Wednesday, November 5, 2008

New Beginning, End of Book

With a new job comes the end of this book.

It was a good book. It made a lot of valid points, several of which I mentioned previously.

Was it incredibly helpful in the job hunt process? Well, not for me, but I can see how it could be the thing that helps someone else land a dream job, or help someone else change careers.

What Color Is Your Parachute? made a lot of excellent points that told me I was doing the right thing in accepting the job I was recently offered. For one thing, it talked about the vast number of jobs created by small companies, like the company that I will be working for starting Monday.

Small companies are everywhere. If you look around your local suburb, you'll find many businesses that you did not know existed. From the traditional franchise business owned by the neighbor down the street, to the lawyer who works out of his home and needs a personal assistant, to the family run companies that are just taking off, small companies are everywhere, and they create more jobs. Period.

Small companies employ far greater numbers in the workforce than you know. By comparison, the number of jobs created by much larger corporate entities is minuscule. Also, those corporate jobs bearing the famous corporate name will be in extremely high demand by job hunters, which decreases your chances of landing that corporate job.

So, yes, the book was valuable in that it helped me realize that working for a small company really is a good thing. It mentioned all the points that you generally think about with small companies: employees may wear a lot of hats and do multiple jobs; the benefits may not be as generous as a large company; you may get more actual hands-on experience at a small company; you may work more closely with the owners of a small company and reap the value of their experience.

That being said, the book contained a lot of information that I did not find valuable. There were chapters devoted to how to relocate to other parts of the country and find a job quickly; how to relocate to a foreign country and find a job (and pitfalls of worker visas); how to change careers after many years in one type of work.

All these chapters were well thought out, well written, and could certainly have value to many people. I just was not looking for that sort of information.

However, I also recognize (and many of my teachers in college also emphasized this point) that the average worker today may change careers 3 to 5 times during his or her lifetime. Not necessarily because they want to, but because they get laid off, or must relocate to take care of a family member, or some other opportunity arises.

I am open-minded enough to realize that I very well could be looking to change careers later down the road, or maybe splorp! will get transferred to his company's other office in Texas. Should anything of that sort happen, I will certainly pick up this book again and follow the exercises designed to help me identify what sort of work I could do well, and enjoy doing, and maybe even enjoy doing in another part of the world.

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