February 17, 2009

How to find an interesting and fantastic job

While it’s really scary to be unemployed, it can be exciting to realize that this is my chance to start over and do something that really suits my interest. With that in my mind, I’ve had some luck on several fronts.

Exercise and animals
I had a dog my whole life growing up, but there is just no way I could have had one with my job in consulting; I traveled too much and worked too many hours. Boyfriend is similarly desperate for a dog, and we’ve thought about jointly getting one… but we don’t work opposite hours so the fact that there are two of us actually doesn’t help at all. However, with a lot of free time during the day, I have considered that I could get a dog and train it now, and then limit my job search to opportunities that would allow me to have a dog. My apartment building is one of the rare buildings in New York that is pet friendly, and not only do I live very close to both Riverside Park and Central Park, but there is a small one-block park just out the front door of my building. It’s a fantastic place for a pet… but do I really want to limit my job search? I came up with a better solution. I posted an ad on Craigslist, explaining that while I’m not a professional, I love dogs and love walking/running. Now, I get paid to do both – I’ve found a couple who wants me to walk their big, beautiful, friendly dog twice a week while they’re at work. It’s a temporary solution to my dog issue, as I won’t be able to do it once I find a real job, but I’m still super excited to stay busy and make a little bit of money by combining two things I love 🙂

Drinking and friends
Come on, my blog is called Absolut(ly) Fit; I can’t leave out the Absolut part! While I haven’t applied to any liquor companies (yet), I’m currently helping out a friend who has a startup all-natural energy drink company. It’s giving me more experience with distribution and marketing (two things I really like but didn’t get a ton of experience with in my consulting job), and also giving me some valuable insight into consumer products, specifically the beverage industry. I’ve also put my name in the hat for a full-time job as a corporate strategy analyst at a major beverage company, where one of my best friends from freshman year of college (who I didn’t stay in touch with until now) also works. We grabbed coffee yesterday at this great Ukrainian cafe in the village, where she told me all about the job (sounds phenomenal!) and we caught up on life as well. Turns out after I left NYU, she became good friends with my current roommate, so now all three of us are trying to make plans to get together on a more regular basis. A (kind of) new friend and a (potential) new job? Wonderful.

I’ve talked a lot about travel, but I’m not sure I’ve ever really talked about my odd fascination with the airline industry. In school, I took an airline management course that I found absolutely fascinating, and if I hadn’t already accepted my job offer with the consulting firm, I would have strongly considered applying to airlines. Now I have that chance, and after just one cover letter/application, I’m scheduled for a full day of interviews for a revenue management position at one of my favorite airlines. The job sounds absolutely fascinating, and will build on the quant skills I already have while also enhancing them and giving me airline industry experience. The job is even in the New York area, so while it would be a completely different lifestyle (hours are about 9-5! That was like a half day at my old job), I could stay living in the same place and wouldn’t need to completely uproot myself. I’m really excited!

There are a few other opportunities for which I have interviews lined up (corp headquarters of a retail pharmacy, hedge fund), but none of them fit quite as neatly into categories so I won’t go into many details. Suffice to say that things are not quite as dismal as they once seemed. The economy is not going to drag me down!

PS – Half-Ironman training is done. My training came to an anticlimactic end when I donned my swimsuit the morning after writing that post… and then sat in my room the whole day with no motivation to go down to the pool. Swimming is boring, yo!


23 thoughts on “How to find an interesting and fantastic job”

  1. That’s great!!! So many different opportunities! (and I’m sure that if you get the airline job, you’ll probably be getting a few traveling perks!!).

    If you find swimming too boring, you could get a waterproof case and headphones for your mp3 player 🙂 Makes things more interesting! (totally getting one WHEN I get a job!)

  2. Such a good way of looking at it in a glass is half full kind of way. And if it makes you feel better, I think swimming is boring too, but it’s probably because I am TERRIBLE at swimming laps. Good luck on the job search.

  3. Wow, that really does sound great! You make job searching actually sound fun! Its also interesting to see how varied your interests are too…

    Good luck, and I’m sure everything will work out for the best!!

  4. All of the job prospects sound fantastic – maybe this was just the way to get to something new, with reasonable hours!
    The dog walking job sounds like the perfect way to balance seeing dogs, but not being tied to one long term. Such a good thinker!

  5. i want to work with animals soooo bad! my dream job one day is to have a house with property so i can have my own dog day care 🙂 someday…. 🙂

    all those opportunities sound amazing!!!! good luck and cant wait to hear more about how they go!

    i hate swimming… yuck.

  6. I love how postive you’re thinking about all this and it sounds like you’ve got some fantastic opportunites lined up.

    If you can, maybe try swimming with the master’s program at your pool, it’s an extra challenge and they give you a workout so it’s not just mindlessly swimming laps!

  7. Yes, the travel benefits will be nice also for all the future marathons. I worked for an airline for 5 years just out of college. Those are some NICE perks.

    One more thing….I’ve seen you in person, that’s crap about the bathing suit! You’re way to hard on yourself.

    Good luck!


  8. Wow, you’ve made some major progress, good for you! I can’t wait to hear how it all works out.
    Sorry to hear about the ending of the ironman training, I think swimming will be the first thing I’m allowed to do….I hope I don’t hate it!

  9. Hey, you might as well look at other stuff!! I like the idea of dog walking while you are hanging out. If nothing else you’ll get an idea for what kinds of dogs you like.

    I totally understand the swimming. I usually get to the step just before putting on the swim suit. Oh wait, that is pretty much the do nothing step.

  10. really creative way of exploring a stressful job market.


    MizFit who actually has a masters in career counseling (I know. who knew? I never use it :))

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