Relatively Free Consulting

A few months back I talked with a gentleman who was seeking work. He didn't need a job like a lot of Americans do today; this retired electrical engineer just wanted to keep busy.

I suggested he try to network through a professional association and I thought that was the end of it.

About a week ago, I received a note that Steve Babinszky wants to pay for a job wanted ad. That is, he wants to give us money so he can volunteer his services part time or by project contract. Right. It's hard to take this seriously but the irony is that he is serious. He already has posted this ad on a forum of a competing Web site and I found his free services listed on a job site.

In his "ad," Babinszky welcomes all electrical, power distribution, control and 4 to 20 mA signal, and SCADA questions. He says he used to work at Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Space Gateway Support Facilities Utilities and Water and Wastewater Department.

In these hard times, an offer such as this seems to be truly golden. But what are the red flags coming up in your mind? Is there a liability issue or do you think this person is just cracked? Would you respect him more if he asked for money? Or perhaps if he was affiliated with some professional group, such as SCORE (counselors to America's small business)?

I'm not trying to find him a job. I'm trying to find an answer. Do you think retired persons with valuable skills can work at cost in the environmental/water field? If not, why not? Isn't this another commodity to be reused?

Posted by L.K. Williams, EPonline on Mar 27, 2009

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