Where are the Job Openings?

It has been a successful strategy for me over the years when helping clients obtain career information to explore the larger brush stroke of career paths and then from there, see where their background and skills plug in. I’d like to talk a bit about some of the trends happening in the career arena.

What we are seeing is an aging population of people. The largest demographic group in the United States is over the age of 55 and either retired or close to it. This population or group has stayed working the longest and have maintained their health. They are exploring and looking at what is next in their lives. Consider occupations offering services and products to them. What are their problems and challenges? Some specific career areas are in the arena of medial care, assisted living industry or services to help family members caring for loved ones at home, and social workers.

The second arena is that of medicine. As people live longer the accessibility and need for medicine increases. Many new treatments and medical advise that wasn’t available in the past in now available. We will continue to see advances in the pharmaceutical industry and all of the jobs that support them as well as physical and occupational therapies that help the aging population. I met this morning a women who does occupational therapy and she says she receives a job offer weekly because of the demand of her skills.

The third is that of the increase in costs of child care. Parents are demanding more options for childcare and a higher quality of caregiver who serves and supports their child. There has been an explosive growth of pre-kindergarten educational programs call for highly trained educators who command more competitive salaries than their predecessors. As a result, early childhood education has become a more lucrative and more stable profession than ever before.

In relation to this career management need has encouraged many parents to seek opportunities to work from home. Companies are outsourcing to people locally and allow more and more people to work from home and reduce their child care expenses.

Likewise, continual innovation and change assures technology workers that new machines, cables, and other equipment will have to be installed every few years. This means that new skills will be needed and technicians as well as IT professionals will be in even more demand.

The fourth area which is important to take into consideration as you are planning your career is the fact that work is being distributed in many locations allowing for people to work at 2-3 different work sites per day or per week. When I started coaching in 1990 it was unfamiliar to own and operate a virtual business with employees in 3 countries and 5 time zones. Now it is commonplace. The giant factories and smokestacks of a hundred years ago are fading away. Many of today's workers report for duty at smaller offices or manufacturing plants, connected by information networks like video and phone, and sophisticated file-sharing systems.

A growing number of employees, especially specialized consultants and leaders, divide their time among multiple locations at companies or client organizations. This trend has led to the use of "hot desking," where workers report to a different workstation at the start of each shift, instead of keeping their own desk or cubicle. Many workers telecommute, allowing them to reinvest time spent commuting into more productive work activities, personal focuses and achievements and/or family time.

The final area impacting career choices is that people are moving away from the bigger expensive cities into a more calm, peaceful and rural kinds of lifestyle. This generating of course the increase in construction, infrastructure development and services and products to serve the home based employee. How can you take what we are seeing as trends and move them into arenas that build your career path and direction?