Questions and Answers with Career Expert Dr. Kristin Cardinale
Please note: On a somewhat infrequent basis, Quintessential Careers asks noted career experts five questions related to their expertise and publishes the interview in the current issue of QuintZine, our career e-newsletter. Those interviews are archived here for your convenience.
Dr. Kristin Cardinale is the author of The 9-to-5 Cure: Work on Your Own Terms and Reinvent Your Life. (See our review of the book.)
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||What do you feel are the most disturbing trends in job-hunting today?|
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|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||Can you briefly explain the concepts of a Patchworker and the Patchwork Principle — and how you came up with these concepts?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:|| The Patchwork Principle is an employment strategy that I think is revolutionary. The premise is doing a number of small jobs that you love instead of one 9-to-5 job so you can diversify and thrive. The standard model of work is based on total reliance on a single job that, as we are seeing in today’s economy, can suddenly be downsized, outsourced, or merged with another position on the company’s organizational chart. Sudden and total job loss is the risk you take when you’re a 9-to-5 employee. However, when you are a Patchworker you work for a number of organizations, a variety of bosses and if you choose to, you can do work along a number of very different avenues. This diversity insulates Patchworkers from total job loss because so many employers are in play. It also opens up a vast professional network when you interact with so many different decision-makers. And finally, it allows you to explore your interests and in many cases turn your hobbies into a career!
For example, if you have an opening in your regular patchwork schedule of small jobs and suddenly an opportunity comes along for you to try your hand at something that is of interest to you but wouldn’t appear to translate into a regular job (e.g., artist, gardener), then you can simply blend this job into your existing array of work assignments and feed your soul a little bit along the way. I used this approach with writing, performing small assignments alongside my thriving technology company, and now, lo and behold, I can both write and manage my business both in equal amounts by simply ramping up the writing gigs as new opportunities have come along.
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||From your observations and experience, just how tough is the job market today?|
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|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||How can job-seekers achieve success and stand out from the crowd in such a competitive market?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:||Flexibility and immediacy are key. Competitive candidates must be open to the changing needs of employers, including being immediately available for short, time-intensive assignments. Bringing these two attributes to the table can land freelancers a multitude of assignments in a hurry!|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||What do you feel is the most exciting or hopeful trend in job-hunting?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:||The boom of the freelance industry! More than 300,000 people started a career in freelancing in 2010. The number is expected to increase in 2011 as opportunities continue to increase in number. Work for a company in your hometown or halfway around the world — talk about endless possibilities!|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||What’s the single most important price of advice you can give someone who is considering following your advice and leaving their job for a Patchwork career?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:||Have a clear sense of what your priorities are before making the leap. This clarity helps keep you focused and lets you know when you have reached important milestones in your overall plan.|
Dr. Kristin Cardinale is author of The 9-to-5 Cure: Work on Your Own Terms and Reinvent Your Life. She is an optimist, columnist, career coach, consultant, technology instructor, adjunct college professor, seminar speaker, owner of a small technical-support business and a serial entrepreneur. She is living the life of her dreams, working on her own terms and thankful for her many blessings. She has lived, worked, studied and traveled to more than 20 countries in every corner of the globe and hopes to someday visit the last continent on her list, Antarctica. Follow her on Facebook, YouTube and iTunes, Twitter @WorkOnPurpose, or visit her Website.
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