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identifying your niche, standing out from your competitionI started this article with respect to identifying how one can pursue self-employment in a seemingly crowded niche, but this really is applicable to anyone. If you are looking for work and competing for a position, the tips in this post should help you with your job search. How are you different than those you are competing with? If you can't answer this question, how will you differentiate yourself from your competition?

Recently, I had the priviledge of talking to a guy about self-employment. I LOVE talking about work that fits. In this case, this guy is a military veteran who, after serving our country, joined a  line of work that seems to be what he needed to do, but conflicts with his inner drive.

Mike (fictitious name for protection) is working in law enforcement. However, his passion is fitness. He thinks he'd like to take advantage of his GI Bill benefits and pursue his degree in a discipline related to exercise science. At first glance, one might think that will be a tough field because of the competition. There are fitness trainers galore out there. You can walk into a gym and find half a dozen personal trainers. One guy told me he has watched how it took his brother 15 years to make a decent living as a personal trainer, but is that really necessary?

Published in Career

My wife Laura is skeptical of self-employment at times. When I talk to her about the coaching business, or even my new venture,, she confesses that she's afraid. She says it's because her security gene is enhanced, and for good reason. I was laid off from my last full-time job with benefits in 2004, 7 years ago this month actually. I didn't find a job until 51 weeks later after, and that after we moved clear across the country to North Carolina.

The change actually began in 2002 when I stepped down from my management position. While I enjoyed my work, I had become a workaholic, and I was missing critical time in the lives of my young daughters. I took a new position working for my friend and mentor who had hired me. Unfortunately, things changed soon after.

Published in Career

So my last article, I finished it by stating that regardless of what you read in the news, you are responsible for your own employment. I then suggested that you might need to consider launching your own venture.

Apparently this paragraph set off one of my readers on The commenter took issue with suggesting that an individual with no skills could start their own business without money. They then took to making my points a political statement and a result of a "misguided protestant work ethic."it

Published in Career

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