While the economy is showing signs of recovery, indications that the recovery will continue to be "jobless" casts a pall over hopes for a full bounceback. Job Action Day (see JobActionDay.com), the second annual event spearheaded by Quintessential Careers, addresses the jobless recovery by spotlighting promising areas in which the unemployed and other job-seekers may find opportunities.
"The idea is that job-seekers can take plenty of action steps right now - today - to move forward in their careers, even if they're unemployed and have been for some time," said Quintessential Careers Founder and Publisher Dr. Randall S. Hansen. "We established Job Action Day last year as a day for job-seekers pummeled by the economic meltdown to take control of their careers and initiate action," Hansen said. "Where last year shock, fear, and paralysis may have inhibited action, this year, the gloom of prolonged unemployment may be de-motivating job-seekers."
But Hansen underscores his belief that job-seekers can take action today in his Job Action Day article, 10 Things (Activities) You Can Do Today for Your Job Search (http://www.quintcareers.com/job-search_activities.html).
Quintessential Careers and a cadre of Job Action Day writers and bloggers have targeted several areas as offering bright spots of opportunity:
-- Federal Jobs: The federal government plans to fill 293,000 mission-critical jobs over the next five years, reports Barbara Safani on her CareerSolvers blog, citing a presentation by Barbara Adams, president of CareerPro Global Inc. The Obama administration will expand the number of civilians in the executive branch by 140,000 to reach a total of 2 million, the highest number since President Clinton took office in 1992. The federal government is the only national employer that will continue to fill jobs regardless of economic conditions, and because more than 40 percent of the 1.5 million federal employees will retire in the next five years (totaling 300,000 jobs, writes Nancy F. Smith on CBS MoneyWatch), turnover will create additional opportunities. Job-seekers can learn about the complex federal application process in a Job Action Day article by Diane Hudson Burns, A Crash Course in How to Apply for Federal Employment (http://www.quintcareers.com/federal_government_jobs.html).
-- Green/Clean Energy Jobs: Adams also reports that the Obama administration is creating 5 million new green jobs through its stimulus plan, Safani writes. Smith notes that the stimulus is pumping $50 billion into “projects as diverse as mass transit, modernizing the electric power grid, and weathering government buildings.” In her Job Action Day article, It's Green at the Top and at the Bottom: A Brief Comparison of Green-related Skills Needs from the Senior-Executive Level to the Entry Level (http://www.quintcareers.com/green_career_skills.html), Chandlee Bryan looks at in-demand skills that can translate to green jobs, while Nancy Miller's sidebar, Green Jobs and Green Careers Embrace Many Possibilities (http://www.quintcareers.com/green_jobs_careers.html), characterizes ways to be green in the workplace.
-- Stimulus Jobs: In addition to the federal government's role in boosting federal and green/clean-energy jobs, stimulus money is targeting jobs in healthcare and the natural sciences. Smith reports that the healthcare industry is adding jobs at a rate of 17,000 monthly, and stimulus money "will flow into science and research projects as well as into support for local Medicaid expenditures, children's health programs, and health-insurance premiums for laid-off workers." In the natural-sciences arena, Smith notes that "research institutions will see more funding than they've had over the past five years combined." In her Job Action Day article, Quintessential Careers regular contributor Maureen Crawford Hentz provides a comprehensive primer on researching and applying for jobs created by stimulus money, Getting a Job in a Down - But Stimulated - Economy (http://www.quintcareers.com/stimulus_jobs.html).
-- Entrepreneurship and career-reinvention opportunities motivated by unemployment: One of the brightest spots is the ingenuity and innovation that many unemployed workers have applied to solopreneur, small-business, and freelance opportunities. "When we put out a call for folks who had lost their jobs in this recession but found new opportunity," Hansen says, "we received an outpouring of stories from people who successfully turned their unemployment into everything from mystery-novel-writing to puppet-show creation." Hansen reports that Quint Careers heard from inventors, green-business founders, authors, eBay merchants, a food purveyor, a professional organizer, a motivational speaker, a virtual worker, and more - all of whom had lost their jobs in the last year or so. In many cases, job loss turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to these folks, Hansen says, because it enabled them to reinvent themselves and pursue their true passions. Many of these stories appear in Job Action Day entries on the Quintessential Careers family of blogs, including the Quintessential Careers Blog, Career Doctor Blog, Quintessential Resume and Cover Letter Tips Blog, and A Storied Career.
In her Job Action Day article Turn Unemployment into Self-Employment: 5 Tips on How to Start (http://www.quintcareers.com/unemployment_self-employment.html), author Suzanne Caplan outlines variations on entrepreneurial pursuits, while Teena Rose discusses pockets of entrepreneurial opportunity in her sidebar, Economic Downturn Can Give Birth to Innovation and Entrepreneurship (http://www.quintcareers.com/innovation_entrepreneurship.html). Randi Bussin guides prospective career reinventors to discover what kinds of opportunities best suit them in her Job Action Day article, In a Down Economy, Maybe Career Reinvention Is in the Cards (http://www.quintcareers.com/career_reinvention.html)