Here are my most recent posts on Job Searching
Well, I wasn't entirely sure where to start on exploring the careers that might blend my skills and interests together, so I decided to start with the realm of education. My most recent experience is as a middle school math teacher. Because of this, I decided to make education my starting point, and we shall see where it leads from here.
Educational, Vocational, and School Counselors
- Provide academic and career counseling to students and adults
- Most professionals are located in schools
- Counselors outside of schools are often called career counselors
- Like to help others
- Able to inspire trust in others
- Work individually as well as on a team
- This field is expected to grow over the next 10 years
- Average salary: $55,030
This career definitely seems to be one that would allow me to make a difference by helping other people. Also, there is an analytical or problem-solving component to helping people navigate their school or career. I'm not sure if my current career search would be a help or a detriment to my ability to give advice. Any thoughts?
- Teach adults a variety of subjects at community colleges, adult high schools, university extension programs, and prisons.
- Adult educators are often part-time employees
- Interest in educating adults
- Adults are more developed than children, but they can also be less flexible
- On the contrary, adults in school usually know what they need to learn and why
- Adult Educators that can teach English Second Language (ESL) are in high demand
- Average pay: $24.23 per hour
I think it would be very interesting to teach adults instead of children. It would definitely change the dynamics of planning and classroom management. However, I'm concerned about the fact that it is mostly a part-time career - may make it hard to provide for the family I'm planning on having.
- Measure student learning
- Work with and train teachers
- Develop and order educational materials
- Instructional Coordinators are often specialized in one subject area
- Good at making decisions
- Able to balance working with people, books, and technology
- Most demand is in reading, math, science, and technology
- Average salary: $61,270
At the school where I taught, I was the only middle school math teacher, which meant that I was in charge of developing the math curriculum and instruction for all of the middle school students. I very much enjoyed this part of my job, and I also enjoyed working with other teachers. These seem like good reasons to look more at this field. (Not to mention my math specialty is a plus!)
Well, this is the start of my search of careers. I'll keep these in mind, but my next post may be outside of the education realm. Therefore, you should stay tuned to see where this journey may lead me. Thanks for joining, and don't forget to comment on your thoughts!
I've decided to put my search in the education realm on the side for the moment. Notice that I didn't say that I'm closing the door, but I thought I would explore some of what the business world has to offer. Below are some of the lovely business and finance careers that I've found.
- Creates, studies, and oversees budgets of organizations and businesses
- About 40% work for federal, state, or local government
- Good with numbers
- Clear communicator and effective leader
- Problem solver
- Able to juggle projects with tight deadlines
- Because the information budget analysts give is so important, they are not often laid off
- Average salary: $69,240
I've heard some good financial benefits for working for the government. The first component that Ari Chatz discussed in job searching is the value of money. This security may be helpful in providing for that future family I keep mentioning! I don't really have anything negative to say about budget analysts. I like working with numbers and problem-solving. I would definitely get to work with other people. On the contrary, this career doesn't seem to jump out to me as something I would love to do. Perhaps, I should leave it alone for now and come back to see if my feelings change. Any thoughts/advice on this would be greatly appreciated!
Buyer and Purchaser
- Looks for high-quality products or services at low costs
- Buyers look for products that can be resold to the public
- Purchasers look for supplies/services for organizations to use
- Risk taking
- Problem solving
- Strong research skills
- Clear communication
- Leader as well as working well with a team
- Typically need work experience
- Buyers usually come from engineering, business, economics, or an applied science
- Purchasers usually need a master's degree
- Average salary:
- Buyer - $55,480
- Purchaser - $58,550
I would not really call myself a risk taker. Not that I'm afraid to risk or that I wouldn't risk to some extent. However, the fact that one of the main skills mentioned for this career is taking risks makes me nervous. I think this alone is enough to keep me from going into the career. I know that my engineering experience may be helpful, but I think I'd like a career with perhaps less risk.
- Figures out costs of construction projects and manufacturing products
- Accounts for price of materials, cost of labor, effects of climate, and more
- Experienced analysts can work independently as a consultant
- Being a math fan
- Good at planning and organizing
- Enjoy comparison shopping
- Having work experience helps getting into the career
- Can be a stressful career, which can allow for high turn-over
- The industry tends to slow with poor economy
- Average salary: $61,190
- Engineers tend to start with higher salaries
Well, I am definitely a big fan of math, and I love "number crunching". Not to mention, I come from an engineering background - which seems to be an advantage in this field. I'm not entirely sure how I feel about comparison shopping, but I guess I'm essentially doing that with this career search. I'm a little concerned that jobs might be hard to find in this struggling economy, but overall, I like what I'm seeing!
- Helps organizations come up with investment strategies
- Spots stock market trends
- Keeps tabs on up-and-coming companies
- Like to work with numbers
- Quick thinking at problem solving
- Clear communicator
- Days are usually filled with phone calls and meetings, so evenings usually mean time for research
- Currently a growing industry
- Having a master's degree in business or finance can be a help
- Bonus checks are often available for good financial advice
- Average salary: $85,240
Stock market. I've never been a big fan or really understood how it all works. I could definitely learn, but I'm not sure this career would be for me. I definitely am drawn toward the problem solving, working with numbers, and communicating with others aspects of this job. However, this career doesn't seem to fit my skills enough to inspire me to really learn the world of stock market finances. Thanks, financial analysts, but I think I'm going to pass on this one.
Well, I went looking to explore the world of business, but I think I got more of a tour of the finance world. I'm not really disappointed. I guess I was just thinking this step would be a little different. I do love number crunching, so I think I should look more into the world of finance careers. Don't worry, I'm sure I'll look more into the world of business. For right now, my curiosity is not yet fulfilled. Tune in for more to come!
As promised, I've looked at some more careers in the world of finance. Enjoy!
Meeting and Convention Planner
- Organize events for businesses and organizations
- Travel to many places
- Meet and work with a lot of people
- Juggle a large number of details related to planning events
- Personable, organized communication
- Attention to detail
- Work well under pressure and at a fast pace
- Long hours are usually worked immediately before and during events
- This field can be sensitive to the economy
- Average salary: $48,060
I definitely have an interest in planning events. Also, I'm very detail focused and work well under pressure. I am also drawn to the fact that I could work with a number of people in this field and act as a leader to help the events run smoothly. I'm also not opposed to traveling. I wouldn't say I want to be on the road all the time, but I do enjoy going to new places! (Sorry this career doesn't fit as well in the finance category, but a nice career none-the-less!)
Personal Financial Planner
- Help people manage their money (short term and long term)
- Decide on investments in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and more
- Good listener and clear communicator
- Problem solver who likes to work with numbers
- Expected to be one of the fastest growing fields in the next 10 years
- Tends to be a large amount of competition
- Average salary: $94,180
I do like problem solving, and I love working with numbers. I've also always been a saver, so although I don't have an expertise in financial advising, I do have a saving mindset. However, just as I commented on the financial analyst career yesterday, I don't find the stock market a compelling component. I definitely like this career better than financial analyst, but I don't know that it really speaks to me.
Real Estate Appraiser
- Decide how much buildings and lands are worth
- Inspect properties, compare to similar properties, and study their locations
- Math fan
- Good communicator
- Need a license to work as an appraiser
- Once licensed, you can appraise other things (i.e. jewelry)
- Expect to have little growth in the next 10 years
- Jobs depend on the house market
- Average salary: $53,520
I like the idea of systematically looking at a building or a property and establishing a price. This reminds me a lot of the cost estimator that I talked about yesterday. However, I am a little concerned about how much this career works in a team. In my mind, an appraiser is a lone guy going to a property and giving a report to the client when it's all said and done. If this is the case, I don't know how compelled I'd be to take on this career, but I could quite possibly be mistaken. I'll definitely keep this career in mind, but I will need to research it more before being able to make a decision.
Well, that's what I've come up with for the wonderful world of finance. I have to say, I've been surprised. Perhaps, I had a mental block about this field. I don't know why, but I think it existed. However, my love for math and problem solving seems to fit well in a lot of the careers I've found. Now, I'll look at other aspects of the business world. Sales. Marketing. Management. I don't know! Keep tuning in to see where this journey goes next.
When I was in high school, I worked for a local bakery. As part of my job, I took our bread to a flea market and sold it to people. I would stand there with samples of bread on the table ready to be sliced and yell out, "Free bread samples! Come and get 'em!" Now, this wasn't some marketing genius that I came up with. I was just doing what my boss told me. On my second day at the flea market, the woman in the booth next to me said, "I've been here for 30 years, and I've never seen anyone sell like you. How long you been doing this?" I answered, "I just started yesterday!" Well, I've had a few other "sales" experiences since then, and I have seemed to have an ability to sell. Now, I'm not saying I'm the best sales person around, but I figured this might be a good place to look after the wonderful world of finance.
Insurance Sales Agent
- Help people select policies for life, health, and property
- Outgoing and confident
- Good communication of technical information
- Interested in continued education
- Online companies have slightly reduced the need for agents
- Beginners can have trouble getting enough clients to earn a living
- Pay may be on commission alone or a combination of commission and base salary
- Average salary: $61,330
I haven't always thought of insurance as an exciting place to make a career. I can't come up with a reason why I shouldn't consider this career, but there doesn't seem to be much about the career that gets me really excited. I will definitely keep it in mind, but I'm betting there is something out there that I will feel more passionate about!
Real Estate Broker and Sales Agent
- Sell people's properties
- Help buyers to find the right property for them
- Aggressive personality
- Strong math skill
- Interest in the economy
- Brokers and agents typically work evenings and weekends
- Need a license to work in the field
- Typically easy to start, but can be hard to earn a living with a poor economy
- Average salary:
- Broker - $78,360
- Agent - $53,100
I've always thought that being a real estate agent would be exciting - taking people around to houses; showing all the great things that properties have to offer; working with people to try to help them find their "dream home". That seems great! I'm worried about the skill set of this field, though. I wouldn't necessarily call myself an aggressive personality. Also, I like to stay informed of what is going on in the economy, but I don't particularly have a high interest in it. For these reasons, I'm not sure real estate agent is the career for me.
- Sell complex products and services
- Help clients choose, customize, and troubleshoot products
- Being a math fan that likes to persuade people
- Likes knowing how things work
- Likes to travel and talk with people
- Many sales engineers start as engineers
- Hours are usually set by each person
- Average salary: $90,540
- Incentives are often given for good performance
I come from an engineering background. As I mentioned, I seem to have an ability to sell. So far so good. I like the idea of traveling to meet with people and help them find which products or services will fit their business the best. I definitely like understanding how things work. I think I've found a definite career possibility. Stick around to see!
Well, there you have it. Selling insurance, real estate, and complex engineering products. I think I like what I've seen so far, so tune in next time as I look at other careers in the sales world. See you then!
Yesterday, I explored some of what the world of sales has to offer. Take a look at a few other options that I missed!
Sales Representative (Wholesale and Manufacturing)
- Sell products from manufacturers to wholesalers
- Sell products from wholesalers to retailers
- Like to interact and form relationships with people
- Persuasive communicator
- Works well with a team, but can work well alone
- Sales reps may work with an engineer for complex products
- Salaries are usually based on commission
- Average salary:
- Technical or scientific products - $81,370
- Other products - $61,400
I like to work with people and build relationships with them. This field seems as though it would allow me to do that both with my clients as well as with a team of sales reps. Also, I come from an engineering background which could make me more marketable in selling the technical products. I might be mistaken in that assumption, but I figure it couldn't hurt too much!
Sales Worker Supervisor
- Heads a sales team
- Keeps track of inventory
- Makes sure customers are happy
- A self-starter who can make quick decisions
- Able to get along with a variety of people
- Organize and communicate with staff efficiently
- Expected to have very slow growth in the next 10 years
- Supervisors usually work long hours and weekends
- Having sales experience helps to get in the field
- Average salary: $39,130
I definitely think of myself as a self-starter, and I get along very well with many different people. I have had some leadership positions, and have very much enjoyed managing a team of people. These make me excited about this career. However, I'm worried about the slow growth that is expected. Also, the average salary is a little lower that I would have thought. A lot of work with not much reward - I'm not so sure.
- Help people plan trips all over the world
- Loves to travel and explore new things
- Problem solver
- Enjoys helping others
- Many travel agents specialize in one area or type of travel
- There is expected to be little or no growth in the field over the next 10 years
- Receiving training and becoming specialized helps
- Average salary: $32,450
I do enjoy traveling, but I don't know if I would say that I love it. I am interested in finding a career that helps people, and I want to do some sort of problem solving. All good things! Again, I'm worried about the growth in the field. The fact that there is expected to be no growth means that the only spot I would be able to fill is the spot of someone that leaves. Not too promising, if you ask me. Plus, the average salary is not incredibly exciting.
That's what I found on some of the interesting fields in sales. When I was looking at the sales worker supervisor, I was reminded of how much I enjoyed holding leadership positions while I was in college. I seemed to have a great ability there too. Perhaps, my next venture into the world of business should be centered on management positions. I have a feeling this could get exciting!
As I was researching careers in the management realm, I came across many that seemed appealing at first glance. I explored a large number of careers, and I don't feel it would be very worthwhile to highlight all of them here. Instead, I'm going to highlight some of the ones that I was most found of. I hope it will still give a good overview of what management careers have to offer and highlight some of my decision-making process. If you're curious at all about the careers I'm skipping over, feel free to contact me!
- Provide direction for day-to-day management of child-care centers and schools
- Oversee education program at other businesses and institutions
- Strong leadership and communication skills
- Organized and efficient
- Able to handle day-to-day operations and long-term planning
- There is expect to be little to now growth in higher education administration
- Average salary:
- Child-care: $48,170
- Elementary & Secondary: $87,390
- Higher Education: $95,340
Having spent the last two years teaching in a school, I have considered the possibility of getting into education administration somewhat. A few of my former roommates were working on their master's degree in order to be a principal in the future. In talking with them, I haven't always felt that being a principal is exactly what I would like to do. I have considered, however, working in higher education as an admissions counselor, and I've also reflected on the possibility of leading education programs in a business capacity. I think that education administration is a possibility for me, but I see it playing out in ways besides being a school principal.
Engineering and Science Manager
- Engineering managers oversee engineers, scientists, or technicians
- Science managers direct research and development divisions
- Both work to translate complicated concepts to the consumer
- Good at math and science
- Work well with people from various backgrounds
- Able to manage a team
- Most begin as an engineer or a scientist
- Science managers are expected to have some growth, but engineering managers will see very little growth in the next 10 years
- This can vary depending on the specific industry
- Average salary:
- Engineering: $122,810
- Science: $127,000
I feel that this is another career that seems to allow me to utilize my engineering background. I like the fact that I would work in both the engineering world and the world of the consumer. I feel that I am able to communicate with a variety of people, and this could make me a great asset to this type of position. The average salary for this career is much higher than the others I've found so far, which is definitely exciting. Although, I'm curious as to how qualified I would be for this position; I may need more work experience in an engineering field to qualify.
- Oversee monetary concerns of businesses or organizations
- Problem solver
- Clear communicator
- Likes to work with numbers
- Many work for insurance companies or banks
- This field requires continued education to be effective
- Job market can be very competitive
- Having a master's degree or certification is helpful
- Average salary: $113,730
This career seemed very appealing at first glance. I enjoyed many of the finance careers that I looked at earlier. Plus, I've expressed interest in managing and leading teams. It appeared this might be a great blend of the two. Upon a closer look, I feel the "management" part of this career is overseeing the money - not the people. While it is still attractive, I am not overly excited about this position.
Human Resources Manager
- Answer questions about health care
- Work out disagreements among employees
- Ensure employees are being treated fairly
- Clear communicator
- Likes to meet new people
- Able to work on many projects at once
- There is expected to be a lot of growth in this field over the next 10 years
- Average salary: $105,000
Although my source didn't mention anything about teaching/training employees, I envision there is definitely some possibility to utilize my education background in this area. I know that this career doesn't seem to have as much of the technical components as some of my recent searches, but I see plenty of opportunity for problem solving and critical thinking. I also would definitely get plenty of opportunity to work with a lot of people to help them in their job responsibilities. I didn't necessarily have high hopes for this career at first, but I'm very pleasantly surprised!
So, there is a little taste of some of the management careers that I was drawn toward. Tune in tomorrow, because I have a few more careers that I think are worth mentioning!
Here are the last of the management careers that I've chosen to highlight. I hope you enjoy - there are some great careers!
- Oversee day-to-day operations of hotels or motels
- Make sure customers are provided with their desired experiences
- Able to communicate with a variety of people
- Problem solver
- Ability to remember details
- Calm under pressure
- Usually work with employees instead of only directing
- Expected to have little growth in the next 10 years
- Average salary: $53,500
- Opportunity for big bonuses with good performance
It's outstanding that lodging managers work closely with their employees instead of sitting in their office and "barking out" orders. I've always liked to lead by example and give instructions only when needed. I also like the idea of working to make people more comfortable during their stay. I think this would be something that I would really enjoy. My only concern is that I have expressed an interest in planning projects or events. I feel this career might end up being more of implementation of the same plan, instead of making new plans to accommodate changing needs. I still think it's a great career, but I don't know if it is at the very top of my list.
- Think of ways to increase company's profit and productivity
- Strong communication skills
- Works well with others
- Problem solver
- Able to juggle projects on tight deadlines
- About one quarter are self-employed
- A lot of growth in the next 10 years
- Competitive job hunt
- Graduate degree and sales skills are helpful
- Average salary: $85,000
What a great career! As a consultant, I would constantly be working on new projects. I would be analyzing and problem solving all the time. I would work with a lot of people, and I would make a difference in the companies that I consult. On top of this, there is expected to be a lot of growth in the career, and the average salary is pretty notable. I realize that it will likely be a lot of work and very competitive, but I feel that I want to learn the industry well enough to put forth the effort needed. Very cool!
- Run a business or organization
- Combine knowledge of industry with business intelligence
- Able to analyze lots of information
- Strong leadership, communication skills, and ability to motivate
- Balance of being flexible and decisive
- Lots of travel
- Average salary: $167,280
The skill set for this career really speaks to me. I feel that I would be able to fit a role like that quite well. However, I feel that being a top executive would be a hard career to go for as a twenty-something young man just getting into the working world. I hope that I can move into management positions throughout my career and maybe become a top executive at some point, but I don't see it as being my career path at this point in time. Check back with me in 30 years, and you might hear something different ...
Well, I hope you've enjoyed the ride. That concludes the list of careers that I wanted to explore. I've enjoyed a lot of what I've seen. Now, I'm going to take a look back at the careers and try to narrow down this list to a top three. Tune in to find out my "dream career"!