Rebuilding Hartford on a Budget

I feel like most plans to revitalize our state capital involve lots of demolition and rebuilding. Sure, some crumbling city infrastructure has to go, but there is plenty of vacant space around the city. Why can’t a revitalization plan include some frugality instead of just big budgets and big dreams? Walking around downtown, I look into empty office after office and see “For Rent” or “available” signs. Some see that as a problem– I feel like it could be a big opportunity for our state. I recently read an article from the Hartford Courant about the availability of small office spaces in the city. So, Hartford has plenty of vacant, low rent (compared to nearby Boston and New York) buildings near a nice if somewhat empty downtown area. People need a little encouragement to move in so here’s my unsolicited ideas—feel free to argue against it at any time. I’m[read more]

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Do you think we’re too focused on being specialized?

There are a lot more good employees than good jobs. The growth of job boards, online resume submissions, and networking sites like Linkedin have created a situation where resumes are everywhere. It’s easier than ever to sit with your laptop and fire off 100 resumes to potential employers all over the world. This causes huge problems for employers, who then create really specific job descriptions for their postings so applicants can be filtered out or discouraged from applying. The rise of contracting services and temporary employment also feeds the ultra-specialization movement. Employers can bring in specialists for certain tasks, and expect them to “hit the ground running” (if you’ve looked for a job lately, I’m sure you’ve seen that phrase a few times). When that task is done, they can look for another specialist to fill some other role. There’s no time or need to train anyone to do a[read more]

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