Despite pandemic, study shows Americans optimistic about job market

How optimistic are Americans about the job market? A new comprehensive study from the University of Phoenix has some data that may surprise you.

Joining us to discuss it, is Dr. John Woods, the chief academic officer, and provost for the University of Phoenix

"There is a lot of fascinating insights in the data and we are really encouraged by it," said Woods. "Seven out of 10 Americans, despite as you said everything that has gone on and everything we have been through, seven and 10 Americans remain optimistic or hopeful about their careers which is pretty phenomenal when you think about it."

Americans are optimistic people.  But what would you attribute to this great optimism?

"It's a little bit like you said, it is inherent in the American ideal to be gritty, determined, optimistic, and hopeful," he said. "And as you said, it is surprising, especially when one in three reports of the pandemic that we went through knocked them off course in their careers. 

"We can only attribute to something that is in need as you said or inherent in the American ideal. They have good reason to be optimistic in terms of how they assess their career readiness, they think they are employable and if they had to do a job search they think they are ready, 

"I saw a lot of different insights in the career optimism index, those are a couple and as you said, underlying at all is this American ideal around grit and determination."

Eight in 10 Americans say they are highly employable and seven of 10 say they are ready to search for a new job if needed.

Woods says searching and meeting others in a virtual world has made things easier.

"You are at home and perhaps able to scan for opportunities, the career optimism index points out something might have been able to do enjoy this time," Woods said. "Even though they might not be able to do it in person and that is network. Folks in the survey reported that if they could network more if they could have a mentor if they could talk to someone who had a job that they themselves aspire to have themselves that those things would be helpful.

"Well, we could not do that in person as we are showing right now, with technology we are basically able to connect with anybody anywhere."

Dr. Woods says the survey found that one of the things people needed was emotional and mental health be she of the stress and isolation.