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Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:30 pm
by suomalainen
I think about it like this (assuming I were to start over in my 20s): part-time jobs forever vs full-time job for a little bit.

Part-time job forever (the glorious ski bum lifestyle):
1) Quantity considerations - probably lower hourly pay, but if your expenses are low, you can cover them without having to work full-time, BUT if you spend 20 hrs/week at the part-time job just to cover expenses you will likely need to spend another 20 hrs/week at another part-time job (be it employed or entrepreneur style) so that you can start saving a nut to invest. In this sense, there's no such thing as a part-time work lifestyle (unless/until you have lottery winnings, inheritance, trust fund and/or investments).
2) Quality considerations - I assume that part-time jobs typically are in lower-skilled occupations or at least are more available in lower-skilled occupations, which could mean lower enjoyment or less challenge or whatever from a part-time job. If you don't care about this, it's not a consideration, but in your 20s, you're probably too stupid to know what you will care about in 5 years let alone 20.

Full-time job for a little bit (the boring responsible adult lifestyle):
1) Quantity considerations - probably higher hourly pay, and if you keep expenses low, your saving-to-invest nut grows quickly, BUT you're working 40+ hrs/week at the same job (unless you jump on the promotion or cross-training ladders)
2) Quality considerations - my assumption is that a full-time job is more likely to be more challenging than a part-time job / require a higher skillset. In addition to personal psychological benefits of feeling challenged, there may also be social benefits from a more stimulating colleague group. This assumption, of course, will have numerous counterfactuals.

1) Boredom after a while - once you've done a thing for 5 years, you'll probably have an itch to try something new. Given inertia, a part-time gig may be better suited to address this since the sunk-cost-fallacy/golden handcuffs of staying is much less. Just try something else for low pay, who cares, you don't have anything invested in the job anyway. On the other hand, might as well earn good money for 5 years and live frugally and then be free to try anything you want including a part-time lifestyle. Or NOT - the benefit of having money earn you money!
2) In either case, do NOT pay for a college degree that will not provide ROI. If you want a philosophy degree, just go to a shitty cheap school. If you want a STEM or business or some other degree that has clear employment prospects, consider fancier, more expensive, more prestigious schools.

As you can see, I would (and do) encourage my kids to go the full-time route. It just gives you more options so that when you do figure yourself out (or when you change) later in life, you have the flexibility to upshift, sideshift or downshift. A part-time for life plan doesn't appear to me to have the ability to upshift or downshift - all you can do is bounce around and be a ski bum or beach bum or whatever. And I don't know too many old ski bums. They all grow out of it.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 5:41 pm
by Jin+Guice
I disagree
suomalainen wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:30 pm
probably lower hourly pay
suomalainen wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:30 pm
I assume that part-time jobs typically are in lower-skilled occupations
Neither of these are true across the board, it is true in some industries and not in others.

It's a false dichotomy to say that you can't FIRE without a full-time job, especially if you are very young and have a lot of years to save. It would take some pretty special circumstances for it to not take you longer, but FIRE is still completely achievable. I'm not suggesting working a boring low-paying part-time job or not saving any money. Definitely learn a marketable skill. Frankly, part-time is easier if you have multiple marketable skills. It's not impossible that you'd need to work full-time for a few years before going part-time, but not necessary either. If you're going to go to college you should have a large amount of free time which you can use to try to figure out how to apply the degree/ skills you're learning to getting a part-time job. It is a harder route in that there is no cookie cutter way I can tell you to do it, but it's possible, trust me, I'm doing it.

Perhaps a better way to describe it is that you're a freelancer. This doesn't have to be strictly true, in my case I have a part-time job with several other side gigs that come and go. My GF is a freelance journalist who works part-time advising a college newspaper.

The OP doesn't sound interested in lazyFIRE, but if I was going to go that route I'd work in the service industry. Service industry can pay decently (like $15-$20/ hour) after a few years and doesn't require any degrees. There is an advantage to being young and hip looking if you're going this route. The hours are pretty flexible and part-time is definitely available. I worked at a restaurant in college and hated it so I would never do this, but I think it's doable. I don't know anyone who is doing it this way though.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 6:17 pm
by daylen
Keywords: probably, typically, usually

These words are responsible for 60% of supposed disagreements; the other 40% are due to emphasis and false presumptions.

80% of readers will read my previous statements and think I am rebelling against sloppy language use. In actuality, I am making an absurd joke about statistical bias in general that is not directed at anyone in particular.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 6:53 pm
by BMF1102
@ Shadow - You fast tracked HS that's awesome.
shadow wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 8:24 pm
pursue ERE which in my case would be after graduating college (impractical not to go at this point)
I didn't know what I was gonna do after HS but, I wish someone would have pointed me to Trade Unions (carpenters, pipefitters, sheetmetal, linemen/electricians, boilermakers, millwrights, operators etc.) back then.

All trades and even locals within the same trade have different arrangements. So I would advise really looking into how each one works in your area.

First a few disadvantages-
Depending on trade can be extremely labor intensive
Pretty much requires owning a vehicle
Feast/Famine, odd hours/schedules, flexible - basically no guranteed hours... but honestly are any jobs guranteed?

Advantages I see-
Fairly high wages 20-50/hr depending on trade and geographical location. 1st year apprentice usually starts at 55-65% of Journeyman rate
Health Insurance
Free schooling, some trades actually earn degrees and certificates from colleges.
Flexible, seasonal, odd hours/schedules... now I know I listed this as a disadvantage and to some people they may be. This is by far my favorite advantage though.

I'm not sure how all trades work but I think they make a good option for someone looking to do more with their life than work 40 hours a week/ 50 weeks a year.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 10:33 pm
by suomalainen
Jin+Guice wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 5:41 pm
It would take some pretty special circumstances for it to not take you longer, but FIRE is still completely achievable.
This is all I was suggesting with "probably" and "typically". If you're [lucky]*, you'll find success via off-the-beaten-path. But I think that kind of success "typically" takes a unique kind of person and/or unique circumstances. And if you're asking anonymous strangers on the internet, you're "probably" not that kind of person. As they say, no one had to teach Mozart how to write symphonies.

* insert whatever word here you want

And note to @daylen and others - I'm aware of my biases and try to make clear in my posts when and where I am making assumptions (which are in turn based on my biases). I think that's the fairest way to present my opinion since in ALL of these life questions there is no right answer.** There isn't really room for "disagreements" in such areas. Just because two anecdotes are different doesn't mean they "disagree". One just has to find one's own path. In speaking to others and in giving advice to others, you can really only speak in generalities. My bias is that young people are stupid - not meant offensively, it just means that kids don't typically*** know who they are and what they want, and that's fine. But if that is the case, my general advice which is probably good advice to [a majority] of kids is to make choices that give you a good base for future success in a wide range of future choices - don't foreclose future options by making really dumb choices. The most basic of such general advice is 1) don't have kids (e.g., knock someone up/get knocked up), 2) don't get arrested, 3) don't get into drugs, 4) don't go into debt and 5) be frugal. The rest is charting your own course.

** for example:
suomalainen wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:30 pm
This assumption, of course, will have numerous counterfactuals.
*** if you aren't typical and you know what you want, why are you seeking advice from anonymous strangers on the interwebs? Hell, I'm 40 and I'm still figuring out who I am and what I want. I wouldn't do 90% of the things I read about on these forums, but everyone's life experiences and thoughts, though different from mine, help me figure myself out.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:00 pm
by daylen
@suo Fast and loose language has use. I was trying to point out that if an argument/opinion uses such keywords, then disagreement over the exact quantification is premature. The bias I had in mind was equating probably with certainty.

I suppose part of me wants to be a linguistic lubricator.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:17 pm
by suomalainen
@daylen Understood. I wasn't trying to make a precise argument. I was providing my viewpoint on the topic in general in response to the op's question. And it appeared the op was thinking of part-time work that pays in the area of $11.25 an hour (see one of op's follow-up posts). So, that makes me think of retail stores, mcdonalds or other restaurants, etc. - the "starbucks barista" retirement route. But I knew I was speaking in generalities, so I used squishy terms.

If, on the other hand, you have specific knowledge of or leads to good part time work, like @BMF appears to provide, and you can compare specific opportunities, then that changes the question entirely and such broad assumptions are not needed any more. To answer that hypothetical, I'd be MUCH more interested in $20-$50/hr part time work right off the bat, depending on what "extremely labor intensive" means from a short term and long term perspective. But, exploring life's possibilities and figuring out what you want and what fits you is all part of the fun, so I wish the op luck as s/he begins the journey. Thinking of these things while still in high school bodes very well for the op.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:39 pm
by daylen
@suo You misunderstand. My joke was actually triggered by Gin's comment, but it was more of a general comment since I notice this pattern frequently: one person uses fast and loose language, then another claims to disagree. The actual disagreement usually arises due to some form of misinterpretation.

I tend to agree with your thoughts that high paying, part-time work is not something that people just fall into. Freelancing can pay well, but it takes time to develop a trusting network of contacts/customers.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:40 pm
by shadow
Thanks for all the replies.

Skipping a grade sucks for the most part right now but I’m sure I will thank my parents later(it was kindergarten).

@BMF I have considered trades for a bit but I have too much to lose not going to college (I think I discussed this in another thread).

@Jin+Guice “Freelancer” is a good description of what I was thinking of. Your girlfriend’s situation sounds good except I would ideally want to use multiple skills for different projects as you said (and are doing).

@suomalainen 11.25 was a purely hypothetical number just to test the assumption rigorously, I would be looking for high skilled work. Because of that I was thinking (hoping) it would be more satisfying/less grueling than a 9-5.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Fri Jan 04, 2019 12:32 pm
by Jean
In your situation (As you already said you already passed a lot of classes). Maybe rushing college and then thinking about a trade again would be a good idea. If you think you won't fit in the world of college educated people, it's very likely you won't.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:27 am
by shadow
Thanks for suggesting this, I never even considered it.

Lately I’ve been getting into homesteading so I’ve been considering an agriculture degree but worried about my ability to get a job with it—that’s actually what prompted the idea for this thread. A trade would be a smooth transition.

Do you think it would be viable to work as an apprentice part time during college? That would be even smoother.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 10:08 am
by Jean
I'm not american, so I have no Idea. In switzerland it would be impossible, you learn a trade at the age were you would otherwise go to highschool (15-18), you can also do it later if you find a master. It involves working 4 days a week, and going to school 1 day a week. Then you can go to a university in the same field as your trade to get a technical or engineering degree. People with this kind of background are in very high demand in switzerland.

I imagine that if you get a technical degree, and then supplement it with a trade, It might open a lot of doors to you. If I had to start over, I'de do this.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 10:50 am
by George the original one
shadow wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:27 am
Lately I’ve been getting into homesteading so I’ve been considering an agriculture degree but worried about my ability to get a job with it—that’s actually what prompted the idea for this thread.
Oh, god, no! Agriculture degree will have virtually nothing to do with homesteading. Agriculture is big mechanized thinking, typically focused on single products (think industrial cattle, pork, & poultry, and wineries), nearly directly opposite of what you need to know for homesteading. Just take a biology class or two and you'll have the basics; leave the bachelor degree effort for something that will likely generate a good income.

Going down the trades route, carpentry or mechanics would be more in line with useful homesteading skills than Agriculture.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:33 pm
by Riggerjack
I think you will have better results, if you look into freelance work, rather than a part time job. To the FT employee, they are nearly the same, to the freelancer, and client, there is a world of difference.

A job, whether it is PT or FT, involves an employer, who has work that needs to be done. The employer will provide the facility to get the work done in, the bookkeeping staff to track pay and benefits, supervision, goals, etc. The employee provides presence, some skills, and hopefully enough productivity to make their presence and net positive for their employer.

A freelancer has a set if skills that he/she can provide for a fee. The freelancer may or may not be on site. May or may not be "benefitted" with the other services the employer provides above. Generally, the less the employer provides in services, the more cash can be had, given the same freelancer skills.

This means that as a freelancer, you will need to deal with plenty of headaches employees will not. It's a trade off between security and freedom. Choose what you like.

So, if you want to work PT, what you want is a skill that you can sell, freelance. Look to Augustus, (freelance software) and 7w5 (substitute teacher) for how this looks in practice.

But if I were 17 again, I would love the firefighter/student combo. And after graduation, the firefighter/entrepreneur combination. Ffj has a thread here all about the fire service.

Good luck.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Tue Jan 08, 2019 3:55 pm
by shadow
Thanks for the advice. That was my gut reaction too but I looked into the program further and there are several horticulture, soil science, etc. classes as part of the major.

I figured that even though homesteading and traditional agriculture have different ends it would still be helpful to learn the "dark arts" so to speak... just to understand deeply how to farm.

Do you think the different purposes would make the degree useless?

EDIT: I also figured I could probably spin the degree into a job without too much difficulty.

Thanks for the reply. You have piqued my interest with the fire service but I skimmed through the thread and the difficulty & danger seems like a little much for me.

Re: Full Time Jobs?

Posted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 10:36 am
by George the original one
Take the Ag classes that interest you as science electives. Just pay attention to the prerequisites to make sure you're eligible to enroll in them.

You do know that many college graduates don't work in the field they majored in?