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Are you in a ‘revolving door’ career?

I was reading more predictions for 2013 — generally a useless exercise — but mbopartner’s Countdown to 2013: Five Key Predictions for the Future Workforce had some actually interesting things to say, especially the idea of a ‘revolving door’ career:

Long considered a negative, the new ‘Revolving Door’ career between independent work and traditional employment will become a career positive for both employers and workers.  By the end of this decade, one in two members of the U.S. private workforce will have tasted or embraced career independence, moving seamlessly between traditionally employed and independent work roles. As professionals revolve, they will also evolve, gaining specific, marketable expertise to help take them to the next career level.

  • Expect individuals to move between full-time and contract gigs in an attempt to climb, and not fall down, the career ladder.
  • Expect an ever-greater number of career reinventions from late-stage experts retiring from traditional work and starting solo professional services firms.
  • Expect more returning workers to offer fresh perspective and energy and help to re-shape the enterprise’s view of worker value and impact.

I’m not so sure about the ‘seamless’ transition between traditional work and independent freelancing, but I can see that this is much more likely to happen in the future. And I do agree that an individual might leave a company to deep dive into a field of interest — for example, user experience design — and after a few years of intense focus as an individual practitioner, might revolve/evolve into a full-time employee again, perhaps at a client company.

Are you in a revolving door career, or fixed at one side or the other?