the most money before and who think that they are entitled to certain wages and conditions now.  The good jobs will go to those people who work hard, who learn all they can and who invest in themselves, even when times are tough.

November 17, 2009

What This is All About

Filed under: Uncategorized — jonathanbegley @ 3:18 pm

Hello world and thanks for reading.   I am excited about this new venture in my life and look forward to new experiences and relationships in the world of blogging.  I have given a lot of thought over the last several weeks to why I want to write a blog, and what I want my blog to be. 

More than anything else, blogging to me is the way for me to let the world know about who I am, what I do, and what I believe.  It is a method for me to examine the world I live in.  Too many of us are out living our lives, complaining about what we see around us, and not doing anything to make a difference.  I want to add value to this world; to give rather than take.

So what you ask will I be blogging about?  Well I intend to blog about what I believe to be a very critical topic, workforce.  I believe that a region’s workforce is a key element to any successful economy.  I also believe that a strong workforce with enhanced skills will create a more positive community capable of supporting our children and families in the twenty-first century.

With the unemployment rate above 10%, higher than at any time in the last quarter century, I plan to write extensively about ways individuals can identify their strengths and weaknesses.  Knowing what to do with this information can enable us to meet the challenges of these times with confidence.  

As a government employee I bring a unique prospective.  I see regularly the effort our government is making to improve the lives of Americans, and I see the time wasted in needless bureaucratic formalities.  I meet with businesses regularly and know where they are going and most importantly, who they need to get there.

November 16, 2009

The Importance of Quality Education

Filed under: Uncategorized — jonathanbegley @ 12:43 pm

A quality educational system is the absolute foundation of any strong, diverse, and successful economy.  Workforce is a key factor in any business decision, especially one involving relocation.  Who would possibly want to move their business, their source of prosperity to an area that can’t support it with the necessary knowledge and skills to manuever through the fast paced world which we live in. 

Here in Nevada one of the main incentives that economic development professionals use to attract business is the business friendly tax structure.  The numbers look good, there is no doubt.  But, will this incentive be enough to bring highly successful businesses to the state who can make Nevada competitive worldwide?  There are many factors that influence these major business decisions.  I believe that the most important factor is that of quality education.  What good are tax incentives if a business can not find the quality workforce with the skills and knowledge to remain competitive in highly skilled markets?

Nevada was one of the first states into this recession, and I believe will be one of the last, if not the last state out of the recession.  In order for this state to succeed, we must focus on the youth that are here and not worry so much about bringing people from California.  We should cease teaching our students for the tests, and teach them how to think critically, make decisions, and to be leaders for this nation.  Our school system is poor at best.  I know that we have quality teachers who get results from their students.  We should be rewarding this effort, encouraging all teachers to go above and beyond for our children.  But, I also believe that we should be careful not to only measure success by test scores.  Success in the future will be made by those young people who can embrace the power of today’s technology while also enhancing our father’s work ethic and perseverance.

November 11, 2009

Welcome to my Blog

Filed under: Uncategorized — jonathanbegley @ 7:46 pm

The economy is in a terrible condition and everyone knows it.  It is easy to point fingers at who caused the collapse and it’s even easier to point out those who are greedy and abusing their positions.  Greed is nothing new to the world and it has caused countless recessions in the past.  Some people rise and fall with the stock market and others choose to make their own way.

This blog will explore the many ways that an individual can invest in themselves to find success in many different areas of life.  The post-stimulus world belongs to those who can embrace the changes in their lives.

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