Archive for October, 2009

Working Strategies: To get ahead, you need to plan ahead

November is Career Development Month. With so many job seekers losing unemployment benefits this fall, now is a good time to review the principles of career development and job search, particularly for those in transition from one field to another.

The five columns in this series will cover the fundamentals of developing a career plan, choosing a job target, building skills, revising your résumé and conducting a job search outreach.

Working Strategies by Amy Lindgren

Working Strategies by Amy Lindgren

Did you choose your career and build steps to achieve it, or did you tumble into it backward? Some days I don’t know what the word career means. But there is a point inherent in the concept that I think is important: Planning.

Whether it is at the onset or later in the process, one must engage in planning in order to build a career. Dumb luck and hard work will carry you only so far.

In the old days, a career plan meant something like this: Go to school, get trained, work your way up in a company, retire. This …

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Tough time for small business owners

By Laura Raines, for the AJC

We know the recession has not been kind to big business. We’ve read about the layoffs, bankruptcies and plant closures. “It’s not been good for small business either,” said Karen E. Ervin, inspirational speaker, author and founder of Entrepreneur Enterprises, which offers online courses to help entrepreneurs plan and start a business. “People are working harder than they were last year, struggling to meet payroll or taxes and watching as their colleagues’ businesses fold up.”

Karen E. Ervin

Karen E. Ervin is the founder of Entrepreneur Enterprises and an author and inspirational speaker. Ervin has advice for small business owners on navigating the recession. Photo by Leita Cowart, for the AJC.

As the area director of Kennesaw State University’s Small Business Development Center, Lydia Jones sees the toll of the economy daily. “There’s so much stress out there,” she said. “Money is tighter. Lines of credit have been decreased or been wiped out and gaining …

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Unemployment – a look ahead

By Chandra Fox, BlogBreak contributor and e-resume.net vice president.

Nobody knows how long the current economy and unemployment numbers will be in place. There have been predictions of unemployment as it is until 2014 due to the automobile industry and housing market in a tailspin. So what do you do if you need a job? The best way to find a job is to use your contacts. 60% of jobs are found by networking. So don’t be shy. Talk to those around you about employment opportunities.

Look at the job you have now and picture it in 5 years, 10 years and so on.

Then think of other jobs that are expected to flourish in the future. Where are you? Now don’t quit your job and go for another job just yet, just be thinking of your future and industries that look optimistic.

There are a few industries that are looking strong in the future. One is healthcare simply because the baby boomers – just the sheer number of this population have secured this industry. Computers and …

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Working Strategies: A guide to pursuing nonprofit ambitions

Of all the conversations I’ve had with people about choosing a career path, those who seem the most sheepish are the ones drawn to nonprofits. There’s something about the frank admission that you want to help others or that salary isn’t your primary motivator that makes people feel like they aren’t measuring up when they’re at the career counselor’s office.

Working Strategies by Amy Lindgren

Working Strategies by Amy Lindgren

But change is in the air. There’s some combination of our current domestic and global problems, paired with the grass-roots activation of citizens in our recent presidential campaign, that is creating a renewed sense of interest in nonprofit careers. I believe the recession is a driver as well. There’s nothing like being kicked out of a job you didn’t like anyway to help focus one’s attention on more rewarding work.

Shelly Cryer, author of “The Nonprofit Career Guide: How to Land a Job That Makes a Difference” (Fieldstone Alliance, 2008, $18.95), has this to say:

“If you’re considering …

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Now is the right time to develop talent

Laura Raines, for the AJC

It’s a familiar cycle to corporate educators and trainers. In good times, companies often expand their corporate learning programs. In belt-tightening times, training is usually the first thing to go.

“The demand for corporate training has dropped dramatically in the last 18 months,” said Kim Groves, marketing director for continuing education at Kennesaw State University, which offers professional management courses and customized programs for individuals and organizations. But she knows that when companies can fund it, business will pick up.

“Most companies realize that not developing their talent isn’t good for the long-term health of the organization,” she said. “Education is power.”

Tough times are when companies should maximize their employee training, said Gary Cruze, a senior instructor with Emory Corporate Learning.

“People like to be developed, and companies that provide those opportunities generally find their employees are …

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PULSE: November 2009 edition

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PULSE: Editor’s Notes

Thanksgiving
 is the time to count our blessings. This month, I’ve been listening to your responses as many of you graciously answered the question, “What makes you thankful to be a nurse?”

Who knew this topic would quickly exceed the limits of a Pulse article? We could have published a book of answers.

Editor's Notes by Pulse editor Laura Raines.

Editor’s Notes by Pulse editor Laura Raines.

When I talked to nurse Rose Pope, she asked for more time to think about it. Before I could answer, she said, “No, I think I can answer now.” About 20 minutes later, she was still coming up with reasons that touched on career fulfillment, respect, challenges, job security, pride in her workplace and co-workers, and the opportunity to learn and grow.

Imagine what she would have said if I’d given her more time to think about it.

Retired nurse Betty Daniels was thankful to still be “on the job,” giving advice to fellow residents in her retirement home. Gail Gibbs wrote about the joys of returning to the field after a long absence …

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Pulse: Nurses have many reasons to be thankful

By Laura Raines, 
Pulse editor

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we asked some Georgia nurses what made them thankful for their profession. As you can imagine, we got a cornucopia of answers — no two alike. We’d be willing to bet that you could add to the list.

Marcia Bishop (left) and Kelly McDonald are members of the Angel II Neonatal Transport team.  Photo by Barry Williams, AJC Special.

Marcia Bishop (left) and Kelly McDonald are members of the Angel II Neonatal Transport team. Photo by Barry Williams, AJC Special.

“In obstetrics, I loved being the first one to hold a newborn baby, and in other situations, I’ve been the last person to touch a dying patient and his grieving family. I’m thankful for the lives I’ve touched and the people I’ve helped.” – Barbara R. Johnson, MSN, MBA, RN, Manager of Clinical Education, Kaiser Permanente of Georgia. Age: 60 (34 years as a nurse).

***

“I’ve been fascinated with babies since my sister had her first child when I was six, so neonatal nursing is the perfect job for me. But I’m also thankful that nursing allowed me to take care of my parents at the end …

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PULSE: Just the facts on the H1N1 virus

By Laura Raines
, Pulse editor

“Georgia is overachieving when it comes to the H1N1 virus — and that’s not a good thing. It’s truly a pandemic here, because of the widespread outbreaks,” said Dr. Rhonda Medows, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH).

Dr. Rhonda Medows, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Community Health, calls the outbreak of the H1N1 virus a “pandemic.” Behind her is a projected image of the virus. Photo by Barry Williams AJC Special.

Dr. Rhonda Medows, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Community Health, calls the outbreak of the H1N1 virus a “pandemic.” Behind her is a projected image of the virus. Photo by Barry Williams AJC Special.

This year, Georgia’s flu season started at the beginning of the school year instead of its normal October time frame. Because the H1N1 virus is a new mutation, nobody is immune to it, so it’s transmitted much faster than normal flu strains.

“Most of our schools started on Aug. 10,” Medows said. “By the first week, we were starting to see absenteeism of students with flu-like symptoms, and by the second and third weeks, the percentages were really starting to pick up.”

Many schools in Georgia …

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PULSE: Portrait of a nursing family

By Laura Raines
, Pulse editor

He was from South Dakota. She was raised in Atlanta. They met in 1997 at the University of Alabama Hospital in Birmingham, where she was a trauma nurse and he was a nurse in the open heart intensive care unit.

Nurses Shalice and Chad Pickering have their hands full with Gracie and Matthew.  Photo by Barry Williams,  AJC Special.

Nurses Shalice and Chad Pickering have their hands full with Gracie and Matthew. Photo by Barry Williams, AJC Special.

Today, they’re married and the proud parents of 18-month-old twins. Like any two-career couple, they’re struggling with achieving a good work/life balance.

Chad Pickering knew there was a good possibility he would marry a nurse.

“Working with so many young women at the hospital, there seemed to be a high likelihood of it happening. It didn’t matter to me either way, but when I met Shalice, I knew,” he said.

The two started dating in 1997.

“It was actually nice that we understood what each other went through in a day. We became best friends,” Shalice Nicholson Pickering said.

“It’s good to have someone to share …

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