THE LUCK FACTOR.
Many people who really work very hard and follow all the rules fail to succeed, while success sometimes seems to fall ‘into others’ laps. One could hardly plan or arrange for one’s immediate superior to drop dead at-just the moment when one is ideally qualified to move into the vacated position, .but many promotions hinge on just such Anyone who tries to prove that life is always fair has assumed a difficult task. As stated earlier, some sectors of the economy are much better paid than others. A large part of “luck'” probably consists of working in a favorable sector of the economy (Jencks, 1979, p. 307]. Some sectors of the economy will be expanding over the next several decades, offering job security and promotions; others will be declining, offering more layoffs than promotions. The young worker who finds a position in an expanding industry has excellent chances for lifetime job security with pleasant retirement on a good pension. Those who pick a declining industry may be on the scrap heap in later middle age, with no job, no pension, and little chance of getting either. For young people entering the job market, mobility prospects were poor in the 1930sand excellent in the 1950s and 1960s; they de not look so good in the 1980s but probably will be better in the 19905 (because of lower birthrates in the 19705). Having the foresight to be born at the right time is helpful. The luck factor is impossible to measure and is a handy excuse for failure, yet it is-undeniably a factor in mobility.