What is my Career Passion – A Question Many Employees Ask

your careerBy Vitra Singh

Several years ago, I found myself crying in the bathroom at work – a first in my professional career. I knew that months of misery on the job had reached a point of no return. While I knew it wasn’t in the job of my dreams, I thought the experience, paycheck, and job title would all be worth it.

Quitting the job had been on my mind for months. But I really couldn’t justify doing something so irresponsible in my late 20s, could I? And, what would I do if I quit? Apply for an endless roster of jobs until I got one, and then go through the whole cycle all over again?

These were the questions that had plagued me job after job. They are questions many employees ask themselves daily. But I had reached my breaking point. Within three weeks I was out of there.

I wasn’t working another job, but the free time gave me the chance to remember who I am. I explored hobbies and took opportunities that came my way. During the time, a series of questions tugged at me.

I was experienced at having jobs I was not passionate about, but what about a career I could be passionate about? How do people find or discover what they love to do? Who are people out there I can talk to and learn from when it comes to loving a job?

Following a passion I hadn’t used in years, I met and interviewed dozens of people on the topic – those who were in jobs they hated, those who were living everyday loving their jobs, HR managers, career coaches, etc.

Of the many lessons I learned, there are a few that stick out. I still think about these nuggets of wisdom on a frequent basis, always relating them to where I am on my own journey:

Being stuck in a job you don’t enjoy is like wearing the wrong shoe – it just doesn’t fit:

I always picture myself walking around the city for an entire day with a shoe that’s one size too small and one inch too high. It’s uncomfortable at first, but then it becomes downright painful.

This quote can apply to any area of life: a job, relationship, financial decision, etc. It forces me to ask myself, “Is this me? Is this what will make me feel good?” It has helped me turn down jobs that just weren’t right and take opportunities that were scary, but exciting.


Build an entourage: 

An entourage is a circle of professionals who will support you, and for whom you are expected to support as well. It’s like networking, on a slightly more intense level. It’s about being consistent with getting out there, meeting people, connecting with them, and most importantly keeping in touch. Your entourage should be people who can help and defend you willingly.

To this day, I still feel uncertain when reaching out to people I met months ago. Sometimes those months turn into a year, and then two, and the connections are lost forever. To combat this, I’ve created a document in which I add the name of new people I meet. I then make a note of when I should follow up with them. Saying a quick hello or sending them an article of interest is always a way to break the ice on these emails.


Finding a career that provides a great deal of personal satisfaction is a life-long trip:

This tip came from a woman who started her undergraduate education at 36, completed her Ph.D. at 46, has a leadership development practice, and is an assistant professor at The Wharton School – so I’m inclined to believe her! Not only is she a determined and dedicated individual, she has proven herself in her field – truly inspiring!


Growing up, many assume they’ll go to college, select a field of study, and stick with it forever. It’s refreshing to have a professional say there is no right answer. If you end up loving your job right away, that’s wonderful. But if you don’t, there’s nothing wrong with you. You are not irresponsible, you are not clueless – you are, in fact, normal.


BIO:V itra Singh is the author of Living Life For Yourself, Not Your Job, a book featuring stories of professionals who left their jobs to find or pursue their career passion. Vitra wrote the book to inspire others to love what they do for a living. Follow her adventures at LaDolceVitra.com.

CareerAlley readers get a $3 discount off the original $12.99 here in paperback with the code HPB8ME5M at checkout. Also available for $4.99 in Kindle and Nook versions.

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5 Strategic Job Search Tips

To be unemployed is a distressing experience and is not what one would wish for anyone. If you are continuously failing in finding the right job, you have to understand that it’s not always about your eligibility and skills. One has to really plan while appearing for interviews and while searching for jobs. This post presents some useful strategies for effective job search.

Industries are getting competitive day-by-day and getting a lucrative job has become immensely difficult. Even if you possess the right skill set and education, you may not find an appropriate job. Today, it has all become about your attitude and confidence that you project, and the presence of mind you implement while searching for a job. Switching a job can be the most frustrating part as search for an apt job is very difficult. So, if you have been looking for jobs, you must consider your job search as one of the most significant work projects that you’ll ever undertake. For this, you need to be as committed, organized and professional as you are with your regular job.

Create a strategic overview of your entire job search plan and then you can keep a daily or weekly to-do list that outlines specific commitments about what you have to accomplish with your deadline for the task. Also jot down the important notes at the end.

You can also implement some below given practices to attain the desirable job.

Look Up

As per Duke University /CFO Magazine survey, about 33 percent CFO’s believe that hiring a person who is bit junior for a job opening can be quite effective. They believe that it is relatively easy to train and it also gives job seekers a great opportunity to get appointed on a position for which they possess good potential, if not all the skills and professional experience. Thus, while searching for jobs, not just apply for only those jobs where you believe you’ll fit in perfectly instead you need to broaden your search.

Showcase your growth potential

A majority of companies prefer hiring the people who show willingness for learning new skills and expand their industry knowledge with the changes happening around the world. Thus, if you are constant learner it’s better to spell out the ways you have been doing. For example, if you are a web developer and you have recently learned a new web development tool, add that to your professional resumes and profiles even if they are on social networking sites.

Target the growing companies

As per the Right management study, majorly there are two types of organizations – one those experience continuous growth and increased manpower requirement, the other types of companies are those that expect more sluggish staffing up. It’s always better to look for jobs in the companies which are hopeful, ambitious and growth oriented. While both types of companies may post jobs, the ones that are ambitious may hire quickly as compared to the others which may show slow progress even in the hiring process.

Wider and immediate networking

First of all, look out for people who are in your immediate network and work for the enterprises you would also like to work for, or who are doing the type of work that you also want to do. This way, you’ll be able to connect with like-minded and similar growth-oriented people. Once you develop a good network, tell them what you aspire for and ask them to look for job requirements in the companies where they are working. Sometimes, companies do not advertise the jobs and hire only through references. Organizing informational interviews with such people can also be a good idea.

Do not appear despondent and desperate

There are lot of people who want to help you but if you appear like some who is giving up the battle, your career advisers, peers and people in your network may doubt your employability and ability to grow in your job. Keep your job search ongoing and even if you are disappointed with the way your efforts are turning up, do not disclose your worries to the people. Maintaining a positive and pleasant demeanour can be little difficult under the taxing situation like being unemployed but your negative approach is also not going to help you. Always be mindful about how you appear in front of others.


Author Bio The author is a professional writer associated with an international job consultancy firm. She enjoys occasional blogging too. Mostly he shares her views on the jobs and Career in UAE and other Gulf countries. 

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6 Hot Jobs for Pilots Outside of the Standard Airlines

Six Jobs for Pilots Outside of the Standard AirlinesBeing a pilot sounds like a glamorous job, but at first glance it may also seem limiting. Can you get a job as a pilot doing anything other than flying with commercial airlines, or is that really the only career option out there? Fortunately for those looking to keep their options open, there are plenty of jobs for pilots besides a standard airline contract. Here are six things a licensed pilot could do if they were seeking an outside-the-box job.


1. Delivery Pilot

Some companies that have to ship physical items across the country fast rely on their own private pilots rather than outside delivery companies. You would be responsible for safely transporting their cargo from your location to anywhere it needs to go. No dealing with passengers — just the deliveries!

How Much They EarnHow much money does a UPS or Fed Ex pilot earn?

Delivery Pilot Jobs


2. Flight Instructor

If you like helping people and teaching, you may want to consider teaching others how to fly. There are many options available for this, such as giving private flight lessons on your own or being hired on as a teacher at a flight school.

How Much They Earn -Flight Instructor Salaries

Flight Instructor Jobs


3. Charter Planes for Tourists

This pilot job may involve a little bit more passenger-pilot interaction than most, depending on the size of the charter plane. Piloting aerial tours of local attractions can be a very profitable job, especially if you have your own small plane and don’t have to go through someone else.

How Much They EarnHow much does a charter pilot get paid?

Charter Plane Pilot Jobs


4. Private Business Planes

We hear about businessmen taking their private jets all over the world for international business meetings, so why not aim to work with them? Your work schedule may be more erratic, but you get to travel all over the place, so it’s a good trade. You can get a job flying JetSuite private jets for those who travel frequently.

How Much They EarnSalaries for Private Airplane Captains

Private Business Plane Pilot Jobs


5. Military

Being a military pilot is an extremely tough career, but knowing you’re protecting your country can also make it an incredibly rewarding one. If you have enough experience under your belt, you can apply for military pilot jobs, or you can go to an Air Force academy or military flight school to get the training you need. This is often a good option for those who don’t want to spend a lot of money on flight school, just remember the requirements to get into military flight school are quite strict.

How Much They Earn -How much do USAF fighter pilots make a year?


6. Emergency Medical Services

This is another career path where you would be actively helping people. You could be airlifting someone from one hospital to another, carrying rescue workers into natural disaster zones, or transporting someone from the scene of an accident to receive medical help.

How Much They EarnEMS Helicopter Pilot (Emergency Medical Service Helicopter Pilot) Salaries

Emergency Medical Services Pilot Jobs


With air travel becoming more common and affordable for private individuals, the possibilities for piloting jobs just keep growing. You can pursue that dream, confident that you’ll always have options when it comes to where you want to work.

Author Bio: Kandace Heller is a freelance writer in Orlando, Florida. She studied Communications at the University of Florida and loves to read and write.
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The Best Jobs that Only Require an Associate Degree

Associate Degrees
Source: DegreeQuery.com

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4 Jobs For Active People – Working With Your Hands

rangerFor those that love the outdoors or working with your hands, there are plenty of career options for you. Some require talent, but all are interesting careers. Maybe these jobs were not on the top of you list when you were growing up, but these jobs can be great alternatives to the typical “9 to 5″ office job. Take a look.

Bicycle Courier:

  • What They Do – Bicycle couriers carry packages on short trips that would prove impractical for multi-day delivery services. Often performing assignments in a relatively small geographic area, like a city or neighborhood, bicycle couriers deliver food, documents, and other products people need. Not only is the job a great way to stay in shape, but it allows you to pick up some tips from thankful clients along the way.
    How Much They Make – Not a lot of info on what you can earn, but this article might help – Upside: Owns the Street. Downside: Car Doors.


Landscape Designer:

  • What They DoLandscape designers help customize people’s lawns. This job allows you to work outdoors on your hands and knees. Unlike other types of manual labor though, this job gives you the chance to inject your creative passions into your work. Landscape designers are responsible for creating beautiful landscape layouts, with touches like well placed plants. Landscape designers are often responsible for the shrub sculptures you might have seen
  • How Much They MakeLandscape Architects
  • Finding a jobLandscape Designer Jobs



  • What They Do –Have you ever wondered how cities become dotted in beautiful murals? Muralists these days make their money in many creative ways; one popular specialization is graffiti muralists. These muralists replace gang graffiti with positive murals. This helps to not only beautify a tagged building, but also reduces the likelihood the building will be tagged again. One of the best parts of being a muralist, besides taking part in a physically active job, is seeing your creations become relatively permanent parts of the city-scape. You can help supplement your desire for art with a UF art education degree online. More knowledge about art will only help your murals stand out and be even more amazing.
  • How Much They MakeThe Business of Home Murals


Forest Ranger

  • Forest Rangers specialize in forest preservation. As a forest ranger, you’ll guard the woods from poachers, help maintain trails, and clear away brush that could cause forest fires. The best part of this job is how much time you get to spend out in the woods. If you’re looking for a job that let’s you revel in the great outdoors and work at your own pace, think about becoming a forest ranger.
  • How Much They MakeThe Average Income for a Park Ranger

These jobs are just a small sample of the suite of options available for those who love active work. If you’re looking for a position that gives you the freedom to move around and enjoy your life, use this list as a starting place to find the jobs you most want.

Tricia is a mom and a blogger from Beverly Hills. She loves hiking and her family. There’s not much more to her than that!

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Career Paths – Choosing between Trade School and Traditional University

Depositphotos_3388278_xsBy Katherine Gredley

Deciding a career path is difficult, and not the least among the necessary decisions is the education necessary to get the job you want. College is expensive, but it’s hard to know if a trade school is the better decision for you. Here are some considerations to make your decision easier.

You should consider traditional university if:

  • You’re not sure what career you want to pursue
  • You want a well-rounded and diverse education
  • Your desired career specifically requires a certain degree
  • You want your learning to focus on theories
  • You value knowledge more than just employability

You should consider trade school if:

  • You want a specific job that has a trade specific certification. Some careers like this are:
    • Beautician
    • Massage Therapist
    • Culinary Arts
    • Welder
    • Automotive Careers
    • Medical Assistant
    • Practical Nursing
    • You want a shorter education so that you can start work sooner
    • You want your learning to be practical training, rather than theory-based
    • You want to focus on learning the skills for your specific desired job
    • You’re more concerned with employability than general knowledge

Typically, vocation-specific schools are faster paced, more specific, and involve more hands-on training than traditional bachelor degree programs. Because they are shorter programs, they are often less expensive. They usually are very job-focused, providing career placement services for students, and honing the skills necessary for immediate employability.

Some jobs, however, absolutely require college degrees. Careers in research, education, and high-level business often require a lot of background knowledge in order to be successful. There are also traditional education opportunities that help offset the cost, such as local public schools, community colleges, scholarship programs, and grants. Traditional college does not have to be more expensive than trade school.

Ultimately, the best program for you will depend on your desired career path, as well as your learning style. Make sure you research the requirements for the field you want to enter, the cost for all your options, and talk with people who have gone through the programs you’re considering. Most schools can put you in contact with students and alumni.

Byline: by Kate Gredley

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5 More Hot Careers for 2014

jobs on fireFeeling like your job is a dead end?  Or maybe you are trying to figure out what your college major should be to position yourself for the best career. According to Purdue University, approximately 40% of college students change their major at least once (and some change their major several times). There are also a large number of people who are displaced every year when their industry declines (or disappears). Whatever your reason, today’s list of “Hot Careers” will help you decide where you should focus for a Hot Career.

  • Market Specialist -

    • What They Do – Marketing specialists help companies analyze out what sells best. They analyze market data, buying trends and gaps in the market. They also help determine price points on products. They analyze demographic data, look at competitors and help determine strategies around how best to market products.
    • How Much They Make – Background, experience and product specialties drives much of what determines compensation for this career.  Median pay is $60,000 per year and the job outlook is excellent according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Compensation analysis can be found on Glassdoor.com – Marketing Specialist Salaries
    • Education Requirements – A college degree is required and you should pick a university that has a degree program in marketing or market research. Math and analytical skills are key as well as understanding how to leverage computer and software related analysis/research tools. Internships while you are in college will also help.
    • Finding a Job – Job Search Links – Marketing Specialist
  • Financial Analyst -

    • What They Do – Financial analysts provide financial analysis and guidance to businesses and individuals making investment decisions. They assess the performance of stocks, bonds, and other types of investments. They also provide internal support for business financial review, analysis and forecasting. Financial Analysts can play many roles – Securities Analysts, Investment Analysts and Ratings Analysts. They typically work for all types of organizations, including financial institutions, investment banks, mutual funds, pension funds, hedge funds and securities firms.
    • How Much They Make -According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for Financial Analysts is $77,000. Financial Analyst salaries.
    • Education Requirements -You definitely need a college degree to become a financial analyst, preferably with a degree in Finance or Accounting. An MBA in Finance or Accounting is also a big plus. Another career option is to get accredited as a CFA or CPA.
    • Finding a Job -Job search links – Financial Analyst
  • Web Developer
    • What They Do – A web developer (also called web designers) is a programmer who specializes in the development of Internet applications and websites that are run over HTTP from a web server to a web browser. A developer generally builds a website from the bottom up, creating everything from the home page to site layout and function. A good developer will consider the client’s products or services along as well as the target market.
    • How Much They Make – According to Salary.com, web developer salaries can range anywhere from $50,000 to $160,000. This, of course, depends on the type of developer, years of experience and educational background. Web Developer Salaries
    • Education Requirements – According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, educational requirements for Web designers vary depending on the type of work they do. Requirements range from a high school diploma to a bachelor’s degree. Certifications are also important (specifics depend on background).
    • Finding a JobWeb Developer Jobs
  • Database Administrator
    • What They Do – According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Database Administrators (DBAs) “use specialized software to store and organize data, such as financial information and customer shipping records”. DBAs manage general databases and are generally the central source of database knowledge in their organization. They get involved or manage data modeling, database design, Metadata management and repository usage.
    • How Much They Make – According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Statistics, Database Administrators earn an average of $77,080 with a mean salary of $42,930. The job outlook is 15% growth in the next few years.
    • Education Requirements – According to About.com, Database Administrators generally have a BS in Computer Science or Management Information Systems (MIS). Similar to the web developer, database administrators will also hold certifications for a specific database software programs (see – Education Needed for Database Administrators)
    • Finding a JobDatabase Administrator Jobs
  • Public Relations Specialist
    • What They Do – Public Relations Specialists can play many roles. One role is to be responsible for the relationship between ad agencies and clients. They will also provid PR strategy, ideas, project management, and services to internal (if they work within a company) or external clients (if they work for a PR firm).  PR specialists also assist media relations, strategic planning and new business development.
    • How Much They Make – The median salary for a PR specialist is $45,000 while those in the top 10% can expect compensation well over $100,000. Average Salary Ranges for Public Relations jobs.
    • Education Requirements – A bachelor’s degree is typically needed to break into the public relations field. There are a few majors you can take for public relations, such as communications, marketing and, of course, public relations. Internships are also a good way to break into the field.
    • Finding a JobPublic relations jobs

Also take a look at:


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Resume Myths vs. Facts

Resume Myths vs Facts

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5 Career Options for those Interested in Criminology

Different Career Options for those Interested in CriminologyIf you want to work in a field related to criminology, you have quite a few options. There will always be laws, as well as people who break them. That creates many different job opportunities, some requiring more training and education than others. Here are some of your leading choices for a career involving laws, law enforcement or the justice system.


Police Officer

This may be the job most people think of first when it comes to law enforcement. Police officers are required to be in good physical condition and able to handle many different types of situations. While the specific requirements vary from city to city, the basic requirements for this job include a high school diploma and attending a police academy.



Attorneys or lawyers have the job of defending criminal cases or civil lawsuits. Attorneys may also be prosecutors and work for the government. Either way, this career requires a great deal of training. After completing a four year bachelor’s degree, you will need to attend law school and pass the Bar Examination. Lawyers may specialize in many different types of law, including corporate, criminal, financial, insurance and many others.



A paralegal career is appropriate for someone with an interest in the law who doesn’t have the desire to become an attorney or who wants to start a career more quickly. Paralegals assist attorneys in tasks such as doing research, communicating with clients, drafting legal documents and performing administrative tasks associated with the law practice. Paralegals must know quite a bit about the law and usually have a certificate or degree in paralegal studies.



Judges are at the top of the legal system’s hierarchy. Judges are responsible for interpreting laws, handing out sentences and deciding if cases should go to trial. There are many types of judges, including municipal court, appellate court and administrative laws judges. The requirements are specific to states, but judges must serve as attorneys for many years and then become elected to the office of judge.


Victim Advocate

A victim advocate is someone who provides victims of crimes with information, access to resources, emotional support and guidance for dealing with the legal system. They work with government agencies, social service agencies and other organizations that aid victims. While there are no formal requirements for this career, most victim advocates have college degrees in psychology, social work or criminal justice.

There are many different career paths open to those interested in criminology. Some require nothing more than a high school diploma, while others require an advanced degree. When considering a career path, you must consider your interests as well as the amount of training you’re willing to undergo.

Author Bio: Kandace Heller is a freelance writer in Orlando, Florida. She studied Communications at the University of Florida and loves to read and write.
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Is SEO in Your Career Path?

BrandSearch engine optimization, or SEO, is defined as getting the most number of visitors to a particular page or website. The best way to do this is by making that page or site show up at the top of popular search engines, such as Google or Yahoo.

Jobs in SEO are growing, and very quickly at that.

The number of SEO professionals on LinkedIn has jumped more than 110% in the past year alone, and it doesn’t seem to be diminishing anytime soon. The online world is taking over, and technology is more developed now than ever before.


Love of technology needed

To land a job in SEO, one thing’s for sure – you must love technology and be able to adapt to the constant changes that arise.

Most companies are going to want someone who’s experienced, which can be tough, because if all companies want experienced candidates, than how do you go about getting experience?

For one, start your own blog or website and learn how to grow it. Learn how to appropriately use keywords and links to grow a following and gain traffic. Network, socialize, know social media like the back of your hand and learn as much as you can about SEO. Learn HTML, coding and link building. Become an expert of your own website and use that as an example to companies when explaining how you plan on growing their traffic and increasing their business.

Be willing to take an unpaid internship. This rings especially true if you do not have experience professionally with SEO. If working unpaid isn’t an option, consider asking to work from home part-time for a limited amount of time in order to show the company what you can do. This allows you to take on paid side jobs in the meantime.

Learn from others who have more experience. A career in anything is bound to change, but one in SEO will most likely change multiple times throughout the course of a year. Connect with professionals who have mastered the art of SEO and learn from them. Ask questions, pick their brains and never stop learning. The career is ever-changing, and you need to be willing to adapt.

Be willing to go above and beyond what’s expected. In SEO, doing ‘just enough’ may be enough to get you by, but it won’t get you far in the long run. Don’t only meet the needs of your clients, exceed them. Challenge yourself with each new project to exceed the results of your last project. It will be more time-consuming, but it’s a guaranteed way to make you an expert in SEO.


How much money can you make?

The amount of money one can make with a career in SEO is almost limitless.

If you work in-house, you’ll be paid a salary. Entry-level positions may start around $40,000 a year and senior positions could pay as much as $100,000+ per year.

Salary, of course, will depend on where you live, what company you work for, how much experience you have, and so on and so forth.

If you work as a freelancer, or contractor, your salary is really up to you.

To make the most, you’ll want to dabble in multiple areas – take on large and small projects for various companies, possibly hold down a part-time job with a larger firm, and run a few of your own successful websites.

The beauty of freelancing is you can set your own schedule, take time off as you please and work from home. The harder you’re willing to work, the more money you’ll be able to make.


The need for experts in SEO is continually growing.

If you think you have what it takes, learn everything there is to know about SEO and develop your own website (or two).

It may take a while to get off the ground, but SEO is a career path that’s not going away anytime soon and will be worth it in the end.

About the Author: Sarah Brooks is a freelance writer living in Glendale, AZ with her husband and daughters. She writes on how to get a computer degree online, personal finance and travel.

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