Biz Bits: Steps to take when considering a career change

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Tip of the Week

Is this the right time for you to follow your passion or to reinvent yourself and make a career change? If so, make sure you can put your finger on what you want, so that you can sell yourself to prospective employers. Carole Redden, director of career services at Brown Mackie College - Phoenix, offers career-change tips:

- Network with a mission. Networking is vital to reinventing yourself or making a career move, but according to Redden, it should be done strategically and often. "You cannot wait for the job of your dreams to come to you," says Redden. "There are people who attend networking events and do not maximize the number of people they talk to, or do not ask the right questions. If you are looking for a job, you must have a plan."

- Examine your skills and resources. You don't have to be stuck in a job. Be proactive. Do a personal assessment and ask yourself: What background, skills and experience can I offer an employer? "If you've been in a job for 20 years, ask yourself, 'What do I really want to do for a living?'" says Redden. "Make some changes and some tough decisions. It may not be easy, but it's worth it. Job seeking takes patience."

- Update your credentials. Many jobs require additional education or training. Take classes at a local college, or a community or education center. Some nonprofit organizations offer free or low-cost training. If required, obtain certification for your chosen field. "Once you have a developed your 'brand,' you've got to make yourself more marketable than the next person," says Redden.

- Volunteer with nonprofits. Use your weekends to volunteer. "This is an opportunity to support those nonprofits that could benefit from your experience," says Redden. With reinvention, you can still give back and offer to help those who are less fortunate. You will gain valuable work experience in your career of choice.

- ARA

BBB Watch

Summer is a popular time for weddings, but as brides prepare for their wedding day, the Better Business Bureau advises future brides to proceed with caution when making arrangements.

"As weddings become more costly, it's important to review that your money is being spent with a trustworthy and reputable business," said Steve J. Bernas of the Better Business Bureau. "Before securing your wedding services and paying any upfront fees, it's important for couples to do their research.”

The BBB recommends that newlyweds consider the following when planning for their special day:

- Research all vendors.  

- Review all terms and conditions.  

- Keep documentation of your order.

- Pay with a credit card.

- Consider purchasing wedding insurance.  

For more information, visit www.bbb.org.

The List

According to a report on Forbes, here are the most powerful female authors:

- J.K. Rowling

- Danielle Steel

- Toni Morrison

- Stephenie Meyer

- Mary Higgins Clark

- Maya Angelou

- Alice Walker

- Jhumpa Lahiri

- Joyce Carol Oates

- Isabel Allende

Number to Know

110,000: Number of jobs that state and local governments will lose in the third quarter, according to IHS Global Insight.

Tech Talk

Microsoft recently announced that its popular Xbox 360 console will be able to stream live TV. The company also announced that a new “Halo” game is coming to the Xbox.

GateHouse News Service