Career Backup Plans - Part Two - Page 2

Oct 20, 2007

George Spafford

References make a dramatic difference when trying to talk to the right people about a career opportunity. Don’t skip developing and maintaining a network of contacts when times are good because they will become vital if a career change is needed.

Job Sites

Being in IT we have many great job sites that can help us contact prospective employers. Sites such as,, and have proven track records. These sites are expanding and are offering premium fee-based and free services. Take the time to understand their offerings and craft your responses to their questions in a manner that maximizes employer interest.

Be very careful when putting in salary expectations, whether you want full-time only or will consider contract work, etc. These are all filtering questions and they may very well exclude you from positions that you would have considered had you only known that they existed.


Some bemoan recruiters but the truth is they serve a very important role in that they can leverage networks of employers and job seekers and broker meetings. In return for their efforts they often get some percentage of the starting salary paid by the employer. Take the time to identify local, regional and, if relevant, national recruiters that can help you in your journey.


Searching for a new job can be stressful. While it is easy to focus on the logical side of the search, it also helps to realize that there are variables outside of your control. Rather than dwell on them, focus on the positive aspects and where you want to go. It’s all too easy to slip into depression and lash out unless you direct your energies to creative goals. Planning can help you do just this.

In closing, changing careers can be a welcome, or unwelcome, opportunity. By preparing for it and choosing the paths that you will follow then you are reducing the number of decisions that you must make in a rush. In the end, where you go from here is entirely up to you.

George Spafford is a Principal Consultant with Pepperweed Consulting and a long-time IT professional. George's professional focus is on compliance, security, management and overall process improvement.

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