Employment Blog

Career Change for a Lawyer

I’ve been an attorney for over 18 years and, earlier this year, for family reasons, I found I had to resign my partnership and relocate to Chicago. With that situation resolved, I am ready to find a challenging position, along with the opportunity to best employ my skill set and experience. I am open to other kinds of positions, however, my two main areas of experience lie in the fact that I was in Claims/Risk Management for 15 years, I’ve been an attorney for over 18.

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Professional Career Change

I have worked as an auditor/accountant for the past 10 years and I currently work for one of the Big Four firms. Within the last two years I have decided that I have no desire to continue on this path, although I am not completely sure where I would like to end up. My interest right now lies in Human Resources as a compensation analyst. I have no compensation experience but I do have experience in analyzing data and critical thinking. What is the best way for me to break into this field? I realize that I would most likely have to take a pay cut also and I'm okay with that as long as I'm rewarded appropriately.

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Returning to Work with New Career

I have a B.A. in Education, but permitted my certification to lapse. I am actually extremely interested in research and advocacy. I assisted several professors with research as an undergrad, which resulted in publication, yet haven't the foggiest idea as how to get my foot in the door, and potentially make a career out of my passion. While I did achieve a B.A.; school has actually always been quite a challenge for me. My youngest son has a learning disability, and I question, if I too, may have had, may still have, a learning disability. With that said, I'm reluctant to return to school. Are there any other opportunities; internships, trade schools, something for a woman in her late 40's.

Even though the job market is very tight, it is still very possible to make a career change. There are several ways to break into a new field. The good news is that you do not necessarily have to go back to school to do so!
Identify your skills.
First, it is important to take stock of your skills, especially your transferable skills. You must be able to talk about your skills to potential employers, especially if you do not have experience in a particular industry. Sometimes it is helpful to create a functional resume (instead of a chronological one) to begin to think of yourself in terms of skills rather than jobs. You can look up skill words on the Internet, or you can work with a career counselor to identify your skills.

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Starting a New Career

I am changing careers and having a hard time finding an entry level position. I am trying to get into web design and have some experience. I have been going on interviews for little over a year but have had no feedback from my interviews, and they don't even send an email to say they don't want me. Chicago.craigslist.org is a good resource for jobs and I also scan Monster, Careerbuilder  and any other leads. I am becoming frustrated and would like some advice.

Networking and more face to face and direct contact with possible employers can be helpful. So networking is always a consideration - and a stronger one than spending all your time perusing the internet sites.

However, you might also want to explore your interviewing techniques, your follow up techniques and other areas of your job search. I would recommend that you meet with a counselor or attend a seminar that can give you an opportunity to have a mock interview and get some real feedback.

Perhaps some informational interviewing would benefit your job search

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Finding Work in Difficult Economic Times

I am curious about the best approach to finding a position in this difficult economic times.
During a time of great competition you need to embark on a search that is focused, strategic and assertive. You must have a strong sense of your skills and value and be informed about the needs of the marketplace. If you need more education, get it! Target the types of companies that can benefit from your skill set and do your best to network into the company, check their website for openings and position yourself and your application in a way that makes you stand out. A good career counselor can help you navigate the difficult waters!

Good Luck!
The Career Experts @ ChicagoJobs.org

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7 Ways You May Be Sabotaging Job Interviews

You've heard the obvious job interview advice: don't be late, don't dress inappropriately, and don't curse your former employer. You've been around the block—you know this stuff.
What ELSE might be going wrong? Here a few things I've observed in my years of working with clients.

1) Being Cocky
They're good at what they do, they know it, and they communicate that they're somehow above the process. Some others don't prepare because "I'm really good at interviewing." Others underestimate what's coming and just wing it.
2) Not being able to articulate your skills
I've seen a lot of very accomplished people who can't articulate their skills, especially people who haven't had to look for work in a long time. Unless you can clearly articulate how you produce value, your chances of getting hired are close to nil.

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Americans with Disabilities (ADA) National Network Disability Law Handbook

August 2013 Newsletter, www.workforce3one.org
An updated version of the ADA National Network Disability Law Handbook is now available for free download on the Disability and Employment Community of Practice. The 110-page handbook, which is a great resource for staff in American Job Centers, is written in a practical “Frequently Asked Questions” format. It provides answers to common questions about the ADA, the ADA Amendments Act, the Rehabilitation Act, Social Security, the Air Carrier Access Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, the Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act, and the Fair Housing Act Amendments. It is published by the Southwest ADA Center, on behalf of The National Network of ADA Centers.

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Green Jobs

Thanks to funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, IDES now offers a new online career resource tool - Find Your Green Job. It provides a wealth of information on green industries, both in Illinois and nationwide.

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LinkedIn Summary: A missed opportunity

The LinkedIn summary is a truly different way of talking about and marketing yourself. Unfortunately, many people miss this opportunity. I see a lot of profiles which have no Summary at all.

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Job Interviews: Tell the Truth -- Intelligently

By Steve Frederick, Frederick Career Services

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