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Home > Uncategorized > Career Chat Transcript for December 1, 2009

Career Chat Transcript for December 1, 2009

December 1st, 2009

This is the transcript of our latest Career Chat, held on December 1, 2009 — Douglas

douglaswelch: Welcome everyone to tonight’s Career Chat, brought to you by the Career Opportunities Podcast and Column at and the Career Opportunities Community Site
douglaswelch: The tagline for Career Opportunities is “Helping to Build the Career You Deserve” and the podcast, community site and
douglaswelch: these chats are designed to do just that.
douglaswelch: We typically we open run these chats as a simple Q&A format, so if you have comments
douglaswelch: or questions, just let them fly. I will answer as many as I can and others will chime in with their ideas too
douglaswelch: The conversation continues 24/7 on the Career Community site. You can also add your questions
douglaswelch: and comments there.

benwmaddox: thanks
douglaswelch: So, with that out of the way, what questions do we have tonight? Anyone want to jump in?
benwmaddox: no. 🙂
douglaswelch: Oh oh. 🙂
benwmaddox: I wanted to observe this.
guest-24685 entered the room
joliveroconnell: How do you recommend keeping yourself fresh
joliveroconnell: When you are working full time
douglaswelch: @Jennifer, let me pick on you then. (SMILE) What are the big current issues youa re facing in your Tuesday’s with Transitioners meetings?
guest-24685 changed nickname to rshourbaji
joliveroconnell: In other words, how do you stay on top of being marketable
joliveroconnell: That sounded horrible. Very tired tonight
douglaswelch: @Jennifer Ideally, when working full time, your work should be as rewarding as possible and one
douglaswelch: way that it is rewarding is that it provide opportunities for learning new things.
benwmaddox: Realisticly?
joliveroconnell: But if it’s not, and you want to move in that direction?
douglaswelch: If you feel you are doing the same thing over and over, it is time to stir things up a bit
joliveroconnell: Of rewarding work.
joliveroconnell: So what do you recommend, without actually quitting the job?
douglaswelch: You should always have interests outside of your work. Things that mean something to you personally, regardless of the money rewards
douglaswelch: I think it is a poor second, but engaging in these outside pursuits gives you the energy and exitement that might be mssing from
douglaswelch: your day-to-day job,
douglaswelch: They could also provide a way out of your current, less rewarding job and and a link to something new
douglaswelch: Not every hobby needs to turn into a new career, nor should it, but it is certainly a place to start looking
douglaswelch: for a new career that excites you
douglaswelch: I never went and got my Master’s Degree, although my wife is now all but dissertation on her Ph.D that said,
douglaswelch: I have never stopped learning. I follow whatever interests catch my interest. Beekeeping, gardening, architecture, design,
douglaswelch: art, watercolor painting.
douglaswelch: This is what I have always considered my own personal Master’s Degree.
joliveroconnell: Keeping yourself in the mode of learning is important.
douglaswelch: @jennifer I think that could be THE most important aspect.
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joliveroconnell: How to do that and juggle FT work that is less-than-rewarding can be a challenge.
douglaswelch: it is soooooo easy to simply slide into a routine and you have to do something to mix it up a bit
rshourbaji: My philosophy is similar – endeavor to learn something new everyday; and keep learning until I die. 🙂
joliveroconnell: Is there a punch list, or have you written an article about how to mix it up?
douglaswelch: Well, one issue that crops up is the fact hat full time work starts to spill over into your own “me” time. You have to
douglaswelch: carve our your own time, especially if the FT work ius unfulfilling
joliveroconnell: Good point
douglaswelch: Good quote rshourbaji
joliveroconnell: I’m trying to stir-up and inspire people for the new year.
douglaswelch: Hmm…I have probably written about it in several columns over the years. The first rule is basically what I mentioned above
joliveroconnell: They know they need to do something different, but they’re frozen from actually acting on it.
guest-25006 changed nickname to rioguzman
douglaswelch: Follow those things that interest you most — just for yourself
douglaswelch: We talked about inertia last time and yes this can be a great way to start breaking free of inertia that is holding us in a bad place
benwmaddox: How do you handle an abundance of obsessions related to learning / creating things?
douglaswelch: The fact is, too, that oftentimes something we learn in an unrelated area can be related back to our usual
douglaswelch: work and even give us some breakthroughs there
joliveroconnell: Very true.
rshourbaji: Great point @douglaswelch –
joliveroconnell: @benw–the ADD syndrome of creativity?
douglaswelch: @ben Well I am probably the worst about obsessions, but they all bring something to the game, so I say go for it
douglaswelch: Your boss may wonder how beekeeping could possibly relate to accounting, but they fact is, it does.
douglaswelch: Everything is inter-realted.
benwmaddox: Hah. My boss wonders how my passion for creating games is at all helpful for work.
douglaswelch: Finally, simply engaging in thoughtful activity is a useful activity. It prevents atrophy
joliveroconnell: I find playing games helpful to my work-I think that’s a principle that should be incorporated into business!
douglaswelch: @Ben Well, for one, it promotes logical thinking and design skills.
joliveroconnell: I’ve gotten better at strategizing
douglaswelch: Strategy is great, when you have a fairly clear view of the future. I find that the world changes so rapidly, I have to spend more time on
douglaswelch: adapting to the world as it changes, almost
douglaswelch: on a day-to-day basis
douglaswelch: There is an old proverb, “Man plans. God Laughs” I try to remember that one
rshourbaji: Great proverb Douglas! I will make a note of it!
douglaswelch: One thing I try to push is adaptation to your environment. I see so many peeople trying to use 19th Century ideas to deal with 21st century issues and wondering why they fail
douglaswelch: I have to work hard every day to avoid what I call “Hey you kids get off my lawn!” syndrome
joliveroconnell: @Doug-that’s funny
douglaswelch: It is so easy to turn into the people we used to dislike when we were kits
douglaswelch: kids
douglaswelch: This is why I always try to attend BarCamps and other unconferences and also intereact with younger people
douglaswelch: Which, now that I say that, is another great way to shake things up.
joliveroconnell: Keeps you fresh
douglaswelch: Just being around younger minds can help to keep your thinking fresh
douglaswelch: You might not agree with them, but you will be forced to think about WHY? — the most important question, I think, and one
douglaswelch: that doesn’t get asked nearly enough
benwmaddox: WHY?
benwmaddox: 🙂
benwmaddox: (joke)
douglaswelch: @Ben, becuase people have allowed themselves to stop looking up and focus only on the ground at their feet as they plod along
douglaswelch: @Ben a joke, yes, but a teachable moment, too. (LAUGH)
joliveroconnell: The quote “Ours is not to wonder why, ours is but to do or die” sometimes trips us up…
douglaswelch: Oh G_D, not that!
douglaswelch: Bobby Kennedy had it right when he quoted Cicero, I think…Others look at the world and ask why? I look at the world and ask Why not?! I think that is it
joliveroconnell: A quote for those uncomfortable with the unknown or lack of structure
douglaswelch: One common theme I come back to again and again is that WE are responsible for our own lives.
douglaswelch: No one will ever care as much about our career as we do. They can’t. So we have to do everything we can
douglaswelch: do to care for our own well being and our own careers.
joliveroconnell: Me and my nephew were just talking about this very thing!
joliveroconnell: Working your talent until it works for you
douglaswelch: we must also NOT be surprised when others don’t see our work or career as important. How could they? They can only really udnerstand their own career, if that
rioguzman: Take responsibility for what we do.
douglaswelch: @rloguzman Yes, Yes, Yes. Too many times we can fall into the victim mentality of “everything is happening TO me” Everything will happen TO you until you make things happen FOR you.
douglaswelch: If you don’t take control of your life there are countless people out there who will control it for you. Very dangerous situation
douglaswelch: To got back to your orignal question, Jennifer, you asked how to work through a job that is unfulfilling, I think?
joliveroconnell: @Doug-actually it was more along the lines of
joliveroconnell: keeping yourself sharp, even if you have a job that makes you dull
douglaswelch: Ah, yes
joliveroconnell: or makes you feel dull
douglaswelch: WE have talked a bit about how to stay sharp and do things for yourself, but I have to reinforce the idea that sometimes,
douglaswelch: getting a new job MAY be the only answer.
douglaswelch: You don’t want to feel you are jumping from job to job, but neither do you want to waste time in a
joliveroconnell: And the hard part is moving someone from that place of inertia to do that.
douglaswelch: job that is not moving towards your career goals.
douglaswelch: I might even be so bold to tell people that working in an unfulfilling job is “wasting” time they should be spending developing their careers
douglaswelch: Sometimes using the term “wasting” can help people to jar loose from the concept that every job is forever
joliveroconnell: Hmm… that’s a good term.
douglaswelch: Moving from one job to another is difficult, I totally agree with that, but it isn’t nearly as bad as waking up in 20-25 years and
douglaswelch: realize you are nowhere near where you wanted to be.
douglaswelch: That is truly a frightening scenario to me
joliveroconnell: I have no problem with it. I just find it a challenge to instill that perspective in others
joliveroconnell: People are still looking for the 20 year “security”
douglaswelch: Another “shock tactic” is to ask them if they can see themselves sitting in the same place, doing the same thing, 10, 15, 20 years from now
joliveroconnell: And not thinking about learning, growing and staying on top of the market
joliveroconnell: So you’re always prepared to adjust when needed.
douglaswelch: I have used the (indelicate) term FU money and I think you could also apply the concept of FU knowledge, too
joliveroconnell: yes, we did talk about that. It’ sa good term
douglaswelch: If you aren’t learning something new, you are almost guarenteed NOT to grow in your career. No fuel. No Movement
douglaswelch: You make your own momentum, your own movement through your career. Your career is made up of a succession of jobs.
douglaswelch: The years of 30 years and a gold watch weren’t even a reality for our parents, let alone us.
douglaswelch: It is a nice dream (for some), but the reality was always suspect
douglaswelch: To come back to another theme I hit on regularly, too, I don’t think you can do your BEST work unless you are truly interested in your work
douglaswelch: You can do some OK work. Maybe even some GOOD work, but GREAT work comes from an excitement and, dare I say, a passion — not a paycheck
douglaswelch: Any other questions or comments tonight?
guest-26978 entered the room
benwmaddox: not from me
guest-26982 entered the room
guest-26978 changed nickname to rshourbaji
douglaswelch: For those of you new to the Career Opportunities podcast, my latest columns is “Break out of the traditional job search treadmill” at
douglaswelch: Oops, looks like that got cut off
douglaswelch: That one should work.
rshourbaji: Lots of great info here tougnt. Is there someway to capture a log of the entire conversation?
douglaswelch: Yes, I will post the complete transcript of this chat on both the Career-Op blog and the community site as soon as we are done tonight
benwmaddox: select all -> right click -> copy
joliveroconnell: These are archived on the site
benwmaddox: or that
douglaswelch: @Ben, well, yeah, if you want to do it the EASY way (BIG LAUGH)
douglaswelch: HA HA
benwmaddox: I tried 😀
douglaswelch: So, what are you all planning for the New Year? It is always a great time to re-evalute and think about new things
benwmaddox: My sister is getting married on 1/2/2010.
douglaswelch: Ah marriage. We have friends who were married on New Year’s Day
joliveroconnell: I want to go on a cruize
joliveroconnell: cruise
douglaswelch: Marriage can teach you a lot about your career, too. Oh boy
benwmaddox: I wouldn’t know.
joliveroconnell: Do tell, Doug?
douglaswelch: We will be celebrating our 24th in June. Silver Anniversary rapidly approaching
benwmaddox: I’ll be celebrating my 25th soon.
benwmaddox: oh, not birthday. 🙂
douglaswelch: Well, Jennifer, marriages are like a job where you don’t have the luxury (except in extreme cases) or quitting. In fact, you don’t’ want to quit, so you find som every innovative ways of making it
douglaswelch: the best that you can
joliveroconnell: That’ sa wonderful milestone
joliveroconnell: Esp. for our generation
douglaswelch: Marriage is the opposite of a career in someways, as it is not a collection of jobs, it is one job you try to do your absolute very best at 🙂
douglaswelch: That said, having someone at your side can help you make some of those more worisome decisions about life and career
douglaswelch: Then you have kids and realize how much most workplaces resemble a pre-school. (LAUGH)
joliveroconnell: Or prodd you out of the inertia!
joliveroconnell: LOL
rshourbaji: OK, My browse hiccupped so I had to restart. Where are they archived on your site Douglas?
douglaswelch: Oh yes, the prodding can be very helpful.
douglaswelch: @rshourbaji I will post the transcripts to the Career Opportunities blog at and to the Career-Op Community site at
douglaswelch: @Jennifer sometimes we all need a good swift kick in the pants to get us moving again….and the supportive environment that encourages us
douglaswelch: to take some risks
joliveroconnell: Sometimes it’s baby steps, though
douglaswelch: On a more practical note, a spouse with health care coverage can also give your the economic
douglaswelch: freedom to try out working for yourself or starting your own company
douglaswelch: Life’s greatest accomplishments take place in baby steps. In fact, it is the big leaps you really have to watch out for
douglaswelch: Ask anyone who has won the lottery or been elevated to celebrityhood. Yowch! There are some big train wrecks there
joliveroconnell: What seems like big leaps, were actually a series of baby steps..
douglaswelch: Yes, the overnight success after 30 years. 🙂
joliveroconnell: Exactly. My actor friend talks about that.
joliveroconnell: What looks like an overnight sensation actually has had a 20 year acting career
douglaswelch: We have several “working actor” friends who you see on TV all the time. They are the epitome of success for me
douglaswelch: Making a good living doing something they love
joliveroconnell: I agree.
joliveroconnell: And still be able to go to the grocery store without being mobbed!
douglaswelch: lI try to explain this to musicians when I talk to them about new media. We seem to have lost the understanding that
douglaswelch: there are levels of success between unknown and
douglaswelch: A good friend has been the voice of Goofy for 23 years and that was exactly his quote.
joliveroconnell: True, true. Redefine success.
douglaswelch: When he goes to conventions he is mobbed with fans, but he can still go to the grocery store without any issues
douglaswelch: I like to think about the vets coming back from WWII. They wanted a house, a good job, a family and a grill in the backyard. To them, especially after seeing
joliveroconnell: How many people know how Nancy Cartwright looks?
douglaswelch: what they saw in the war, that was true success
douglaswelch: Sometimes reaching to hard for the media’s definiton of success can end up crushing you.
douglaswelch: Look at the whole Balloon Boy fiasco and now the party creashers at the White House.
joliveroconnell: Messes, both of them.
douglaswelch: Yep
douglaswelch: They might have ruined the rest of their lives by trying to reach some pinnacle of success as defined by other people.
douglaswelch: We are rapidly approaching 8 PM here in Los Angeles, so I will start to wrap up tonight’s chat. Any more questions or comments?
douglaswelch: I love hearing what is happening in everyone’s career. Just as we talked about earlier, it makes me think and I think that is
douglaswelch: one of the best gifts anyone can bring to you.
joliveroconnell: might be some changes coming, so you’ll hear more!
douglaswelch: As I mentioned before, the Career Conversation continues 24/7 on the Career Opportunities Community Site at
douglaswelch: Add your caree stories and questions there and share them with your fellow members.
douglaswelch: Watch that space, too, for announcements of future Career Chats. We seem to be falling into a twice monthly pattern and I think I will
douglaswelch: try to continue that for the forseeable future.
joliveroconnell: Will do. Thanks!
douglaswelch: Bring your friends and family.
douglaswelch: The Career Opportunities Podcast and Column appears each Friday at . You can subscribe using iTunes or your favorite RSS reader and receive
douglaswelch: each new column and episode automatically.
benwmaddox: thanks!
douglaswelch: I want to thank everyone for coming out tonight. I look forward to “seeing” you in the future
rshourbaji: Thanks for the chat! And everything else you do to help people in career transition!
douglaswelch: Thank you for the kind words! They are always appreciated!
joliveroconnell: Ditto! Have a good night and a good week, everyone.
douglaswelch: Good night all!

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