Q: The verbal abuse that I receive from my boss has been escalating for several years. About once a week, he begins shouting, cursing and banging on my desk. He starts criticizing my work, then brings up issues from my personal life.
Like many young professionals, Gracie Quatchon is learning how to navigate the business world with charm. It’s not necessarily something taught in school alongside marketing or budgeting, the 30-year-old Seattle banker says.
Emotionally, jobs can be like lovers. We fall for them, fight with them and sometimes lose them. The Great Recession left millions of Americans jilted by their jobs. But as the economy continues its slow recovery, some find their old flames back on the prowl.
Q: The head of our department has been pressuring employees to purchase products from her husband, who recently began selling diet supplements through a multilevel marketing company. When I was invited to a “party” at their home to hear a sales pitch, I politely declined. But she still keeps trying to convince me to buy the products.
By NWjobs staff In honor of Mother's Day, NWjobs asked readers to share what their fathers taught them about work. Here are excerpts. “The best advice my mother and grandmother taught me about work was to always take advantage of...
Most of us think we know how to give feedback. Positive comments are better -- and more useful -- than negative ones. And if you do have to point out something wrong, start with a compliment, move on to the problem, then end on a high note. It turns out that it’s not that simple.
“No is a very simple word. One syllable. Two letters. One of the shortest words in the English language, yet one of the most difficult for women to say at work.”
Q: I have been a firefighter for 13 years, and I also have ADHD. I went into firefighting after reading an article that said it was a good career choice for someone like me. Unfortunately, that writer was wrong, because I hate every aspect of this work.
What did your mother teach you about work? NWjobs is collecting vignettes about the career-related lessons readers learned from their mothers, whether it was verbally or by example. Email your contribution in 75 words or fewer to email@example.com by April...
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I was recently told by both my boss and human resources that people have been complaining about me. My co-workers say I act superior and try to oversee their work. Apparently,...
By Karla L. Miller / Special to The Washington Post Q: After a restructuring, I was given a new position that is less work but requires me to assist my colleagues. They have refused my help, started excluding me from...
I’ve realized that I lose my temper at work once in a while, and people seem to be nervous around me. I don’t want to have that effect on people; what can I do?
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I work in a small company where the owners refuse to do anything about incompetent employees. As a department head, I am not allowed to confront poor performers because the top...
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: For a long time, one of my co-workers was very rude and snippy to me. Our new manager recently decided that we should be separated, so she transferred both of us...
By Rex Huppke / Chicago Tribune Parents are often told -- by magazines, television news shows and Oprah -- that they are doing things wrong. Don’t give kids regular milk; give them organic or they’ll turn into mutant cow people....
My manager says she wants to help me get promoted, but she doesn’t seem to be doing anything about it.
You’re reading the newspaper, watching television or looking at something online that features comments or advice from an “expert.” How did that person get there?
My daughter, a high-school junior, wants to be a teacher. That doesn’t sit well with my husband, who worries about the state of education and the job outlook.
My boss and I have very different opinions about the performance of two people who report to me. She refused to sign their annual appraisals until I lowered the ratings and added some negative comments.
After last year’s presidential election, some experts talked about how the Republicans were out of touch with the very people they needed to have vote for them. That thinking holds true for any leadership position. Leaders must understand their diverse constituents -- a task that can sometimes be easier said than done.
About a year ago, I accidentally walked in on the CEO’s secretary in a compromising position with one of the vice presidents. From then on, this secretary did everything possible to make my life miserable, even though I never mentioned the incident to anyone.
Since the recession and cutbacks, it has become easy to be a workplace whiner or someone who points out roadblocks. What’s more difficult is being the person who calmly puts on his or her problem-solving cap and brings ideas and solutions.
My hiring decisions don’t seem to be very good. The past few people I’ve hired have fallen short of my expectations. I can’t figure it out -- I’m hitting it off with them in the interviews.
My new boss doesn't seem to realize that I know how to do my job. He's a nice guy, but he is always telling me what to do even though I've been in my role for a few years now. How can I get him to back off?
Little things we say every day can make or break our workplace image. Darlene Price, an executive coach and founder of Well Said Inc., has a list of phrases that we may know to avoid. But find me someone who has never said any of them.
My manager recently gave me a performance warning for coming to work late. She has started monitoring me very closely, which makes me feel like some sort of criminal.
Even though I'm a senior manager, no one outside my department seems to know I exist.
During my last performance review, my manager told me that I need to improve my interpersonal relationships. Some of my co-workers apparently said that I don't talk to them enough.
Is an urgent need for new perspective ever a valid reason to quit a job?
Many of us face a dilemma with our careers: Do we take action, or do we wait for someone to come and give us what we want? Unfortunately, too many people choose the passive route.
I just started a new job with a great company. There are only a small handful of us in my role, and I’m among the more experienced in this newly emerging discipline.
People turn to contracting for a variety of other reasons beyond making ends meet after a layoff or keeping skills sharp between jobs. Some want more flexibility and control over the hours they work and the types of projects they take on -- even the amount of money they want to make.
By Kyle Nagel / Dayton Daily News Membership in the communication-skills group Toastmasters International has grown, which officials say signals workers’ desire to stand out during in-person interactions. The organization reported an all-time membership high of 273,895 around the world...
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: The mother of one of my employees recently called my boss to complain that her daughter, "Angie," was being overworked. Angie was upset because some required training made it difficult for...
I’m excited for my bosses to read this so they can see what an awesome job I’m doing at column writing and at being handsome and great.
For the past five years, I have suffered from depression. During that time, I have been on and off medication, but I have never told my employer about this problem.
Salary.com Stress is a lot like Michael Jordan in his prime -- you can’t stop him. You can only hope to contain him. So even though we can’t totally eliminate stress from our lives, here is a list of ways...
Have you ever seen a job posting that looks like a great opportunity -- if only you met the qualifications?
By Joyce E.A. Russell / The Washington Post Do you suffer from Imposter Syndrome? The term, created by psychologists Pauline Clance and Suzanne Imes in 1978, refers to the idea that competent people find it hard to believe in their...
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: My boss recently hired a guy who seems determined to cut me out of the loop. “Mike” is a project manager whose job requires him to interact with members of my...
Last-minute projects, insane deadlines, backstabbing you’ve had enough of being the team player with the heaviest workload who just wants to stay out of trouble. But how do you tackle the issue?
By Diane Stafford / McClatchy Newspapers Management consultant John Beeson has written extensively about how to deal with a bad boss. He says it's vital to career success for you to take responsibility for improving the relationship. At least for...
By Joyce E.A. Russell / Special to The Washington Post Q: I’m truly getting sick of being in a managerial position of having to promote/enforce/talk up policies and positions of senior management that blatantly scream “We’re being cheap and making...
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: Since joining this company a few weeks ago, I have noticed a lot of areas that need improvement. However, I'm not sure how honest I should be in sharing my views...
Sheryl Cattell’s passion for her work is so intense she is often still at her desk at midnight. “I just go into a zone and literally have no idea of space and time,” Catell says.
I have been contracting for a company for more than a year. I am reliable and hardworking. I have a co-worker in a full-time position who takes personal calls, even chatting online with a webcam. He’s loud and has a foul mouth.
In today’s busy world, prioritizing between your work and your personal life can be a huge challenge. But studies show that a poor work-life balance can result in unhealthy levels of stress, unhappiness and reduced productivity.
I supervise three technicians in a busy medical clinic. These employees recently complained to management that I belittle them, show them no respect and occasionally cause them to leave work in tears.
In honor of Father’s Day, NWjobs asked readers to share what their fathers taught them about work. Here are excerpts.
Rick was well, to put it politely, ticked off. Someone he had worked with and trusted for years had betrayed him. And he wasn’t in the mood to forgive and forget for eight years.
People known for their charisma must have been born with it -- because if charisma could be learned everyone would have it, right?
I've been seeing many business cards and LinkedIn profiles listing "MBA" after a person's name. Is this appropriate? I thought that was reserved for those with specific certifications or J.D.s and Ph.D.s.
Ready for a new habit that will keep your career as safe and secure as a career can get these days?
Good negotiating isn't a skill reserved just for CEOs and United Nations diplomats. It's useful for all of us, whether we're asking for a raise, interviewing for a job, buying a car, deciding on family vacations, even dealing with our kids over bedtime.
I hope to be offered a job soon. The problem is the week training would start, I am supposed to go to Mexico with my family, maybe one of the last family vacations we will have as our kids are getting older.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: One of my star employees has developed a very negative attitude. During the past three years, I have assigned “Kevin” to desirable projects, given him special bonuses and made him a...
Q: I am a happily married man in my mid-40s with three young children. During my career, I have built a successful business and accumulated enough wealth so that I have no worries about money. My problem is that I really don't know what motivates me anymore.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I'm having trouble deciding whether to change jobs. For a number of years, I have worked for a small local company. I can walk to work and go home for lunch,...
When a new supervisor steps onto the scene, everyone gets a little nervous.
You come home after a stressful day at work, kick off your shoes, and continue to stew about the unrealistic demands of a customer or an insult from your jerky boss. If you're married, chances are high that your spouse could come through the door soon with similar gripes.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: My boss recently moved my desk so that I would be farther away from my co-worker, "Tamara." Tamara's annoying behavior causes me to react, and our conflicts have been getting progressively...
While you may know that studies have found that multitasking hurts productivity, the truth is you really haven’t stopped trying to do more than one thing at a time, have you? After all, while some people may not be able to multitask well, that certainly doesn’t include you.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: Can you suggest a nice way to interrupt during a business conversation? For the past week, I have been meeting with vendors who hope to sell their products to our...
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: Six months ago, I started a contract job with a small software group. The lead developer is a control freak who has taken over some of the tasks listed in my...
If the workplace were a person, meetings would be the unidentifiable, gooey stuff stuck to that person’s shoe.
By Karla Miller / Special to The Washington Post Q: A colleague and I have fallen in love after working closely together for about a year. Unfortunately, our boss has forbidden us from dating because he feels it would...
By Rex Huppke / Chicago Tribune Q: A person I worked with at my last job was let go, and he just requested I write him a recommendation. This co-worker was not the best employee, and I do not want...
A business meal is never just about the food. It may be about the drink. If you’re a job applicant or ambitious employee, you should treat with care any job interviews or business meetings conducted over a meal.
Q: My supervisor is being transferred to a different department. The position she is vacating has just been posted. Although it would mean a fantastic career move for me, I have decided not to apply. I remain committed to my job but am concerned that not applying for this position will be considered a negative.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I’m a single mother who has been unemployed for about six months. In my previous position, I had a flexible schedule which allowed me to easily attend school events or schedule...
Performance review season is upon us. This presents an opportunity for employees to demonstrate their accomplishments and distinguish themselves and their value to the organization.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: On a recent employee opinion survey, my staff gave me a terrible rating on favoritism. I have no idea why they feel that I'm biased, since I try to be very...
I recently received an advance copy of a book that has the word "SEX" in the title in big, red capital letters and, because I'm a sucker and a guy, I opened it and started looking for pictures. Finding none, I grunted and settled for second-best -- looking at the words. Turns out they are quite interesting, and not in the way you might imagine.
By Michael Crom / Gannett Q: With the arrival of 2012, I am looking for ways to improve myself. Like every person I know, I have my strengths and weaknesses. One thing I would like to improve is my confidence....
Requesting feedback from others about your specific behaviors is a frequent recommendation in this workplace-advice column. But many people are uncomfortable doing this, or are at a loss as to how to proceed.
By Rex Huppke / The Chicago Tribune Q: My daughter-in-law works for a very big company and is paid for 40 hours a week, but she winds up working about 90 hours a week with no other compensation. Jobs are...
By Liz Reyer Minneapolis Star Tribune Q: After being out of work for quite a while, I'm happy to say that I'm starting a new job. But I'm concerned about getting back into the routine smoothly. What can I do...
By Rex Huppke Chicago Tribune Q: How do you deal with a co-worker who thinks that because they have been there longer and are older, they know more than you about how best to do the job? A: I imagine...
By Marie G. McIntyre McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I would like to know how very brief jobs should be handled on a resume. My most recent position was eliminated after I had been there only eight weeks. If I include...
By Rex Huppke / Chicago Tribune Q: What’s the best way for a newbie to avoid office politics and still fit in with the rest of the crowd? -- Dave in Chicago, via Facebook A: You may want to sit...
It’s that time of year when our thoughts turn away from pumpkin-pie eating and toward gift giving, followed quickly by goal setting. This new crop of books for the career-minded will help with the last two. All are available in print or as e-books, but remember, downloads are trickier to wrap.
Some job hunters who have been invited for interviews tell me they’ve been shaken to encounter what’s known as the “stress interview.”
Q: I'm having a communication problem with a co-worker, "Angie," whose father owns our company. Angie repeatedly oversteps her bounds and tries to do my job. I had a direct talk with her in a kind and gentle tone, but...
Q: My boss, “Jerry,” keeps trying to reduce his workload by giving me assignments that he should do himself. He also fails to follow up on important issues, which often leads to a crisis. When this happens, Jerry tends to...
A few years ago, Nicholas Bond, the town planner for Eatonville, Wash., decided he needed some stability in his highly political job, where “being fired is a fact of life.”
By Rex Huppke The Chicago Tribune Q: How do you deal with a toxic co-worker or manager? -- Anonymous, via email A: Because you can’t “unfriend,” “unfollow,” or “delete” a person you cross paths with each day -- and because...
By Lora Shinn Special to NWjobs A traditional Japanese dragon tattoo wraps around the back of Sandra Magallanes. Characters from the book “Where the Wild Things Are” dance across her bicep. But to score an accounting position in a property-management...
By L.M. SixelHouston Chronicle Houston management consultant Craig Wasserman has been counseling rising executives since 1975 on how they can become better managers. Wasserman and his business partner recently wrote “The Invisible Spotlight: Why Managers Can’t Hide.” He calls it...
By Dawn DuganSalary.com While it’s important to focus on the big steps that will help you climb the corporate ladder, don’t forget that small actions can have a big impact, too. Here are 12 things you can do in five...
By Lora Shinn Special to NWjobs Tonia Smalley wishes she had resigned differently. One day, she dropped off her daughter at day care and then called her boss to quit. After 11 years in pharmaceutical sales, Smalley wanted to spend...
At a time when job security seems to be a thing of the past, many workers think about what they’d do “just in case” they lost their job — go back to school, open a business or work in another field. Career experts say developing a Plan B is critical, no matter what line of work you are in or how comfortable you feel in your job.
Laid off at the start of the recession as the marketing director for a regional homebuilder, Leah Schedin quickly realized she lacked something essential for a new job: a college degree. Without one, she found, her 18 years of experience didn’t matter. So Schedin put her talents to work finding a university where she could get academic credit for her work experience. She found one: City University of Seattle, a private, nonprofit institution that’s at the vanguard of a movement catering to the growing numbers of adult learners and military veterans who are changing careers.
Most of us look forward to receiving a promotion at work. After all, it’s usually the culmination of a lot of hard work and personal sacrifice that has finally netted us more money and a new title. But what happens when you’re offered a promotion and you don’t want it? Is there a way to say “no” without committing career suicide?
Some people are natural managers. They love to lead, drive performance and contribute to the broader goals of a company. The perks also can be enticing — more money, an office, perhaps even an expense account. Yet management isn’t for everyone.
If the job market improves and more employees change jobs of their own volition, more will have to decide what to say‚ or not‚ in exit interviews. If departing employees don't reveal the real reasons they're leaving, organizations miss good feedback and fail to address problems, says Beth Carvin, whose company, Nobscot Corp., sells computerized exit interview services to employers. "They ask because they want to know," she says.
By Rachel Beck Associated Press Mentors can offer advice about how to improve your skills. (Jupiterimages) People willing to share their workplace wisdom to further your career could be closer than you think. Mentors can offer career advice or...
By Michelle Goodman Special to NWjobs Chris Pesce of Seattle was a lawyer before he decided to transition to a more satisfying career as a high school math teacher. (Linda Hughes) Financially speaking, Chris Pesce had it all: the...
You voted for the best of the Northwest in our annual competition. See which companies Puget Sound employees chose as the happiest, healthiest and most fulfilling workplaces.
Workers of all ages and walks of life are pursuing jobs where the mission is just as important as the money -- if not more so.
It can be scary to change careers later in life, but folks 50 and older can arm themselves with search strategies and resources designed specifically for them.
Being your own boss requires more than just hanging out a shingle. Do your homework before you take the plunge.
By Linda Hughes Staff Writer LINDA HUGHES Nursing students watch as educator Neil Foltz prepares a needle for an injection. From left, Magdala Thermidor, Caroline Fewing (seated) and Kelly Finn are students at Renton Technical College. When ironworker Neil...
By Linda Hughes Special to NWjobs It isn't easy to find a physical therapist on unemployment. The people who help patients regain mobility, coordination and strength after an injury or disease are in high demand -- and limited supply....
By Suzanne Monson Special to NWjobs Yo-yo dieting. Binge eating. Food allergy reactions. High cholesterol. Kerry Neville has seen them all. As a Puget Sound-area registered dietitian, Neville knows that designing meals for optimum health can be a challenge,...
By Suzanne Monson Special to NWjobs Don’t let the job title fool you. There are hundreds of job openings in health care settings throughout the Puget Sound region -- and many of the same positions have different names. “One...
Southwest Washington Medical Center is growing its own qualified nurses. Instead of struggling to find qualified applicants to fill nursing...
Pharmacists remain in short supply across the country. Competition among retail outlets and health care facilities is fierce, and the pay is high, but demand still outstrips new recruits to the field, as an aging population in need of their services increases.
If you have what it takes, teaching can be an extremely satisfying career full of opportunities for personal and professional development.
We've all heard the old adage: When life hands you lemons, make lemonade." If the lemon in your life is your current job, two local career coaches advise you to take stock -- and then take control.
As layoffs across the country rattle Americans’ sense of job security, some are taking it as incentive to go after their dream careers.
In these scary economic times, older workers are putting off their retirement and hanging on to a paycheck.
Now: Leadership and career-transition coach Then: Political intern Current position: Leadership, professional development and career-transition coach and lawyer; affiliated with Career Action Groups and with the nonprofit Executive Development Institute in Seattle. First job: Executive intern, Hawaii governor's office....
Losing a job can mean losing more than just a paycheck. Without some planning, an extended layoff can cause job skills to fade and make someone less attractive to potential employers.
By Kirsten Valle McClatchy Newspapers YALONDA M. JAMES/CHARLOTTE (N.C.) OBSERVER Timisha Daniels, 25, plays with her 10-month-old son, Cassidy. Daniels, who quit her job before giving birth, is now job hunting. Her husband was recently laid off. CHARLOTTE, N.C....
For many college students in the class of 2009, the post-graduation job hunt has turned into a quest for a rewarding Plan B — or in many cases Plan C or D.
By The Associated Press Advice for college seniors on making the best of a bad job market, based on interviews with experts: Consider offering to work as an intern rather than a full-time hire. Some companies are reluctant to...
Career-switchers make up about one-third of the ranks of new teachers, and that number has jumped in the past decade. As the recession deepens, more people are deciding to join the pedagogical ranks.
By Bob Cox McClatchy Newspapers DENISON, Texas — In an economy where good-paying jobs with security and long career prospects seem few and far between, a new school is offering students a fast track to just that kind of...
By OMAR L. GALLAGE Austin American-Statesman AUSTIN, Texas — It's not often that someone's job, as they explain it to you, is one you never knew existed. But Jessica O'Connell is used to explaining her latest gig to family...
An enterprising couple helps older folks transition to smaller quarters while preserving a personal essence. The "move management" field is poised to take off with the aging population.
Thousands of older Americans with an entrepreneurial bent have started new careers by buying small franchises in everything from beauty shops to home maintenance to tax preparation.
By Hanah Cho The Baltimore Sun A slow economy and labor market can lead many workers to consider going back to school to advance or change their careers. But it might not be the right choice for everyone. For...
By Steve Vogel The Washington Post WASHINGTON — The U.S. Army has launched an effort to improve the training of its enormous civilian work force, seeking to repair a long-neglected system for those employees who don't wear uniforms. The...
Now: CIO, CellNetix Pathology & Laboratories Then: Construction helper First job: At the age of 13, I was put to work digging holes, carrying concrete blocks and, most important, making tea for the other workers at a small construction...
Candice Choi The Associated Press Social-networking sites | Personal information, photos can turn into accidental résumé if seen by recruiters, employers NEW YORK — Someone is trying to sabotage your career. It's your online persona. With smaller budgets and...
Kelly Hite, left, and Sandy Love own and operate Central Florida PI in Orlando. "People have a concept of what you should look like, but people meet us and think it's wonderful. We're just hardworking women," Hite says.
By Ingrid Stegemoeller Tri-City Herald It's that time of year again when we all resolve to lose 5 pounds, eat more leafy greens and keep a better budget. If your resolution for 2009 is to find a new job...
Now: Construction-company president Then: House cleaner Current Position: Founder and president, Bohemia Construction Inc. First job: When I came to America in 1991, I didn't know much English, but I wasn't afraid to start looking for a job. I'd...
By Daneen Skube / Syndicated Columnist Q: My job pays well, and I'm grateful in this economy to have a job, but I feel I'm missing out on my ideal calling. In my daydreams I imagine changing the world,...
By EILEEN AJ CONNELLY The Associated Press NEW YORK — Catherine Olohan took a buyout from Verizon Communications last year after working for the telephone company for more than 30 years. She then promptly rolled over her pension into...
For more than 20 years, the trailblazing Professional Automotive Training Center has offered programs developed together with dealers and manufacturers. The center will soon begin an expansion project to keep up with growing enrollment demand.
Now: Teen, Tween and Parenting Coach Then: Bar/Bat Mitzvah Tutor Current Position: I am the founder of TheGiftedTeenCoach.com. I help families with gifted teens (often diagnosed with ADD/ADHD) release anxiety, frustration and confusion so they can enjoy better communication,...
By Robert Rodriguez McClatchy Newspapers FRESNO, Calif. — The faltering economy, tanking retail sales and a real-estate market rife with foreclosures didn't keep Ritsuko Miyazaki from launching a ceramic art store. "I know some people would think now is...
Game design has helped rekindle interest in computer science and become a hot new major. Now, game companies recruit armies from an array of disciplines to work in studios all over the world.
Whereas workers in some industries are being laid off by the thousands, in others - such as engineering, accounting, and nursing - new employees are being promised high-paying jobs sometimes more than a year before graduation.
Now: Company founder and CEO Then: Hop Picker Current position: Founder and CEO of Caron Architecture, a firm in Seattle and San Louis Obispo, Calif. First job: While attending high school, I worked as a hop picker on a...
Now: Business owner Then: Cashier at Nordstrom Current position: As owner of Champion Assistants in Kirkland, I help business owners implement sales and marketing strategies. We manage online shopping carts, Web design, and localization for internationally minded businesses. First...
Now: Job recruiter Then: Pharmacy helper Current position: Recruiter and retention specialist with Peterson Sullivan, a certified public accounting firm in downtown Seattle. First job: My first job was working in a pharmacy in New Orleans, my hometown. I...
Now: Director of global relocation, Microsoft Then: Mail bagger Current position: I'm responsible for the design and implementation of Microsoft's global program strategy, so I work in the U.S. and other countries in which we do business to keep...
Now: Owner, Go Go Green Garden Then: Bakery worker Current position: I plant edible gardens for people in their back or front yard, and teach them to grow and cook their own food using organic and heirloom seeds. First...
BY SUE SHELLENBARGER The Wall Street Journal Noting that my 19-year-old daughter seemed frustrated about career choices after changing college majors a few times, I did what any good helicopter parent would do: I bought her a career-testing and...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Newhouse News Service--> Q. I have an opportunity to take a job where the company is going against the grain of what my industry does. It's a risk, but this company is doing the...
Now: Co-owner, personal training studio Then: Clerk for dad's pharmacy Current position: Co-owner of Elite Fitness Training in downtown Bellevue, specializing in helping customers lose weight and tone up through one-on-one, circuit-style training. First job: At the beginning of...
Now: Construction exec Then: Bakery worker Current position: General manager of Shirey Handyman, an Issaquah-based company that provides maintenance, repair and small-remodel services to homeowners in the Seattle area. First job: Working at a bakery inside a grocery store...
The mousy pencil-pusher image is no more. Accountants speak the language of business, and they are much in demand. Students are flocking to enroll in programs.
Now: company president Then: budwood harvester Current position: President and co-founder, Sound Financial Partners, which creates sustainable investment strategies for women in transition due to divorce or the death of their husband or partner. First job: At 13, I...
Now: Company president Then: Staff writer Current position: Founder and president of Cypress Consulting, a business consulting, technology and creative-services firm. First job: A staff writer at Downtown Source, a free weekly tabloid publication featuring happenings, food, music and...
Now: company co-founder Then: assistant awning installer Current position: Principal and co-founder, 2130 Partners, an executive leadership development and education firm First job: helped the lead installers with building new awnings, assembling frames, installing awnings, taking them down, washing...
Now: company president Then: sales clerk Current position: President of www.betsytalbot.com, a coaching and training firm for women who own businesses. I work with "solo-preneurs." First job: At 16 I landed my first job as a sales clerk in...
Every day, Joey goes to work at Softchoice. He's been there a year. His officemates describe him as fairly calm, though he gets riled when there's a lot going on.
Grey Lundberg Inc. president started out as a paperboy at age 11.
Q: I want to go back to college but I don't think I'm smart enough. The job I want requires more college than I have. How can I figure out...
Freud asked only half the question. It's not just "What do women want? " No, it's broader than that. "What does everyone want? " is more to...
Due to their lack of experience, teens often encounter challenges while searching for summer jobs. With the school year about to end, many...
Competition for loans of $35,000 or less is stiffening, leading entrepreneurs who can't get funding through banks to look for alternatives.
"I've always been an outdoors person," says Rob Nodine. "I put myself through college working for the Bureau of Land Management as a wildland firefighter."
FORT WORTH, Texas -- From flipping burgers to watching over swimmers, the summer job has been a rite of passage for countless teenagers.
The future needs workers – lots of them.
Now: program director for Respiratory Therapy. Then: Inhalation Therapy trainee
Internships aren't just for college students. High-school students are pursuing them to gain experience and test-drive industries. While some internships for...
AARP is adding three federal government agencies and six private companies to its list of employers looking to hire people 50 and older...
Bothell High School senior Lanie Wait thought about a career in health care, but until she interned at a local nursing home this semester she wasn't sure. The course, part of the state's career- and technical-education program, focused her sights on nursing, a field with a critical worker shortage.
As the City of Seattle’s lead light rail engineer, Katherine Claeys has seen the project through three years of environmental impact planning and four years of construction.
Three years ago, when most of this year's college graduates were just finishing their freshman year, job prospects for those just entering the work force looked bleak.
With energy prices soaring and oil-company ranks graying, petroleum-engineering graduates have become a hot commodity. As a result, students...
Bryan LaComa, a designer at the sustainable landscaping company In Harmony, creates dozens of residential landscape plans each year.
After working in gyms for 26 years, Gina Berta opened her own personal-fitness studio, one that resembled a spa more than a weight room...
Now: marketing writer. Then: campus computer-lab help desk.
"I never thought my silly Internet addictions would actually be useful," says freelance writer and author Ariel Meadow Stallings. As a marketing manager on the software giant's staffing team, the Seattleite spends much of her time publishing "Microspotting" , a blog profiling some of Microsoft's most notable employees
For many workers, the desire or the need to change jobs is commonplace. Whether brought about by downsizing or a growing dissatisfaction with the trajectory of their careers or industries, many people have made a job switch or want to.
Now: President, Junglecity Network. Then: Salesperson at a boutique.
Dana Bagwell arrives early each morning at her job as a recruiter at a staffing firm. "When I'm at my desk, I focus on work and I don't waste time," the 21-year-old says. She figures her work ethic will come in handy as the economy edges closer to a recession. And she's more cautious with money: Bagwell just put off making plans for a vacation in Mexico.
Between 1994 and 2005, Laura Michalek owned and operated four vintage furniture shops in Seattle. A self-professed "junker," she'd put 60,000 miles on her car every year just trolling for antique treasure at estate sales and auctions. Somewhere along the way, she became sold on the idea of grabbing a microphone and working as a full-time auctioneer herself.
Daydreams are one thing. It's a piece of cake to make a living baking petits fours for weddings when it's just a white-aproned, sugar-rimmed fantasy. Reality means studying essential topics like business taxes, the merits of bags vs. boxes and which tents work best at farmers markets.
So you want to make music, act, produce films, design fashion, dance or write movies? No sweat. That is, if you tweak your thinking a bit. That includes eliminating the term "starving artist" from your vocabulary. For one thing, if you think that's what you're getting into when you pursue a creative career, well, that's what you'll get.
If you commute to work, chances are you know Adam Gehrke. During the past decade, his morning and afternoon traffic reports have dominated the airwaves on multiple radio stations around the Puget Sound.
Roughly a quarter of the nation's 637,000 aerospace workers could be eligible for retirement this year, raising fears that America could face a serious skills shortage in the factories that churn out commercial and military aircraft.
For chocoholic Jean Thompson, life is sweet. As co-owner and CEO of Seattle Chocolates, the 15-year-old company she and her husband first invested in eight years ago and became sole owners of in 2005, she has the delectable task of developing, marketing and packaging wholesale lines of truffles and premium chocolates.
Now: retired professional land surveyor. Then: Seattle Times paperboy.
Brian Herr is the ultimate temp. He's on the job before dawn, knows his way around complex machinery, large dogs and big animals, and works weekends and holidays. He'll even hire out for weddings but warns clients to "book the church, book the hall and book me ... not necessarily in that order."
Current position: president of HastyChef.com. First job: data entry for a direct-mail company.
Volcanoes, shipwrecks, seismic faults – for Joanna O'Neill, it's all in a day's work. As a marine geologist for Fugro Seafloor Surveys in downtown Seattle, she spends part of the year on land and part of the year at sea, creating topographic maps of the ocean floor.
Now: construction manager. Then: pot washer in a hotel.
Workers who make career resolutions – and create a plan to make them happen – can see benefits that pay off for years. Only 12 percent of workers made career-related resolutions at the beginning of 2006, but nearly three-quarters of those who did achieved their goals by the end of the year, a survey by staffing agency Accountemps found last January.
Now: Nonprofit executive. Then: Sales clerk
Certified Financial Planner Geleg Kyarsip has spent the past two decades helping people from all walks of life work toward their financial and retirement goals. In March of 2000, he founded Kyarsip Financial Advisors in downtown Seattle, a financial planning firm that charges clients by the hour rather than getting paid through commissions.
Now: Architectural interior designer. Then: McDonald's cashier.
Now: Director of education. Then: Singing box-office cashier.
Life is not so jolly for the 21st-century Santa Claus. He keeps his white gloved hands where parents can see them and buys liability insurance, just in case. He doesn't ask for names or where children live – that might arouse suspicion. He's given up the pipe, and the jelly belly might be next.
Now: Director of Northwest Builders Show. Then: Housekeeper.
When Patrick Angus studied art history at Western Washington University, he never imagined he'd wind up flexing his creative muscle in upscale retail. Today, as creative director of Mario's in downtown Seattle, he wears many hats. He manages the visual display of merchandise. He orchestrates marketing campaigns. He works with architects on remodeling plans. And he dreams up and helps his staff construct the whimsical window displays in the company's Seattle and Portland stores.
Now: Real-estate broker. Then: Display ad sales clerk.
Now: Green project manager. Then: Fruit cleaner.
Jana Scopis fell in love with event planning while she was in college. As a hotel management major at Central Washington University, she scooped up an internship in the catering department of a historic hotel in Texas, where she helped plan swanky weddings and plush parties. She spent the next decade working her way up the hotel-catering food chain, and in March of 2007, she became the director of catering and convention services at the W Seattle>, a position that involves selling, schmoozing, keeping dozens of balls in the air and planning some of Seattle's most lavish parties.
Now: Homebuilder. Then: Home-building student.
Out of work at age 63, Michelle Hartman found herself on the wrong side of the digital divide, able to use a computer to search the Internet but not much else.
Like many English majors, Laura Vanderpool found gainful employment working in corporate communications. During her six-year tenure in the marketing division of a Big Five accounting firm, the University of Washington alum cut her teeth writing "dry proposals and reports." When a corporate restructuring prompted her to jump ship in 2000, she landed in public relations, first at a doomed dot-com, then at socially progressive Parsons Public Relations in Seattle. In 2004 she became senior account manager of the nine-person, three-canine PR team, a job that entails acting as the agency's lead writer and helping environmentally conscious clients spread the word about their products and services.
Now: UW Alumni Association CEO. Then: home-driveway parking attendant.
Now: Charity executive. Then: Yogurt sales.
Roberta Browne grew up on what she refers to as "a steady diet of Looney Tunes cartoons and 'The Wonderful World of Disney.'" All her spare time in high school was spent drawing cartoon characters, and all her notebooks were covered with doodles. After getting a commercial illustration degree at Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto, she tried her hand at freelance illustration for two years – and wound up earning the bulk of her income by waitressing and bartending. Feeling off her game, she returned to school for animation and, upon graduating, landed her first job as an animator. A decade later, in May of 2007, Browne joined Bungie Studios in Kirkland, where she works as a lead animator, a job that involves everything from 3-D software to brainstorming sessions to pratfalls.
Now: President and CEO. Then: Sales clerk.
Now: Wildlife rehabilitator. Then: Supermarket courtesy clerk.
Robin Young needed extra spending money during her winter vacation, so at 16 years old she took a holiday job at jewelry store Something Silver in Portland. Ten years later, after working for the company during breaks from school, she's the manager of the Seattle-based chain's store at Bellevue Square.
Now: Executive. Then: Laborer
Robert Margoshes spent his twenties performing in rock bands. But an opportunity to work as a roadie for a headlining act made him realize he preferred working behind the scenes to playing on stage. After spending more than a decade on the road as a lighting technician for what he calls "giant corporate rock shows," he put down roots in Seattle. Today he works as technical director of the historic Moore Theatre, ensuring that the lighting, sound and special effects of each performance go off without a hitch.
We've all heard the stories about awful bosses: The moody, self-important autocrats who take credit for our accomplishments and blame us for their mistakes. The petty tyrants. The bullies. What we rarely hear about, however, are the decent bosses. The ones who not only make our work life better, but in some cases they make us better.
This company president started out his career delivering The Seattle Times.
These aren't just Tupperware parties anymore. As part of a home-based business boom, some women entrepreneurs are moving from corporate America into a shop-from-home, in-your-home, high-end product business to gain economic independence and job autonomy.
Now: company owner. Then: janitor.
At Topps Salon Day Spa, owner Suzanne Van Houten is going for a look that is "very seamless." Clients are greeted by name and offered something to drink before their hair, skin or nails get a tuneup. A list of values – "creativity, commitment, integrity, loyalty, trust, fun" – is displayed throughout the small Oakland salon.
Like many animal-loving kids, Jamie Pflughoeft grew up with dogs, cats, and birds for pets and dreamed of working with animals someday. In college, she studied animal behavior while working as a pet sitter and dog walker on the side. Today, as top dog of Cowbelly Pet Photography, she snaps the mugs of hundreds of critters a year, turning many of them into brightly colored, digitally enhanced artwork that she's dubbed Decopaw.
Now: company owner. Then: busboy.
Let's consider the problem of Alex Hillman, 23, Web entrepreneur, quasi-college student, and architect of the Philadelphia version of an international trend known as co-working. "Three months working at my house, I was talking to the cat, and I don't even have a cat," Hillman said, describing what had happened after he quit his job as a Web designer in December. "I was going crazy without the socializing."
Robert Holland caught the baking bug at an early age. As a fresh-faced teen, he landed a job making bread by hand at the family-run Sanchioli Brothers Bakery in Pittsburgh, Pa., an 85-year-old cornerstone of the city's Little Italy district. Today he's head baker at the wholesale location of Seattle's Grand Central Bakery, where he manages the production of thousands of artisan breads each day, overseeing a staff of two dozen who shape each loaf by hand.
This Bellevue-based novelist’s first job was as a carhop.
Now: CEO. Then: Milkman.
Sports buff Ryan Madayag grew up watching Mariners and Seahawks games at the Kingdome. As a teen, he played running back for the Inglemoor High School Vikings, where he broke the school's rushing record. In 2003, the University of Washington communications graduate scored even bigger, landing an internship in the Seattle Seahawks' Fan Development Department.
Now: Executive. Then: Dining-room server at a retirement community.
Eric Quint stumbled into his career as a childproofer six years ago when a cousin showed him all the precautions he'd installed to keep his baby safe. Quint was impressed with the work – until his cousin mentioned how much it cost. "I could do the job way better and for less money," Quint said he thought at the time. "I knew I had the ability."
Now: Mayor of Auburn Then: Paperboy
Private-sector and government workers often like the idea of putting their skills to use for the greater good of society but really don't understand the world of nonprofits.
Edwina Uehara was initially what she calls "a reluctant administrator." She didn't come to the University of Washington School of Social Work 17 years ago in search of a deanship; she came to be a professor, a path she pursued with "great gusto," earning the university's Distinguished Teaching Award in 1996.
Now: Managing partner. Then: Italian delicatessen counter clerk.
LaVonne "Bonnie" McAdams' first visit with a geriatric specialist lasted an hour. It was time well spent. Her doctor changed several prescriptions...
This executive director started out as support staff.
When Seattle created its Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) unit in 2004, Brian Stampfl wasted no time applying for one of the highly coveted positions. With a resume that included service as a police officer for roughly a decade, a police-academy instructor for almost two years and a detective in Seattle's sexual assault and child abuse unit for three years, he had little trouble nabbing the job. Now, as one of the city's six full-time CSI detectives, he spends his weeks combing violent crime scenes for evidence and documenting that evidence for court.
Find out what valuable skills this company founder learned at her first job, as a lifeguard.
As demand for assistants soars, dentists hope potential employees will love their job as much as Cynthia Gaetz does.
Now: Company founder and CEO Then: Concessions worker Current position: Founder and CEO of Delicious Planet, a Seattle-based gourmet home-delivery service First job: Working in concessions for Arizona State University What I learned: I learned average Americans eat and...
After 15 years of working in shipping and receiving for Costco, Ronel Jones decided it was time he changed gears. So in 2002, this Harley-Davidson enthusiast took a job selling motorcycles at Downtown Harley-Davidson in Tukwila, blending his passion with a paycheck.
Now: Business owner Then: Dancing snowman Current position: Owner of Jim Webber H.R. Training and Consulting First job: Dancing snowman at Disneyland's Fantasy on Parade when I was in high school. What I learned: In addition to learning how...
Once they retire — and often several years before — investors typically shift out of stocks and into bonds in an effort to boost income and reduce risk.
Susan Mattingly grew up speaking and writing in English and Spanish because her Cuban-born mother wanted to keep the family's Latino heritage alive. Now, at 40, Mattingly finds her fluency in a second language in demand as a telephone agent for Arise Virtual Solutions, a call center that provides customer service for about 40 companies across the country.
Now: Boutique owner Then: Nurse's aide Current position: Owner of Clementine Shoes, Bags & Accessories in Seattle First job: My brother's girlfriend helped me get a job with her employer when I was just 15 1/2. I was a...
Doug Hand worked in salmon processing, telecommunications, exercise equipment and book publishing before he alit on a career that really ignited his interest: He works as a career firefighter for the city of Renton, a position he's held for the past year and a half.
Read what this company president learned during her first job: selling clothes at Nordstrom.
When it comes to finding enough qualified recruits to fill its rank-and-file, the long arm of local law enforcement is working harder than ever before.
Doug Hoselton Now: Company president Then: Natural-gas drilling-crew member Current position: President of Sandler Sales Institute of Washington...
For all the college graduates whose degrees in Catholic studies or history of medicine haven't attracted a lot of jobs-with-benefits offers, Amy Wolfe has a suggestion: Learn a trade.
Bryan Lowe Now: Programming executive Then: Paperboy Current position: Program director of 98. 1-KING FM First job: Delivering newspapers.
When Marge Ball retired in 2002 from Coast Community College District in Costa Mesa, Calif., she planned to spend her time traveling, not for leisure but for business.
Sidira Sisich hadn't planned to work as a retail buyer. But a job managing a small boutique during college sold her on the idea. So in 2001, after graduation, she began to work for Macy's, where she's currently a buyer for juniors.
Dennis Dunphy Now: Attorney Then: Log peeler Current position: Shareholder and litigator in the Seattle office of the law firm Schwabe...
Michele Scoleri has managed to spin her love of music into a two-decade career. Since 2000, this former New York talent agent has been producing events such as Bumbershoot and the temporarily on-hiatus Summer Nights Concert Series for One Reel , Seattle's arts and event-production powerhouse.
Jim Anderson Now: Company president and CEO Then: Nursery worker Current position: President and CEO of Adaptis, a health-care-outsourcing...
Carpenter ants, leaky roofs and dry rot are Don McFeron's bread and butter. Scouring houses for such hazards and preparing inspection reports...
Currently president and CEO, Wattenbarger Architects. First job: Gas-station attendant in Bellevue.
Kelly Cline's photographs pop up all over the place — in grocery stores, on Web sites, even splashed on the wall of a supermarket in Serbia.
Rolf Hokansson's horticultural career didn't blossom until later in life. After 30 years working as a social-service administrator for the state's Department of Social and Health Services, he decided he wanted to work outdoors with plants.
T. Brandon Gillespie Now: Restaurant owner Then: Supermarket employee Current position: Proprietor, Be... Food & Wine in West Seattle...
While he's researched and written his fair share of scientific papers, conservationist Bret Sellers realized early in his career that he'd have more impact on the biological community—and the endangered animal species he so revered—by working at a zoo.
Current position: Co-founder and principal of Chameleon Technologies in Kirkland, a technical-staffing and professional-services company.
Renee Smiley Now: Tire-store assistant manager Then: Tire-store greeter Current position: Assistant manager, Les Schwab Tire Centers. The job includes assessing...
Job hunters who are in the market for a sales position may want to put down their personal electronic devices and start polishing up their...
Although Deborah Jacobs loved to read as a child, she took a page from her mother, who told her, "Get your head out of that book and go ride your bike outside." Jacobs knew at an early age that she wanted to serve her local community.
Current position: President of Sleep Country USA. First job: Bartender
Caring, compassion and teamwork are a must, but in these units it's also essential that you act swiftly and decisively in situations that can change rapidly.
Paul Long Now: Bank branch manager and financial specialist Then: Cook at a burger joint Current position: Branch manager for U.S. Bank, Tukwila Trading Co...
With the cruise craze in Seattle about to launch its busy summer season, there's a groundswell of employment on the open waters aimed at...
Travel enthusiast Chrissy Hyde has found a way to get the world to come to her. For the past year, she’s worked as deputy director of the International Visitor Program at the World Affairs Council, a U.S. State Department program designed to foster greater cross-cultural understanding
First job: Child entrepreneur. Current position: CEO of ZAAZ, an interactive agency serving clients worldwide.
Chase Jarvis Now: Photographer Then: Sold golf balls and lemonade Current position: Photographer whose work is featured by brands such as...
Want to leave the cubicle life behind, but not really sure how to do it? Michelle Goodman, former "wage slave" turned successful Seattle-based...
Former ski instructor and river rafting guide Tami St. Paul has built a career on her love of the outdoors. For the past six and a half years, she's worked as an apprenticeship coordinator for the Operating Engineers Regional Training Program of Western and Central Washington.
Owner of Conexión Marketing LLC, a Seattle agency that targets Hispanics in the Puget Sound region.
Eric Knudson Now: Marketing executive Then: Tennis teacher Current position: Principal of Basecamp Communications, a strategic marketing...
Worried about getting aced out of summer jobs, Shorecrest High School tennis buddies Marco Dehmel and Doug Jambor devised their own doubles plan: a tennis racquet-stringing business they call "D-Jam."
Guyer makes a living making vacant Seattle homes more inviting to potential buyers by adding furniture and decorative flourishes she finds on the sale racks.
Current position: Insurance-company owner. First job: Salesperson/cashier.
Current position: President of Bellevue-based The Hacker Group, a direct advertising agency. First job: grocery bagger.
College graduates often joke that they can always serve up lattes if they can't get a job in their field. But that's probably not an issue this year. Nationwide, employers are showing more interest in hiring those with fresh diplomas than in years past, particularly in hot fields like high-tech, nursing or accounting.
Therese Littleton, director of curatorial affairs, Science Fiction Museum A unique background and a lifelong love for science fiction landed Therese Littleton one of the most coveted museum jobs available.
My First Job: Annie Jacobsen, owner/founder of Assisted Transitions, a Seattle move-management company that streamlines the moving process.
Annie Jacobsen, Owner/founder of Assisted Transitions, a Seattle move-management company that streamlines the moving process.
Current position: Executive director, Built Green of King and Snohomish Counties, a nonprofit organization that promotes environmentally friendly homebuilding practices.
Lisa Rongren started her career as a restaurant server at Seattle's Lampreia. She's now the wine director/sommelier of Ray's Boathouse, helping the restaurant's patrons choose from their vast selection of wines.
Current position: Co-founder, CE0 and president, Seattle-based Matter Group, creator of the Xeko adventure game.
When it comes to dollars and cents, nearly 2 million insurance customers count on Margaret Meister's know-how when they buy an insurance policy or make a claim involving Bellevue-based Symetra Financial.
Current position: Vice president sales and marketing, GoMobile Advertising, a Kent-based marketing and promotion company.
For more than 10 years, Alex Draper has had a hand in making some of the world's most innovative snowboards. As snowboarding director for K2 Sports, Draper has the enviable job of leading the team that decides what snow tools everyone will be coveting next winter.
Current position: President and chief operating officer of The Lexas Cos., which focuses on the development of high-quality real-estate investments, including high-rise multifamily projects, land development and condominium conversions.
Current position: Executive managing director, Greater Seattle Chapter of eWomenNetwork, an international business-networking organization for women.
For 30 years, Rick Steves has been one of America's foremost authorities on traveling to Europe. But, as the Edmonds-based Steves describes it, trying to make a career out of travel writing is anything but a vacation.
Current position: Owner and creator of Karan Dannenberg Clothier a nine-year-old women's clothing boutique in Seattle's Belltown neighborhood that she said she created "on a wing, a prayer, a dream and my American Express card."
Current position: Owner of GreenWorks Realty and GreenWorks Development Group, which specialize in eco-friendly homes.
Running a major radio station is a lot of fun, and a lot of work. Shawn Stewart, program director for Seattle's KMTT-FM (103.7) "The Mountain," describes how she landed her job in radio and how music lovers can get their feet in the door at a station.
Current position: Vice president of marketing and sales for TalkingRain Beverage Co.
Current position: Principal, Belt Collins Northwest
Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos is looking for a few good rocketeers and has broken a long silence to get their attention.
A love for cinema led to a job making commercials for StraightEIGHT films founder Matthew J. Clark. And being a cameraman is just one of the job's prerequisites.
Current position: Owner and therapist at Coppersmith Physical Therapy in Seattle and also on the physical-therapy faculty at the University of Washington.
Current position: Partner, Lorig Associates.
Communication skills, patience and a love for video gaming are essential for James Sakshaug's job as a product tester for Nintendo.
Current position: Managing director.
Current position: CEO, CollegeGear.com
Besides a love for baseball, this perk-filled job requires marketing skills, people skills and some late hours.
Autumn Martin, looking younger than her 25 years in a purple sweater, slippers and a hairnet, insists that melting chunks of chocolate into her chili is not disgusting. Neither is sprinkling it on a salad, she says, or spicing baked cauliflower with little chocolate nibs. Right.
Current position: Lead release technician
Current position: Interior designer and owner
Stephanie Brown would rather sell pressure cookers than work in one. But during the holidays, things heat up at her Kitchen N Things shop in Ballard as hundreds of beginning bakers and seasoned foodies arrive looking for everything from cooking coaching to the latest gourmet gadgets.
Current position: Co-founder and general manager of The Tasting Room.
Current position: Current position: Executive director, Northwest Crafts Alliance.
Current position: Assistant director.
Current position: President, Schuchart Corp.
Current position: Co-founder and director of Electronic Content Management, Serials Solutions.
If you were the richest person in the world out to solve some of the hardest problems on the planet, who would you put on your team? The newest members of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation include a World Bank vice president, a genetic engineer from seed giant Monsanto, the founder of an Internet company in Africa, and the former chief executive of a $100 million cattle-breeding company.
Current position: Executive vice president and chief lending officer
Current position: Convention sales manager
Bethany Richards' customers come to her for bars, rings that sing and the occasional bling. And some just want a little help trying to figure out their voice mail.
Current position: Freelance writer and writing coach
Have you ever pondered a purchase and told yourself, "Sure, these shoes (skirt, pants, jacket) are expensive, but they're an investment." Clothes are a kick, but are they really a factor in getting that next promotion or that better job?
Current position: President of Pioneer Organics
Seattle could become the new Detroit. A once-proud hub of innovation left to languish as brilliant people, new ideas and dazzling products bubble up elsewhere. An urban wasteland that's left wondering as Detroit was with cars how it lost its mojo with software and the Internet.
Current position: Regional Business Banking manager.
When her 14-year career with Ford folded during downsizing late last year, Susan Hamilton figured she had three options: "I could be angry at Ford; throw myself a pity party; or take this as an opportunity that most people don't get a chance to start something new," Hamilton says.
Current position: Guest services manager.
Current position: Executive director.
Current position: Career counselor.
Contrary to what many might think, customer-service representatives don't get yelled at by frustrated customers all day long. Most calls that representatives in Bellevue's Verizon Wireless call center deal with concern less-emotional issues such as changing price plans, finding out how many minutes are used, asking about new products and how to add or remove functions.
Current position: Vice president for instruction, chief academic officer of Edmonds Community College.
After 26 years of driving school buses, Rebecca Lopes, 52, is a pro. The Laidlaw employee trains new drivers and has even gotten to know the families of the children on her routes.
It's just before 7 a.m. on Sunday morning, and Erik Jensen has been working for hours, already on his second day of vacation from his graphic-design job.
Current position: Manage communications for the law offices of Graham Lundberg & Peschel.
Current position: President and founder of Parsons Public Relations, a communications firm that works with companies and organizations committed to sustainability, specifically within the design, horticulture and green-building industries.
Current position: The city of Bothell's economic-development manager/assistant to the city manager.
In an age when almost every label on every product seems to proclaim, "Made in China," it would be an entirely different story if buildings had labels.
Current position: Chief executive and founder, Receivables Performance Management (RPM), a Bothell-based accounts-receivables management company.
Current position: Director of strategic development, McKinstry Co., a Seattle mechanical and electrical contractor.
Current position: President, The Frause Group, a Seattle-based public relations, marketing and business-analysis firm.
Current position: Executive vice president of Allyis, a technical-consulting and staffing-services company that manages Web and technology personnel.
Current position: President, Shirey Contracting, a family-owned company specializing in custom homes and commercial facilities.
Current position: Caregiving marketing, employee recruitment and retention for Home Care Associates, a division of Jewish Family Services.
Current position: Owner of Tap House Grill and general partner at Trader Vic's, both in Bellevue.
You won't find their feat in the record books, but Seattle brothers Sig and Gunars Rauda have "scaled" Mount Everest. They've also scaled Mount Rainier, Swedish Medical Center and the West Seattle Bridge all under the bright lights of their Lake City architectural model-building shop. Armed with beefy band saws and precise laser-cutters, these two run Rauda Scale Models.
Current position: Clinic manager and physical therapist at the Apple Physical Therapy Seattle clinic.
Jennifer Peterson, 31, has closed seven residential real-estate deals since April 2005, the month she got her real-estate license and joined ReMax Metro Associates in Seattle. As new-agent stories go, she's had unusual success in the first year. The average real-estate agent in the U.S. completes about six deals a year, the National Association of Realtors says.
Current position: Vice president, McKinstry Essention, a Seattle-based facilities management company.
With summer's busy travel season just days away from takeoff, shops and eateries at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport are revving their hiring engines with jobs for on-the-go salespeople who want to keep their feet on the ground. This spring "is the most robust hiring season since pre-9/11," says Airport Jobs Program manager Ruth Westerbeck.
Current position: Admissions adviser, Pima Medical Institute Seattle.
Current position: Shareholder in Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt.
Current position: Executive director, Providence ElderPlace Seattle.
Current position: Principal, Group Design Leader, MulvannyG2 Architecture, Bellevue.
Over her 20-year career at The Westin in downtown Seattle, Kim Williams has puffed more pillows than she can count — but her job is anything but cushy. As one of the 14,157 housecleaners serving hotel and motel guests in the greater King/Snohomish counties area, Williams is part of the team that has the often grueling task of tidying rooms for many of the nearly 8.73 million overnight guests King County sees each year. In downtown Seattle alone, this covers 9,797 nightly guest rooms.
Current position: General manager, Trader Vic's Bellevue Restaurant.
Current position: Executive vice president consulting, Baldwin Resource Group in Bellevue, a diversified professional-services firm that specializes in business consulting, risk management, commercial insurance and employee-benefits and wealth management.
For many older Americans, finding a doctor who specializes in caring for their myriad of chronic later-life aches is as much a pain as the ailments themselves. And from the looks of it, there's no cure in sight for the anemic number of physicians who specialize in geriatrics. But that means good career opportunities for such doctors, making it another area of demand in the field of health care, which has been best-known to job seekers in recent years as a place to find work as a nurse.
Current position: Senior associate, PRR, a communications, marketing, public-relations, design and public-affairs consultancy, with offices in Seattle and Washington, D.C.
Current position: CEO, McKinstry Co., a locally owned, 45-year-old mechanical and electrical contractor with about 1,000 employees in the Pacific Northwest. McKinstry was co-founded by his father, George L. Allen.
Current position: Clinical director and owner of Medifit Health Clinic in Seattle, providing chiropractic kinesiology, massage therapy and personal body retraining and conditioning.
Miserable at work? Take a number. Just half of all Americans are happy with their jobs, according to a significant study on work-force trends last year.
Current position: Managing principal at Riddell Williams, representing businesses in labor and employment matters.
YouthForce's small downtown Seattle office is about the last place you'd expect to find Donald Trump. Sure enough, though, there the billionaire business mogul stands, perched atop a ledge and surrounded by electric hues of paint that would make Martha Stewart cower behind a peck of pressed pansies.
Current position: Director of Marketing/Sales at Process Heating; also president of the Sodo Business Association.
The first time Paul Rossman worked as a ski instructor, he was a ninth-grader teaching people how get through icy moguls on a hill with a 200-foot vertical drop and four rope tows in Michigan.
Current position: Co-founder and owner of CHEKWellness.com, a Bellevue-based online and personal service provider of lifestyle-enhancing exercise, nutrition and stress-reduction programs.
n a clear day, Sean O'Connor can sometimes see all of Puget Sound and Mount Rainier from his office. "I love the flying, and up in this area a lot of the flying is really beautiful," says O'Connor, a captain for Horizon Air, the Seattle-based regional carrier that flies throughout the Northwest and California.
Current position: Owner of The Crepe Cafe & Wine Bar, a gourmet creperie in the Ravenna neighborhood of Seattle.
Current position: Director of community relations for Providence Hospice of Seattle.
Current position: Chief of police, University of Washington Police Department, which has more than 100 staff members, including 51 commissioned police officers.
Current position: Founder and chief digital strategist of Brand Digital a small team of digital marketing experts in Seattle that wants to help small and midsize businesses succeed on the Internet.
Current position: Founder of WonderChess, a Seattle company that creates learning kits for kids aimed at making chess fun.
The demand is strong and the money may be good, but it doesn't come easy. Construction project management is not a casual 9-to-5 job; it's not the kind of work you leave behind at the end of the day.
First job / current position: Teen business-development manager at YouthForce in Seattle.
Current position: Instructor in the veterinary-assistant program at Pima Medical Institute, Seattle.
Current position: Chairman and CEO, John L. Scott Real Estate, a Seattle-based company with more than 130 offices in Washington, Oregon and Idaho.
Decking halls and trimming trees has been adding more jingle to workers' pockets this holiday season — and those in the Puget Sound area's Christmas-decoration business expect a sleigh-full of similar jobs again next season.
Current position: 46th Commander and District Engineer, Seattle District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Mike Uppinghouse wasn't born with skin any thicker than most kids. But over the past two seasons working youth soccer matches sometimes with irate coaches in his face and cutthroat parents behind his back the 14-year-old Shoreline youth has built up his resistance to heckling, beefed up his self-confidence, and added some ink on his early résumé while earning about 20 bucks a game to boot.
Current position: Senior superintendent at Skanska USA Building, one of the largest general contractors in the Pacific Northwest.
Current position: Business Development Manager, Washburn Communication, a technology marketing company in Bellevue that offers marketing and related services for clients primarily in the technology industry.
Current position: Partner, Point B Solutions Group, a professional-services firm specializing in project leadership. Point B has practices in Seattle, Portland, Denver and Phoenix.
Current position: Interior designer and owner of Kelly McCombs Timeless Interiors, designing home and business interiors, landscapes and furniture, and running a Seattle showroom.
Current position: President and CEO of Essential Baking Co., an artisan, organic bakery with two cafes in Seattle.
Steve Ballmer, president and CEO of Microsoft, has got one. His boss, Bill Gates, doesn't. But President Bush has one, just like Phil Knight, chairman of Nike.
Current position: Co-owner, Olympic Hot Tub Co., with four stores in the Puget Sound region and a fifth opening in December.
Current position: Owner of Slo Joe's Bigtime Backyard Barbecue in Seattle.
Lara McCluskey was 700 feet up a 1,000-foot climb up a rock wall, leading two students on their first such excursion. The clouds began to build, and then it started hailing. There was a flash of lightning and six seconds later, a clap of thunder.
Current position: Chief meteorologist at KING-TV and author of several books, of which "Mountain Weather" is the most recent.
People's eyes usually glaze over when Microsoft software test engineer Alex MacLeod, 32, talks about what he does for a living. And when he visits his mother, he rarely brings up the topic.
Current position: President, owner and founder of both the Sleeping Lady Mountain Retreat in Leavenworth Valley, and of the Icicle Broadcasting Co.
Current position: Administrator of the WorkSource offices in Auburn and Renton for the Washington state Employment Security Department, working with South King County job seekers and business.
Current position: Senior vice president, Integra Telecom of Washington.
Current position: Executive director, Providence O'Christmas Trees, an annual holiday event (Nov. 30) to celebrate caring services that enhance the lives of those in need through health care, housing and hospice.
Current position: Senior vice president marketing, U.S. Assessments & Testing Group, Pearson Education, a global educational publishing and testing company.
Flecks of paint speckled Melvin Bradford's face as he looked up at the spire towering over historic Immanuel Lutheran Church in the South Lake Union area. Bradford says that painting the spire's cross as he stood in the cage of a boom crane stretched 110 feet above the parking lot was the most difficult part of the seven-week-long project.
Current position: General manager of the Everett Events Center, a 10,000-seat arena in downtown Everett that opened in 2003.
Current position: President and CEO of Scan Design, a Bellevue-based chain of furniture stores.
Current position: Owner, TiniBigs Lounge & Watertown, Spot Tail Salmon Guide fishing guide and auctioneer.
During the day, they work such jobs as forklift operator, part-time cashier, drum instructor and running a recording studio. At night and on weekends, they become Rumbeggae, a popular four-piece Mexican band that moved to the Seattle area from Veracruz a few years ago.
Current position: Vice president and dental director, Washington Dental Service, which serves about 2 million residents statewide.
Current position: President and founder of Medina-based BrandSolutions, which works with companies and nonprofits in developing, implementing and managing brand identities.
When presidents visit other nations besides being escorted by an entourage of bodyguards and officials they often are accompanied by interpreters. So in 1978 when then-President Carter was to give a speech in West Berlin, he asked his interpreter to write a line in German that would stir up the crowd like President Kennedy did in 1963 with his historic "Ich bin ein Berliner."
Current position: Owner and line cook, Cafe Lago.
There's only a couple of workers among the several dozen on the 2200 Westlake construction site, near Westlake Avenue and Denny Way, who can get away with not wearing a hard hat. One of them is Willie Steinberg, who operates one of the site's two tower cranes, which perch like giant one-legged birds above building sites all over the area.
Current position: Retired after a 28-year career as a daily newspaper editor and seven years in public relations.
Current position: President of Ergo, a company in Carnation that develops ergonomic bicycle seats, and president and founder of Daedalus, an industrial-design firm.
Used to be, job titles didn't get much less hip than "insurance agent." Often it was a guy who worked long hours in a small office and had to make "cold calls" or go door-to-door, clutching a briefcase like a secret agent and trying to ignore all the "No thanks" he heard and doors being closed in his face.
Current position: Owner of Media Skills Training in Seattle, a company that helps business owners, CEOs and management teams improve their performance during interviews, speeches and presentations.
Current position: President and CEO, EvergreenBank.
Bill Montgomery believes that if the Boy Scouts of America can keep a kid through his first year of Scouting, he'll stick with the program till he's 18. Or maybe a teensy bit longer. Montgomery has been registered with the Scouts since he was 8. This summer, he turns 66.
Current position: Makeup man at KCTS-TV.
Current position: Campus director of Pima Medical Institute in Renton, a private medical-vocational school.
"It's a pretty laid-back job, but sometimes it hits the fan," says David Leask, whose "office" is the tower perched just south of midspan on the east side of the Ballard Bridge.
When Nettie Dokes moved to Seattle from Mississippi in 1987, she found a job as a lab manager that paid $9 an hour. That didn't seem like much money for someone with a college degree in laboratory technology.
It's prom season and Kristi Forcier has more dates booked than Paris Hilton. (In fact, given the nature of her job, one of Forcier's bookings could be Paris Hilton.) Forcier is a limousine chauffeur.
A new research analysis completed by Salary.com reveals that today's 5.4 million stay-at-home moms would earn $131,471 in annual salary, including overtime pay, if paid in cash in addition to the steady flow of rewarding hugs and kisses from their children.
"Lake Union used to be surrounded with boatyards," laments Dave Mullens, a shipwright and instructor for Seattle Central Community College's boat-building program.
By Scott McCredie Special to The Seattle Times CHAD COLEMAN / SPECIAL TO THE SEATTLE TIMES Five months ago, right on cue when he turned 65, Larry Otos retired. For the previous 50 years or so, give or take...
By Sandy Dunham Special to The Seattle Times KEN LAMBERT / THE SEATTLE TIMES In Rhonda Simmons' ideal world, the unemployment rate would be 0.0 percent, teachers would be valued above movie stars, schools would connect better with the...
Gary Watts wants to work as a fire dancer. He has the qualifications: rhythmic skill, a few years' experience, a burning desire (ha!) and a 6-foot-long staff with flames shooting from each end. Try selling that at a job fair.
When Shakespeare penned "Hamlet" he tried to warn us: "Neither a borrower, nor a lender be." Lucky thing for bill collectors that many folks ignore that advice.
On a beautiful blue-sky day, the job of a road-construction worker can look mighty appealing fresh air, hands-on labor, burly tools ... and cool orange vests. But those crew members aren't just working the sunny side of the street.
Had she been given a choice, Kirsten Franklin-Temple of Seattle would have gladly chosen running water over electricity. She wasn't given a choice, however; she had to live with neither. Franklin-Temple, 29, spent two years after graduating from college working as a Peace Corps volunteer in the West African nation of Gabon.
Erin Anderson is living just above King County's poverty level while working 40 hours a It's not the ideal financial situation for a recent college graduate, but Anderson is less concerned about money and more concerned about contributing her time to an organization she is passionate about.
"Retirement's not all it's cracked up to be," said former school secretary Jo Madison. "You get bored and need something to look forward to. Mindless days and going to bingo isn't my idea of living at 55. I want to do things that matter."
Diane McDonald, business lawyer, financial planner, college professor and author of Personal Finance: Tools for Decision Making (1999, Southwestern Publishing), enlightens us: "Mandatory retirement is quickly becoming an archaic dinosaur.
When the first career counseling client told me he had been on the Atkins diet since he lost his job, I thought it was a good move since he was over 50 and seriously needed to take off pounds. I didn't pay it much mind until a few weeks later when another executive, who'd just become a client, mentioned that he was doing the same thing.
Okay, admit it. You hate job-hunting. Lots and lots of people feel that way. In fact, I think I'm a lone soldier because I actually like job hunting. Too often discouraged job hunters project their gloomy, depressed attitude to those around them.
"Every spring and summer we get flooded with thousands of resumes, all saying how much they want to work at Nike," reports a V.P. involved with Nike recruiting. "New grads enthusiastically state how they think Nike is the 'coolest.' Their fatal mistake," he continues, "is that they never elaborate on how they can keep us great.
Top executives have strong opinions on how people sabotage their own careers. The 2002 national CEO top executive survey on promotions, career paths and hiring decisions was a national study I conducted to identify traits, ideals and characteristics that successful leaders seek in developing their workforce.
When I met Sarah, her very first question was "Do you think anyone would hire me? I've never worked a day in my life." Sarah had never been paid, but she was quite accomplished. She had organized major fundraisers, special events and large three-day conferences.
Ending the meeting: At the end of a business meeting, the organizer summarizes the decisions the group has made, lists the next steps, and assigns action items or tasks to participants. Typically, all action items should be carried out by people who attended the meeting, or people who report to them.
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