Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

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lendoman
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Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:57 pm

As in the title, I'm hoping that I can find some advice / encouragement / guidance from others here on the situation I find myself in now.

I'm 36 years old. I've run my own business as a sole proprietor for the last 10 years in a creative field (not programming). I did well for a while but after a sequence of bad decisions, changing fortunes and disruption of the industry, my income has declined significantly. Added to this, my wife has been notified that she will lose her job within the next 6 months.

For the first time since 2009, I think I'm going to need to look for a job. My current financial situation is ok, but not by any means retire early. We can survive for a year without working if we have to.

I have almost no idea whatsoever on what kind of job to begin looking for, or where. I'm embarrassed to ask our family for advice as they will be shocked after what they've previously seen of me. For now I really can't bring myself to.

If anyone can help me figure out what would be a good area to look into based on my profile, I would be very grateful...

Located in SoCal.

Education:
Bachelor's degree in physics from a UK university (maybe this complicates things, since it's not a US university)

Work experience:
2009-2019: started a creative business from scratch, best year profit was over $300k, has now declined significantly
2006-2009: full-time employment as a research / financial analyst, then consultant, then due diligence

Skills:
I'm sure everyone says it but excellent interpersonal skills, time management, initiative, teamwork, attention to detail
Excellent general computer skills: excel, word etc
High ability in mathematics, but also writing / comprehension / persuasion in English
Native English speaker, fluent in Spanish also

At this point, from just picking ideas wildly at random, the jobs that came to mind were:
Project Manager
Financial Analyst
Some kind of due diligence / researcher
Fraud investigator (because of natural interest in this plus some experience back in early career)

As you can probably tell, I'm not sure where to start with this. I'm not even sure what skills in myself I should be considering. Hopefully this can get me to start thinking in the right direction.

Thank you in advance!

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LadyGeek
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by LadyGeek » Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:08 pm

Welcome!

Based on the info provided, your business is still operational. Instead of looking for another job, have you considered selling your business? That would give you some extra working capital and time to figure things out.

You could also take on a partner to share the costs (and profits).
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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LilyFleur
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by LilyFleur » Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:16 pm

My newly graduated son just landed a job through Robert Half. That might be worth a look for you. My son was seeing plenty of analyst positions. He will be commuting about an hour in SoCal traffic to an LA office.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:58 pm

LadyGeek wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:08 pm
Welcome!

Based on the info provided, your business is still operational. Instead of looking for another job, have you considered selling your business? That would give you some extra working capital and time to figure things out.

You could also take on a partner to share the costs (and profits).
Thanks for the quick reply! It's true, the business is still operational and generates some income, but because of the area it's in it's very difficult to sell. Reasons are that the industry has changed dramatically over recent years and our set up is probably not that attractive. If we'd sold 1-2 years ago, that would have been quite different... On the plus side though, we do have time to figure out what to do as it will hopefully continue to give us about enough to live off for a while.

cochlearboy
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by cochlearboy » Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:11 pm

lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:57 pm
I've run my own business as a sole proprietor for the last 10 years in a creative field (not programming).
Can you give more details about your business? After all, you ran it for 10 years and this experience may help identify job opportunities that you could pursue. If you give more details, the folks on the board may be able to chime in with job suggestions that are related, even if only tangential, to whatever work you are doing.

You might be surprised by what jobs are available...

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:31 pm

cochlearboy wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:11 pm
lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:57 pm
I've run my own business as a sole proprietor for the last 10 years in a creative field (not programming).
Can you give more details about your business? After all, you ran it for 10 years and this experience may help identify job opportunities that you could pursue. If you give more details, the folks on the board may be able to chime in with job suggestions that are related, even if only tangential, to whatever work you are doing.

You might be surprised by what jobs are available...
Thank you for the reply. Sure, it's in the field of music composition, production and publishing. I have wondered about some sort of job that involves royalty accounting or similar, as I'm very familiar with that area and the terms and agencies involved.

cochlearboy
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by cochlearboy » Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:02 pm

lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:57 pm
Thank you for the reply. Sure, it's in the field of music composition, production and publishing. I have wondered about some sort of job that involves royalty accounting or similar, as I'm very familiar with that area and the terms and agencies involved.
I work in IP law, and I know folks doing that kind of work have been hit hard by lawsuits. That Marvin Gaye decision really spawned a lot of follow on lawsuits. Also, it would be hard for you to get a job involving writing royalty contracts without a JD.

This might sound naive, but is there a way for you to diversify your business (i.e., not focused on music) without incurring business expenses?

ivk5
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by ivk5 » Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:18 pm

lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:31 pm
cochlearboy wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:11 pm
lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:57 pm
I've run my own business as a sole proprietor for the last 10 years in a creative field (not programming).
Can you give more details about your business? After all, you ran it for 10 years and this experience may help identify job opportunities that you could pursue. If you give more details, the folks on the board may be able to chime in with job suggestions that are related, even if only tangential, to whatever work you are doing.

You might be surprised by what jobs are available...
Thank you for the reply. Sure, it's in the field of music composition, production and publishing. I have wondered about some sort of job that involves royalty accounting or similar, as I'm very familiar with that area and the terms and agencies involved.
Is there an opportunity to seek advice and/or network with peers in your industry or other adjacent music business areas (clients, suppliers/service providers, business partners, etc)?

What comes to mind is the old adage that when you go looking for a job, you get offered advice; when you go looking for advice, you may get offered a job...

ohai
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by ohai » Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:27 pm

Hi, OP. I'd start by looking up people in your industry on LinkedIn, go have a lunch with them, and discuss what they see as their exit opportunities. They might also have some examples of other people who have successfully diversified their businesses or who have transitioned to regular jobs. If you have time and money to go to business school, and you don't think you are too old, that will be a path to other careers.

vtjon02
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by vtjon02 » Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:41 pm

Any interests? Would you consider going back to school? You are young and have plenty of time left in your career. Rather than trying to find something, why not set yourself up for something great?

carolinaman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by carolinaman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:50 pm

If you can find a good executive search firm, they should be able to advise you of best options and could also help find suitable jobs for you. I would ask friends and trusted business contacts for recommendations.

Your background would enable you to do different things so you should have some options. Being an entrepreneur for 10 years should intrigue some companies, especially for general manager types.

skeptical
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by skeptical » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:02 pm

I would consider reaching out to high tech firms (through a boutique recruiter). Many of them are starved for talent that is creative, entrepreneurial, and shows end to end ownership (concept, development, production, customer).

This would be in areas such as: product management, content management, PR, customer oriented marketing materials, etc. You may need to start off at the low end, especially if you were a sole proprietor, but if you are good, a fast learning, and can add creativity/energy, you can move up quickly with the right company.

skeptical
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by skeptical » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:07 pm

also: Physics degree + math background + fraud background == product and content fraud detection and prevention (think about fake reviews on shopping and content sites).

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prudent
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by prudent » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:16 pm

You might consider looking into doing translation work as a possible gap filler, given your scientific background and being bilingual. I worked for a company that frequently needed to get technical documents translated from English into other languages and it seemed like it could be pretty lucrative for a part-time effort. The company worked through a company which farmed out the work to contracted people with specific specialties/languages (e.g. "civil engineering" + Russian). The company was charged $1/word on average, more for shorter documents.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:22 pm

cochlearboy wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:02 pm
lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:57 pm
Thank you for the reply. Sure, it's in the field of music composition, production and publishing. I have wondered about some sort of job that involves royalty accounting or similar, as I'm very familiar with that area and the terms and agencies involved.
I work in IP law, and I know folks doing that kind of work have been hit hard by lawsuits. That Marvin Gaye decision really spawned a lot of follow on lawsuits. Also, it would be hard for you to get a job involving writing royalty contracts without a JD.

This might sound naive, but is there a way for you to diversify your business (i.e., not focused on music) without incurring business expenses?
Yep, that lawsuit as well as others have been terrifying, although the disruption for me has come from elsewhere. There are ways I could diversify, but they're completely speculative and could take a long time to generate revenue. I could to be honest probably do them while working. I agree on needing a JD for contract writing.

delamer
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by delamer » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:24 pm

Are you a US citizen?

There are a number of federal government positions that require a significant math background, but not necessarily specific experience.

You’d be starting at the entry level, but it’s an option.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:25 pm

skeptical wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:02 pm
I would consider reaching out to high tech firms (through a boutique recruiter). Many of them are starved for talent that is creative, entrepreneurial, and shows end to end ownership (concept, development, production, customer).

This would be in areas such as: product management, content management, PR, customer oriented marketing materials, etc. You may need to start off at the low end, especially if you were a sole proprietor, but if you are good, a fast learning, and can add creativity/energy, you can move up quickly with the right company.
Thank you, this sounds interesting. It's very hard for me to imagine where would I fit in right now, as I've been in such a specific industry on its own all this time, but this seems like a good idea.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:26 pm

prudent wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:16 pm
You might consider looking into doing translation work as a possible gap filler, given your scientific background and being bilingual. I worked for a company that frequently needed to get technical documents translated from English into other languages and it seemed like it could be pretty lucrative for a part-time effort. The company worked through a company which farmed out the work to contracted people with specific specialties/languages (e.g. "civil engineering" + Russian). The company was charged $1/word on average, more for shorter documents.
Amazing - I never would have thought of this! Thank you for such an interesting idea.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:27 pm

skeptical wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:07 pm
also: Physics degree + math background + fraud background == product and content fraud detection and prevention (think about fake reviews on shopping and content sites).
This is also a fascinating idea which seems so obvious now but I had not considered before. I'll make a list of all the ideas in this thread - I'm overwhelmed at how thoughtful and helpful you all are. Thank you.

cherijoh
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by cherijoh » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:20 pm

I sent you a PM with contact info for a recruiter who specializes in analytics/financial services.

GmanJeff
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by GmanJeff » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:21 pm

What income do you require? Will that change if you are willing to relocate to a lower cost of living area? Is your spouse likely to be able to obtain replacement employment where you are or elsewhere and, if she does work, do your personal income requirements change?

Do you want to run your own business again, or work for someone else? Big company, small company, entrepreneurial, or maybe more stable? Gov't jobs which may offer a pension?

Consider reading What Color is Your Parachute by Richard Bolles, and review on-line job postings to see if certain roles capture your interest.

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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by galving » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:46 pm

lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 12:57 pm
As in the title, I'm hoping that I can find some advice / encouragement / guidance from others here on the situation I find myself in now.

I'm 36 years old. I've run my own business as a sole proprietor for the last 10 years in a creative field (not programming). I did well for a while but after a sequence of bad decisions, changing fortunes and disruption of the industry, my income has declined significantly. Added to this, my wife has been notified that she will lose her job within the next 6 months.

For the first time since 2009, I think I'm going to need to look for a job. My current financial situation is ok, but not by any means retire early. We can survive for a year without working if we have to.

I have almost no idea whatsoever on what kind of job to begin looking for, or where. I'm embarrassed to ask our family for advice as they will be shocked after what they've previously seen of me. For now I really can't bring myself to.

If anyone can help me figure out what would be a good area to look into based on my profile, I would be very grateful...

Located in SoCal.

Education:
Bachelor's degree in physics from a UK university (maybe this complicates things, since it's not a US university)

Work experience:
2009-2019: started a creative business from scratch, best year profit was over $300k, has now declined significantly
2006-2009: full-time employment as a research / financial analyst, then consultant, then due diligence

Skills:
I'm sure everyone says it but excellent interpersonal skills, time management, initiative, teamwork, attention to detail
Excellent general computer skills: excel, word etc
High ability in mathematics, but also writing / comprehension / persuasion in English
Native English speaker, fluent in Spanish also
lendoman,
You have an excellent skill stack. . . multiple skills which build and complement one another.
You've actually run a business. . . significant experiences that many others will never have.
Think more along the lines of what did you learn vs. 'bad decisions'. If the industry was truly disrupted that substantially your decisions may have had less of an impact than you currently believe.

Take some time. Breathe. What is your priority?
Make a list. You have time.
You have more control than you 'feel'.
As a business owner you've solved issues in the past, this is just another one to tackle.
You also have 'The Bogleheads'. . .

Good luck!

cbr shadow
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by cbr shadow » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:58 pm

It sounds like you're in a pretty good position. You have some savings/income that will hold you over so you're not in a hurry, you have a degree and a rare skill set, and you live in SoCal when the job market is just booming. I don't have any specific advice other than don't be too hard on yourself since you have lots of options.

Pudge
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by Pudge » Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:44 pm

First, I think you might consider talking to a highly qualified "career coach". Do some homework, research online, ask your friends, and invest the time and money to work with a career coach that can help you. I had a career coach about 10 years ago, and the exercise of working with a coach really helped me think through my job situation. (And I am the least likely of all people to do a "career coach" type of scenario, believe me.)

Also, hire a professional resume writer. A career coach and a professional resume writer all cost money, but I found that it was worth the investment.

Secondly, consider commercial banking as an industry to explore. A lot of the big banks are desperate for commercial credit analysts that can evaluate financial statements for credit requests. The skill sets for credit analytical work seem to match your background. The work is usually fast-paced, requires careful analytical skills, communication skills. The pay is generally high and can grow higher as you gain experience and work on more complex credit reviews. The work is also fairly interesting, as you are evaluating credit risk for a wide variety of different companies in different industries.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:13 pm

GmanJeff wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:21 pm
What income do you require? Will that change if you are willing to relocate to a lower cost of living area? Is your spouse likely to be able to obtain replacement employment where you are or elsewhere and, if she does work, do your personal income requirements change?

Do you want to run your own business again, or work for someone else? Big company, small company, entrepreneurial, or maybe more stable? Gov't jobs which may offer a pension?

Consider reading What Color is Your Parachute by Richard Bolles, and review on-line job postings to see if certain roles capture your interest.
Honestly, to get started and with the possibility of good upwards progression, I'd take $60k as a starting point, but aiming for $100k as soon as I could get it - no idea if that's feasible. Without having had a job for 10 years I don't want to expect too much going in.

If we moved somewhere lower cost I could accept a bit less. My spouse has a degree which should allow her to find employment anywhere we end up. She plans to continue working for a long time but unfortunately the company which employs her is most likely going out of business (completely different field to mine) within 6 months, so she'll be looking fairly soon too.

I think that I'd be fine and happy working for someone else, in principle, even though it's been a long time. More stable I think is preferable, but most important to me would be liking the work and people.

Thank you for the reading recommendation!

birnhamwood
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by birnhamwood » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:16 pm

High school physics/science/math teachers in Southern California can make about $50,000 a year these days, but you'd need a year to become certified and to take a few courses in your teaching field.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:17 pm

galving wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:46 pm

lendoman,
You have an excellent skill stack. . . multiple skills which build and complement one another.
You've actually run a business. . . significant experiences that many others will never have.
Think more along the lines of what did you learn vs. 'bad decisions'. If the industry was truly disrupted that substantially your decisions may have had less of an impact than you currently believe.

Take some time. Breathe. What is your priority?
Make a list. You have time.
You have more control than you 'feel'.
As a business owner you've solved issues in the past, this is just another one to tackle.
You also have 'The Bogleheads'. . .

Good luck!
cbr shadow wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:58 pm
It sounds like you're in a pretty good position. You have some savings/income that will hold you over so you're not in a hurry, you have a degree and a rare skill set, and you live in SoCal when the job market is just booming. I don't have any specific advice other than don't be too hard on yourself since you have lots of options.
Thanks to both of you, as this helps me feel a bit calmer. I would admit I have a tendency to become overly anxious so I appreciate your post a lot.

Thank you also for pointing out "what did you learn vs 'bad decisions'". It's a very important point and helps to see things less negatively. Many of us in this industry are seeking something new right now, whether it's in the industry or out of it..

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:20 pm

Pudge wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:44 pm
First, I think you might consider talking to a highly qualified "career coach". Do some homework, research online, ask your friends, and invest the time and money to work with a career coach that can help you. I had a career coach about 10 years ago, and the exercise of working with a coach really helped me think through my job situation. (And I am the least likely of all people to do a "career coach" type of scenario, believe me.)

Also, hire a professional resume writer. A career coach and a professional resume writer all cost money, but I found that it was worth the investment.

Secondly, consider commercial banking as an industry to explore. A lot of the big banks are desperate for commercial credit analysts that can evaluate financial statements for credit requests. The skill sets for credit analytical work seem to match your background. The work is usually fast-paced, requires careful analytical skills, communication skills. The pay is generally high and can grow higher as you gain experience and work on more complex credit reviews. The work is also fairly interesting, as you are evaluating credit risk for a wide variety of different companies in different industries.
Thanks for the advice and another interesting avenue (commercial banking) I had not considered at all.

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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by LadyGeek » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:21 pm

lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:13 pm
If we moved somewhere lower cost I could accept a bit less. My spouse has a degree which should allow her to find employment anywhere we end up. She plans to continue working for a long time but unfortunately the company which employs her is most likely going out of business (completely different field to mine) within 6 months, so she'll be looking fairly soon too.
Be very careful about those assumptions. Unless your spouse is one of the owners who actually makes that decision, never commit to something that is a rumor at best. I worked at a plant that was rumored to close "any day now". Ten years later, it finally happened.

There are many, many paths that can be taken before a job terminates. For example, the business could be sold and she may get an offer to relocate. That happened at my prior employer's plant closing. I didn't want to move, hence I went elsewhere.
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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lendoman
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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:24 pm

LadyGeek wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:21 pm
lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:13 pm
If we moved somewhere lower cost I could accept a bit less. My spouse has a degree which should allow her to find employment anywhere we end up. She plans to continue working for a long time but unfortunately the company which employs her is most likely going out of business (completely different field to mine) within 6 months, so she'll be looking fairly soon too.
Be very careful about those assumptions. Unless your spouse is one of the owners who actually makes that decision, never commit to something that is a rumor at best. I worked at a plant that was rumored to close "any day now". Ten years later, it finally happened.

There are many, many paths that can be taken before a job terminates. For example, the business could be sold and she may get an offer to relocate. That happened at my prior employer's plant closing. I didn't want to move, hence I went elsewhere.
Thank you - very good points. I can confirm she is not an owner there.

Funnily enough, her company did suggest it would need to close about 18 months ago.. and it's still here. It's just that this time they've made an official announcement, which makes it seem "serious this time"!

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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by LadyGeek » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:39 pm

If the announcement is required due to the WARN act, that's good enough. OTOH, a small private company would care enough to give their employees advance notice.

Does your spouse have a highly desired skill set that is in short supply? She might be able to work for a competitor (and hopefully not violate any proprietary information agreements). Maybe not, but it's worth checking.

This also opens the possibility that your spouse could take the lead here and find a new job first. If it's a large company, there might be some openings that would also work for you. IOW, sell both of your skill sets as a "package deal". This is also worth checking out. If relocation is involved, the new company only has to pay for one move.

When my prior employer closed the plant, those taking the relocation option were offered employment assistance for their spouses. It made the transition easier if the spouse also had a job after the move.
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by WildBill » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:46 pm

Howdy

Consider that the best job you are likely to find is one that you do not even know anything about. You have lots of skills and experience. Start asking smart people for advice - not for jobs- and you will more good leads than you can follow up.

Sort of like what is happening for you on this forum now.

Example - With your background and experience you are well set up to be a product manager in multiple industries. I managed the product development and commercialization process for a firm in the high tech end of the oil and gas for a while. I would have given a guy with your resume an interview in a heartbeat. A challenging and interesting job that pays well.

Good luck

W B
"Through chances various, through all vicissitudes, we make our way." Virgil, The Aeneid

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Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by LadyGeek » Mon Sep 09, 2019 8:06 pm

^^^ Actually, that's a very good suggestion.

Product managers (or project managers) are a people-oriented positions, no question. It is a responsible position that requires someone who understands how to maintain budget and schedule. You can do this. No technical understanding is required. I guarantee you won't be bored, especially when problems happen.

================
In engineering, that would be equivalent to a system engineer - someone who understands the "big picture" and knows how to take disparate topics and make it work as a whole. You are not expected to know how the thing works - that's for the people you oversee. All you need to do is ask leading questions and come up with a schedule that falls within budget.

(A system engineering position should be filled by someone with engineering experience.)
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

Topic Author
lendoman
Posts: 13
Joined: Mon Sep 09, 2019 9:55 am

Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Tue Sep 10, 2019 12:26 am

LadyGeek wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:39 pm
If the announcement is required due to the WARN act, that's good enough. OTOH, a small private company would care enough to give their employees advance notice.

Does your spouse have a highly desired skill set that is in short supply? She might be able to work for a competitor (and hopefully not violate any proprietary information agreements). Maybe not, but it's worth checking.

This also opens the possibility that your spouse could take the lead here and find a new job first. If it's a large company, there might be some openings that would also work for you. IOW, sell both of your skill sets as a "package deal". This is also worth checking out. If relocation is involved, the new company only has to pay for one move.

When my prior employer closed the plant, those taking the relocation option were offered employment assistance for their spouses. It made the transition easier if the spouse also had a job after the move.
That's interesting, I had no idea couples could be a sort of package deal to a company, but of course it makes sense. My wife works in an area which will always need people, and has steady work. I wouldn't say it's very high demand but I'm absolutely confident she'll find a good position. We could definitely try this.

Topic Author
lendoman
Posts: 13
Joined: Mon Sep 09, 2019 9:55 am

Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by lendoman » Tue Sep 10, 2019 12:32 am

WildBill wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:46 pm
Howdy

Consider that the best job you are likely to find is one that you do not even know anything about. You have lots of skills and experience. Start asking smart people for advice - not for jobs- and you will more good leads than you can follow up.

Sort of like what is happening for you on this forum now.

Example - With your background and experience you are well set up to be a product manager in multiple industries. I managed the product development and commercialization process for a firm in the high tech end of the oil and gas for a while. I would have given a guy with your resume an interview in a heartbeat. A challenging and interesting job that pays well.

Good luck

W B
LadyGeek wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 8:06 pm
^^^ Actually, that's a very good suggestion.

Product managers (or project managers) are a people-oriented positions, no question. It is a responsible position that requires someone who understands how to maintain budget and schedule. You can do this. No technical understanding is required. I guarantee you won't be bored, especially when problems happen.

================
In engineering, that would be equivalent to a system engineer - someone who understands the "big picture" and knows how to take disparate topics and make it work as a whole. You are not expected to know how the thing works - that's for the people you oversee. All you need to do is ask leading questions and come up with a schedule that falls within budget.

(A system engineering position should be filled by someone with engineering experience.)
Thank you WildBill. I also felt that a good job for me is likely to be something I wouldn't think of myself. Asking for advice and not jobs also makes complete sense. So, product manager seems like a very interesting possibility.

I wanted to thank everyone for their replies, which have been incredibly useful, but I also don't want to keep bumping this thread back up to the top, so I'll leave off replying to avoid that happening for a bit.

GlobalBogle
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Aug 22, 2019 10:15 pm

Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by GlobalBogle » Tue Sep 10, 2019 2:54 am

lendoman wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:26 pm
prudent wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:16 pm
You might consider looking into doing translation work as a possible gap filler, given your scientific background and being bilingual. I worked for a company that frequently needed to get technical documents translated from English into other languages and it seemed like it could be pretty lucrative for a part-time effort. The company worked through a company which farmed out the work to contracted people with specific specialties/languages (e.g. "civil engineering" + Russian). The company was charged $1/word on average, more for shorter documents.
Amazing - I never would have thought of this! Thank you for such an interesting idea.
Or consider going one step further and become an "AIIC accredited" professional freelance Simultaneous Interpreter. The daily rates are good (I dont know Spanish - English rates in the US, but in Europe depending on your language combination you could charge like 800 USD/day if you are premium). This is more of a real long term profession compared to translation work and you would need to build up client network. I know a few professional simultaneous interpreters and the work involves so many different conferences and meetings and topics, very interesting career I think.
And you can stay your own boss :sharebeer

Cyanide123
Posts: 152
Joined: Sun May 05, 2019 9:14 am

Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by Cyanide123 » Tue Sep 10, 2019 3:28 am

Don't discount the skill set of being an entrepreneur. Very few people keep a business running for more than 3 years. In the early days of any business, the owner handles everything from product management, accounting, setting up infrastructure, legal issues etc.

Owning a business teaches people a lot more than any regular classroom. Keeping a business running for 10 years is pretty impressive.

My father went back to a 9 - 5 job after 25 years of owning/running a company in Pakistan. He did have a specific engineering skill set but he moved back to the US after 25 years once all the children were here. He came back at the height of the depression in 2009-2010 and had a couple job offers within 2-3 months. The skill set of being a successful entrepreneur is one that is highly desired. Don't discount that.

IndigoE
Posts: 34
Joined: Sun Jul 11, 2010 5:44 pm

Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by IndigoE » Tue Sep 10, 2019 8:07 am

Have you considered joining the Peace Corps with your wife? My husband and I joined in 2014 and served in a completely foreign country and culture. After your service you gain non competitive status for government jobs (top of the application stack). Opportunities open up all over the world in addition to the U.S. The chance to give to others while you are completely “covered” including comprehensive health insurance for two years and three months is magical.

We have also been self-employed all our lives then joined Peace Corps in our mid-sixties. As artists, we incorporated our skills into our service where possible and have returned to our previous lives reinvigorated and ready to take on the next thing.

To investigate go to: PeaceCorps.gov and browse around. Your Spanish language capability will be a huge asset if you want to serve in a Spanish speaking country. There is also a program called Peace Corps response which offers shorter finely targeted opportunities to serve on specific projects. Your skill set might land you a very interesting spot and connections for subsequent employment. Regular Peace Corps places couples (even with completely different skill/job backgrounds) while Peace Corps response is mainly for individuals (but a much shorter assignment).

This moment is an opportunity to embark on a life enhancing adventure, don’t settle for the mundane, expand!

PhilosophyAndrew
Posts: 629
Joined: Sat Aug 13, 2016 10:06 am

Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

Post by PhilosophyAndrew » Tue Sep 10, 2019 10:27 am

^^What an inspiring suggestion!

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