DOASKDOTELL BOOK REVIEWs of Bob Weinstein’s I’ll Work for Free; Tory Johnson's Will Work From Home


Author (or Editor):  Weinstein, Bob

Title:  I’ll Work for Free: A Short-Term Strategy for Long-Term Payoff

Fiction? N

Publisher:  Henry Holt

Date:  1994

ISBN:  0-8050-2883-8

Series Name:

Physical description: paper

Relevance to HPPUB: “fair workplace”


Book Review: I'll Work for Free: A Short -Term Strategy for Long-Term Payoff

Bob Weinstein

New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1994

ISBN 0-8050-2883-8 paper 234 pgs.

This book reflects the personal comeuppance many salaried professionals feel during periodic recessions, most recently during the wave of mergers and corporate downsizings at the end of the 1980's. In my own field, information systems, it got to the point that even mainframe programmers were getting laid off and not finding good jobs. Of course, this turned around (it had started even before this book was published) for two reasons: (1) Y2K created a lot of at least short term jobs in the mainframe area, and (2) the government (the National Science Foundation) allowed the Internet to be used by private industry, which led to an explosion of technical jobs in open systems, drawing away IS professionals (those mentally agile enough to learn a kind of technology that requires retention of a lot of processes with little repetition) from the mainframe. Will these problems come back after Y2K has passed as a non-event? That's a dirty little secret.

Of course, switching to a more entrepreneurial career has many psychological benefits, namely personal freedom and self-ownership. My authoring my own book and web site started as "work for free." It can have a positive motivation.

But some people may find themselves having to invest their own resources (say in training) just to tread water and stay in the job market at all. And some entreprenurial "careers" (say a doughnut shop) require a lot of grunt work. Weinstein may not always be clear about this. Should everyone "buy his job?"

He gives some interesting templates, such as a cover letter on p. 157 offering to effectively volunteer as a programmer to show what an applicant can do. Believe me, the language "I've dreamed of becoming a porgrammer.." in this example sounds a bit corny.

For my treatment, see DADT Chapter 5, Section 4.

 Tory Johnson and Robyn Freedman Spizman. Will Work from Home: Earn the Cash--without the Commute. A "Women for Hire" book. New York: Berkley, 2008. ISBN 978-0-425-22285-0. Indexed, 254 pages, paper.

Tory Johnson is ABC News's workplace reporter. This book is kind of a "how-to" manual, with quizzes and checklists, on deciding whether to work from home and how to find work or decide on a second career.  Blogger           



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