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5 years time.....
#31
I think a lot of people who are in their 30's wanting to move advisory or consultantcy positions now should be encouraged to do so as they will have a lot of good field experience. However, I think there is some sort of interesting graph to be drawn where by the longer some people stay in the field, the less interested they are in advisory/consultancy roles, perhaps largely becasue they can see what an equal load of cock it all is and its far more fun to at least dig up some cool stuff if you can get by with what you are earning.

In 5 years time perhaps we will be getting over this as a profession, but perhaps also that wont necessarily be a good thing for the archaeological sites of the UK as people will be encouraged/forced to go into consultancy/advice/managment earlier.

Another thing I have been thinking about for the 5 years theme is the amount of frustrated people setting themselves up as freelance. If there are less 'big digs' where collective working is paramount, might more and more people just set up on their own after a relatively short 'apprentiship' with an organisation? This is a definite trend, and what do people think about think about the pos's and cons of freelance vs organisations, and where should one be picking up the 'crucial experience' can you be self-taught? I think the profession will have to confront these questions at some point
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#32
i think there have been a lot of one man and his dog(s) bands out there since the early days of ppg16 and some of them shouldnt be because they didnt spend enough time learning their craft - though some did. there may will be a better market for such in the future because they can work cheep and cheerfully with low overheads and i would suggest that they form loose federations in order to undertake the slightly larger jobs when they come up. quite possibly the only way forward unless you work in an uber unit

i would like to see more journeymen diggers get in devcon and consultancy as a natural progression which utilses the skillsets they have worked so hard for and for a remuneration that makes upo for the crap they have had in the past. also to add some realism to those parts of the profession who are on their knees for developers in the dry
If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about answers
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#33
gwyl Wrote:in 5 years' time will you still be squabbling?

all the way to Lime Street
If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about answers
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#34
gumbo Wrote:Another thing I have been thinking about for the 5 years theme is the amount of frustrated people setting themselves up as freelance. If there are less 'big digs' where collective working is paramount, might more and more people just set up on their own after a relatively short 'apprentiship' with an organisation?

I've also seen an increase in people setting up on their own over the last couple of years, and the obvious comment is that it works for some people and not for others. Some have the experience to do the small jobs and the contacts to win the large jobs, like the freedom of being their own boss and can live with the pressure of constantly needing to find the next contract to ensure that they can pay the bills. Others probably go down this route too soon, without any knowledge of the business side of being freelance or the archaeological experience to deal with difficult sites, or simply prefer the relative security of a regular pay packet.

I could see a model where informal networks of contacts grow up between freelance archaeologists, whereby if one wins a job that needs four people on site, they contact other freelancers working in that area to help out, on the basis that this would be reciprocated when one of the others wins a large job in the future. This would allow sole traders to bid for and win larger jobs against more formal units, without having the complexity and expense of paying for a 'standing' workforce. There's probably some downside that I've overlooked, and it's possible that it could be viewed as a cartel, but it seems like a nice idea to me.
You know Marcus. He once got lost in his own museum
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#35
yeh i think this loose conglomerate thing will increase. it has happened in Norfolk already. but i supsect it probably has an income ceiling too. the real point though was if this is increasing what does one recommend to a new starter? gets some skills at a bigger organsiation but then move on? For me personally, although setting up on my own has some attractions I like working in an organisation not for the potential security but if you feel like you are contributing to something bigger. This, of course, is a much bigger debate as how do you square a Ltd organisation that is profit driven with furthering society etc etc. This is why heritage trusts, charities and counnty council units were always a better idea in my opinion
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#36
The obvious drawback to Marcus's model is that the five hypothetical freelancers (or probably more correctly sole traders) are quite likely to have all tendered for the same job in the first place.
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#37
The five hypothetical freelancers will have cut their quotes down to the bone only to be further under cut by a bunch of hobbyists ( who have degrees and can do a perfectly good job) who take the job for fun and with no knowledge or interest in the going rate because they are not doing it for a living . Welcome to the big society and localism :face-stir:
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#38
ahhh, but that is the free-market my friend
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#39
Quote:it is often hard to appreciate the importance of things without first-hand experience of them

Absolutely, well said Gwylym and it is for precisely that reason I believe that all archaeologists should spend 5 years working in consultancy before they are allowed near a trowel.
[INDENT]Shiny assed county mounty, office lurker, coffee junkie and facebook scanner[/INDENT]
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#40
Quote:i would like to see more journeymen diggers get in devcon and consultancy

between us PP I probably fit that bill, but I only spent x years digging because it's so hard to break into Curatorial / Development Management roles through that route. 10 years seems excessive and not necessarily twice as good as 5 years, especially given lack of structure/training. In a lifetime in archaeology you'll still not have seen it all, but if it takes someone 10 years to attain a reasonable degree of competence and experience for other 'hands off' roles there's summat wrong. But yeah, I agree with the principle, was just playing. :face-approve:

I think we're all agreed on the need for a better framework across the board, unfortunately Planning Inspectors are possibly more impressed with the letters after a person's name.
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