We're Not Dead. Here's a reality check. According to World Bank data, the United States still accounts for 25% of world gross domestic product and 25% of global manufacturing output; China isn't even close. The Chicago Federal Reserve says the primary reason we're losing manufacturing jobs isn't offshoring, it's because productivity has been rising at an incredible average of 3% per year since 1949. That's no consolation if you lost your job, but it's hardly a competitive disadvantage.
A few months ago, a group of dealers approached me about developing a seminar on managing the next generation of workers. I have to admit I was not 100% sold on the idea. Not that I wasn't interested: I've done enough research to know that the housing industry will change more in the next decade than it has in the past three as baby boomers retire and millennials, now in their teens and 20s, start buying homes. It's not that I don't think the topic is important, either. Attracting young talent is the most pressing long-range challenge dealers face.