Business cards go creative, and cheap

Recently I went to a conference without any business cards. When people asked me about it, I said I was “going green” and saving paper, but in truth, I just forgot. I know. That’s a weird move for a career columnist. But in my case, business cards don’t serve much use anymore. I have a website and email address so easy to remember that if anyone wants to find me, all they need to do is remember to spell Marci with an “i” not a “y.” And you can find me on pretty much any social network.

That said, I’m in the minority on this one. As I quickly learned when I wondered aloud on Twitter whether people still care about business cards now that so much of our contact information is posted online. Moments after my tweet, I was barraged with messages from people who are still clinging closely to their business cards. Job hunters need them. Those seeking clients need them. And if you’re dealing with people from other cultures, proper business cards are expected. {Read the rest at Yahoo!}

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The Best Side Businesses

Earlier this week I wrote about how to find the perfect part-time work to fit your life and I recommended considering something entrepreneurial rather than a job since it would provide more flexibility.  And as if the blogosphere were listening, soon after that, I discovered this excellent post, 50 Side Businesses You Can Start on Your Own, by Trent Lamm, the author of 365 Ways to Live on the Cheap, which sounds like a good title for these times. (Actually, Lifehacker discovered it first.)

Clearly, Trent is a man who likes lists. {Read the rest at Yahoo!}

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Finding the perfect part-time work

Part-time work is on the rise, and it’s no surprise. People are taking on extra jobs to make up for hours or income lost, an out-of-work partner, or even a business facing hard times. But part-time jobs can me more than a stop-gap money generator. They can also be a training ground for career reinvention or an audition for a full-time position with both parties getting a chance to try before buying.

I was on “The Today Show” on Sunday speaking about how to find the best part-time jobs and what to think about before taking one. Television goes quickly so while we covered a lot, there was much more I wanted to say — which I’ll do here.

Before you start searching for a part-time job, there are a few things to consider, especially if you already have a job and you’ll be layering part-time work on top of that.

1. If you have a full-time job, try to find something that is compatible with your full-time job.  So, if you have a job that requires you to be functioning early in the morning hours, bartending into the wee hours would probably not be a wise choice. Also try to find work that doesn’t create conflicts of interests with your main job — so if you’re a patent reviewer for the federal government, I wouldn’t recommend consulting for inventors coming before the U.S. Patent Office. {Read the rest on Yahoo!}

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How to Diversify Your Career

I just returned from a conference that was both stimulating and scary. At a gathering where premier journalists typically congregate to talk about craft and their commitment to accurately and artfully write and report true stories, most of the talk at the bar was about the carnage in the media industry. While I was there to speak about career advice, I wasn’t immune to the concern. Last year I lost a regular gig blogging for the New York Times with very little notice. 

But unlike most journalists who are panicking about what they’d do next if they lost a steady paycheck, I quickly replaced that work with high quality work that I enjoy–coaching other writers, teaching, and public speaking. As an experienced freelancer, I also knew how to find writing opportunities even in a shrinking market. {Read the rest at Yahoo!}

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Slash Reference That Made Me Smile

This week’s New York magazine profiles Heron Preston who’s described as a “25-year-old marketing strategist intent on cataloguing scenesters around the world.” The photo of his earringed, tattoed and funky-necklaced naked upper body grabs the centerfold of the magazine (where you usually find one of those “as-told-to” pieces on a person with a cool sense of style, which Mr. Preston also manages to have.)
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From Journalist to Journalist/Author: A Common Slash, With Some Common Challenges

In 2007 soon after my book came out, I wrote a guest post for the New York Women In Communications blog about making the transition from journalist to journalist/author. And every time I stumble onto the musings of a journalist making that transition, I think about how challenging that transition was for me. So I’m reprinting that post here, for anyone going through that process now (and so that I can have it properly archived in my blog since I never put it here!)
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Where Are They Now: Oscar Smith

Oscar Smith, at ODiesel Studio, his gym in New York's Tribeca

I hadn’t planned to post another “Where Are They Now” interview so soon, but then I learned that Oscar Smith played a role in the recent rescue efforts for the US Airways flight that landed in the Hudson River on January 15. I had to talk to him.

Oscar divides his time between working at his Tribeca gym, O-Diesel, and his job on the “scuba rescue” team of The New York City Police Department. I first wrote about Oscar for my book; later, I profiled him for this blog since he was making some changes to his career. 

These days Oscar is shifting again. He is downsizing his gym business because he has been feeling the strain of managing two full-time careers. I spent some time with Oscar this weekend, hearing about his experience working on the rescue and recovery mission.
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Thoughts on Slashing, From Aristotle

There is nothing new about having multiple vocations. Ben Franklin – entrepreneur, author, publisher, inventor, politician, civic activist, founder of a university (mine!) – was the consummate slash, as was Leonardo da Vinci.

Thanks to an email from Tristan Hummel, whom I interviewed for a recent NYT article on artist/entrepreneurs, I now know that Aristotle was an advocate of the slash life as well. And now I give you Aristotle:
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Slashing By Necessity

This morning, the public radio show, The Takeaway, invited me to come on to talk about underemployment. {Listen here.} Specifically, they wanted some advice for the growing number of people who are working part-time but would prefer to be working full time, and for people who are working in jobs for which they are overqualified.

As background, the producers sent me this interesting article from Slate.com by Daniel Gross. According to the article, though the unemployment rate might not be as low as it was, say, in 2003, those numbers might not tell the whole story since neither the unemployment rate nor the payroll jobs figures captures “people who work part-time because they can’t find — or their employer can’t provide — full-time work” or “people who have left the work force entirely.”
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Artist/Mother, An Uneasy Marriage

A new documentary film explores the tension between being a mother and building a career as an artist.

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