Environmental awareness is no doubt a hot topic, and one that we all have a stake in. Jobs in this field promise excellent growth over the next 10 years. Because of the explosion of interest in all things green over the last decade, unique “green-collar” jobs are starting to become part of the main stream. In January of this year, the Obama Administration awarded $2.3 billion for the Recovery Act Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credits for clean energy manufacturing projects across the United States. The White House press release stated that it will lead to “183 projects in 43 states…tens of thousands of high quality clean energy jobs and the domestic manufacturing of advanced clean energy technologies including solar, wind and efficiency and energy management technologies.” Regardless of your political perspective, there is no denying that the “green” industry is poised to produce a substantial number of jobs over the next decade and beyond.
THE FACTS ON GREEN JOBS
The Pew Charitable Trusts stated in a 2009 report that “clean energy economy jobs” grew by 9.1% between 1998 and 2007, compared to a growth of 3.7% for all jobs, a fact that points to the sustainability of an industry that is all about… well… sustainability.
As further support, the number of job postings including the term “green” on Indeed.com, which searches thousands of job sites, has grown 120% since 2005. And job postings with the term “environmental” have grown more than 50%. This shows a clear rise in interest in this industry.
What’s more, on CNN Money’s list of the “100 Best Jobs in America” (in terms of pay, growth and quality of life), environmental engineering ranked #5 with a projected growth of 31% over the next 10 years. This is a great example of a “green collar” job.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics, our go-to source for job trends, received funding this year to collect data on green jobs, which shows the growing presence of the industry. The BLS is still compiling all of the statistics and profiling for the field, but the information on careers in wind energy is now up.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics breaks green jobs down into two categories: positions in which workers create green goods or provide green services and positions where employees are there to make their company more environmentally friendly. Here are some great options in both categories:
- Sustainability coordinators
- Carbon brokers
- Environmental educators
- Eco tour guides
- Urban/land-use planner
- Environmental Engineer
- Interface designer
- Interior/exterior designer (LEED standards)
- Construction of solar thermal plants
- Solar panel installer
- Wind turbine fabricator
Here are some green-only job boards and resources:
The credentials for green jobs are still being developed and debated, but familiarize yourself with the various certifications and requirements that currently exist. Not all green jobs require them, but they could set you apart.
Key green credentials:
- USGBC LEED Certifications
- BPI Individual Building Certification
- NABCEP Solar Thermal Installation Certification
- RESNET Certified Energy Auditor or Rater
- AEE Energy Certifications
- Green Advantage Certified Practitioners
If green is your color, consider going green in your job search for a stable, rewarding career. Why not help the environment while making a good living?
Dr. Woody is author of The YOU Plan and is an executive coach trained in organizational psychology.
The next industry my team decided to cover for the “Where are the jobs?!?” series is healthcare. It probably doesn’t surprise you that it is on our list of booming fields, as the need for healthcare is rapidly rising with the aging baby boomers entering their retirement years. Even with the uncertainty of healthcare reform there is still projected growth in many healthcare occupations.
Many find careers in healthcare rewarding and take great pride in helping others make their way through tough physical and mental challenges. It also doesn’t hurt that the healthcare profession has some of the highest-paying positions in the country, even when you factor out those that require medical degrees! Of the jobs on CNN Money’s “20 Highest-Paying Jobs” list, almost half are in healthcare.
THE FACTS ABOUT HEALTHCARE JOBS
According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook wage and salary employment will increase in the healthcare industry by 22 percent between 2008 and 2018, which is substantially greater than the projected 11 percent growth for all other industries combined. More specifically, the BLS projects employment growth of 41 percent in home health care services, 39 percent for outpatient care, and 21 percent for nursing during the next decade. To amplify matters, a 2009 article in Health Affairs by Dr. Peter Buerhaus and company found that even in the face of the Great Recession the nursing shortage in this country is projected to grow to 260,000 registered nurses by 2025. This is a strong signal that there is definitely high earning potential here!
The following is a list of some of the hottest healthcare positions out there:
- Patient advocates
- Health informatics technician
- Physical therapy assistants
- X-ray technician
- Fitness nursing (similar to dietician)
- Holistic nursing
- Gerontological nursing
- Medical and public health social worker
- Lab technician
- Dental hygienist
- Occupational therapist
Where can you go to find these positions? Here are some options:
- HR page of hospital websites and other similar facilities
- Nursing Jobs
- Health Career Web
- Monster.com (Healthcare)
- Career Builder (Healthcare)
- Healthcare Jobsite
GET OUT OF THE HOT SEAT
After researching this industry, there is no doubt some potential for solid career paths here. So if you’re in a rut and have the urge to go back to school or get a certification, it’s never too late in the name of job security. But if school isn’t an option, they have lots of administrative jobs that range from human resources to billing and even jobs in maintenance. Growth in the healthcare industry is going to require a lot of non-health related jobs because these are complex operations which will require a lot of support. Definitely keep your eyes open for opportunities in healthcare!
Michael “Dr. Woody” Woodward, PhD is a CEC certified professional coach who holds a PhD in organizational psychology. Dr. Woody is founder of the consulting firm HCI and author of the new book: The YOU Plan: A 5-step Guide to Taking Charge of Your Career in the New Economy.
One of the commonly missed steps in the career re-engagement process is introspection. I’m a firm believer in the power of stepping back to gain perspective on where you are presently, where you are actually going, and where you really want to go. As part of this introspective process I firmly believe you need to take stock in what you bring to the table. In other words, you have to get to know your intrinsics.
As I mentioned in my previous blog, I use the word intrinsics as a catch-all to describe what you bring to the table as a unique individual. We all have our own mix of personality, experiences, training… that combine to create a unique value proposition in terms of what we are able to bring to bear in our career endeavors.
In my last blog post I also outlined the six elements that make-up what I refer to as your career intrinsics. I call these six elements your career pacers: Personality, affiliations, contributions, experience, relationships, and SKAs.
In this post I’m going to focus on personality.
Although there are many influences on human behavior, I believe that personality is one of the most significant. Other influences include experience, culture, upbringing, education, religion, social norms, expectations, and trauma. The reason I believe personality is so critical is that your personality is really responsible for driving how you respond to those other influences. It shapes how you act and interact within your environment.
Personality is really about your natural inclinations. We all have natural leanings and comfort zones. Quite simply, you have certain actions and activities that you tend to be comfortable performing. Having a good sense of what these are is critical to your success. The last thing you want to do is put yourself in a position that requires you to spend most of your time operating outside of your comfort zone. When you are in your element, you are going to be at your best.
In my upcoming book, The YOU Plan, I talk about the role of personality in my work as an executive coach:
“Whether I’m working with corporate executives or personal clients, I always begin by assessing their personality and natural strengths. I’m certainly not unique in this approach. The study of personality and its application to the world of work has enjoyed a substantial resurgence, with many theories and approaches. What’s important is this: Personality does matter.”
When it comes to assessing personality, there are literally thousands of personality assessments on the market. The unfortunate reality is that the majority of these assessments likely provide as much intellectual insight as reading your daily horoscope or taking the latest quiz in Cosmopolitan magazine. So, when looking for a good assessment, consider the source. Simple on-line assessments can sometimes do more harm then good.
One of the most well researched models of personality is the Big Five. The Big Five consists of five high-level factors that can be remembered as OCEAN: Openness to experience, Conscientiousness, Extraversion/introversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism or emotional stability. The model states that we all have varying levels of each factor that operate together to create our individual personalities. The model has gained such wide acceptance that even the psychologists at e-Harmony use it as part of the matching system. Thus, when looking for simple personality assessments, keep the big five in mind.
For more information on the Big Five and one of the more popular Big Five assessments see: http://www3.parinc.com/products/product.aspx?Productid=NEO_FFI
Some other well-known models include:
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator: https://www.cpp.com/products/mbti/index.aspx
Both have enjoyed a tremendous amount of popularity and use in the business world.
The bottom line is that career success requires really knowing the value you bring to the table and how to leverage and communicate that value in a way that helps others want to utilize it. Really knowing your personality is a good start.
Over the next couple of weeks I will address each of the other career PACERS in more depth, so stay tuned!
To find out more about Dr Woody’s upcoming book, The YOU Plan, check out www.TheYouPlan.com
In my January 11 blog post I spoke about the importance of introspection in the career planning process. I focused on how assessing your values can play a role in the career choices you make. The next step in the introspective process is examining your intrinsics.
I use the word intrinsics as a catch-all to describe what you bring to the table as a unique individual. We all have our own mix of personality, experiences, training… that combine to create a unique value proposition in terms of what we are able to accomplish in the marketplace. Spending the time to really understand your intrinsics is a critical component to successful career planning.
In my upcoming book, The YOU Plan, I describe intrinsics in the following way:
“Think of your intrinsics as a deck of cards. All of our lives are shuffled differently, which means our cards are all spread across our life decks in very different ways. Some of your cards are close to the top and readily accessible whereas others are buried somewhere near the bottom and haven’t been played in a while.”
In other words, your intrinsics are that which you have within you that can be leveraged for value by potential customers, partners, or employers. However, in order for others to be able to see the value you bring to the table, you have to be able to articulate it in a way that is meaningful. Having a good handle on your intrinsics is an important part of career planning, particularly in a tough economic environment.
For the sake of simplicity, I have broken intrinsics down into six factors. I believe these six factors impact the pace of your career development, thus I refer to them as your career PACERS.
• Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities (KSAs)
Career success requires really knowing the value you bring to the table and how to leverage and communicate that value in a way that helps others want to utilize it.
Over the next couple of weeks I will address each of the career PACERS in more depth, touching on how to really identify and leverage them. So, be sure to stay tuned!
To find out more about Dr Woody’s upcoming book, The YOU Plan, check out www.TheYouPlan.com
As I mentioned in my last blog post, any good career plan starts with introspection. You have to know yourself, before you can effectively pick a direction, market yourself, and get back on track. As a coach trained in the field of organizational psychology, I am a big believer in introspection as a starting point. All too often, I come across transitioning professionals who have jumped out ahead of themselves only to outrun their coverage. If you want to stand out from the herd, you are going to have to be thoughtful and deliberate in your actions. This requires knowing yourself first.
When it comes to knowing yourself, you have to start with values. The values you espouse are vital to the choices you make and ultimately dictate the way you live. Values can be thought of as the principals you hold near and dear. Your values are the code you live by. They are the rules you follow and the ethics you adhere to when dealing with others.
The following is an excerpt from my upcoming book The YOU Plan:
“Who you are drives how you work, play, live, and ultimately shine. Your experiences, upbringing, and culture have acted to shape the person you have become and the values you espouse. The values you espouse ultimately influence the decisions you make and the path you choose to follow. Your values are the lens you view the world through… There is no doubt that our personal values play a critical role in the choices we make and the careers we pursue. Yet, the unfortunate reality is that most of us can’t articulate our values. Often this leads us to making bad decisions. These bad decisions tend to land us on career paths that aren’t truly fulfilling and sometimes, even toxic.”
When resetting your career focus and re-engaging in your career journey, you have to be mindful of how your values play into your decisions. Every organization has its own unique culture driven by a set of core values. It’s up to you to understand what these values are and determine how well they match with yours. However, before you can do this you must be sure to have a good handle on your values.
So, how do you assess your values? Doing a quick web search for values checklists will provide a lot of results. The following are some on-line values assessments:
The key to using any adjective checklist effectively is taking the time to narrow down your values to your top five. This is a much tougher challenge than it seems because it requires making tough choices. Whenever I have taken groups through values exercises they always struggle with this, so take your time.
Regardless of the checklist you use, you really need to ask yourself if the values you chose are really yours. A good way to test whether or not you truly value something is to ask yourself the following questions:
• Are you willing to fight for it?
• Are you willing to sacrifice for it?
• Are you willing to pay for?
Any good career plan starts with introspection. A critical component to the introspective process is assessing values. Keep in mind, values are a major driver in decision making. We are in uncertain times and successfully navigating these times will require using your values as a compass. When it comes to stepping back and creating a YOU Plan, be sure to start with assessing your values.
To learn more about Dr. Woody’s upcoming book, The YOU Plan, go to www.TheYouPlan.com
We are entering a time of great uncertainty. Scare words like recession, downturn, crisis, and turmoil all evoke fear and pose challenge. With all of this uncertainty abound, it’s easy to fall prey to the trap of hopelessness and desperation. The purpose of this blog series is to help you cerate your own certaintly through planning! If you want to shine in 2009 it’s time to take control!
As an organizational psychologist, I believe there are three ways you can react to the challenge of uncertain times:
– you can cower and hide,
– you can buckle down and survive, or
– you can step-up and thrive
For those looking to step-up and thrive, it’s time to start planning. Planning begins with assessing your values, intrinsics, passions, and then leveraging your essence (brnad) and creating a roadmap. I like to refer to this as the VIPER approach to re-establishing your career in the new economy. So, look out for more information on the VIPER model in upcoming blogs!
Remember, if you want to shine in 2009, it’s time to step-up and start planning.
To see my Shine in ’09 speech go to www.DrWoody.com