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Are you feeling stuck in your current position, seeking a new one, or contemplating a career change? In this interview, author and career coach Valerie Sutton answers common questions about career development. For those thinking about a new career, she offers advice on assessing your passions and your personality, knowing when you need more education to get the job you want, and researching hiring trends in the industries that interest you. For those actively searching for jobs or getting back into the job market after an absence, she discusses how to write resumes and cover letters that speak to your talents, impress potential employers, and help you land an interview.
Jeff Layton: Do you have any advice for someone who's moving from freelancing into a corporate environment? Valerie Sutton: Yes, you really have to look for the cultural fit. You're making a pretty big change here, and there's lot of benefits to go into the corporate environment-- the steady healthcare and retirement and the regular paycheck and all of the technology support that you get around that type of a position--but you also want to make sure that you fit with the people.
And so because you're going to be working with them every day, and you're not going to have necessarily that freedom that you had as a freelancer. So I think it's really important to understand that fit before you apply to a company. Jeff: What about vice versa? Do you have any advice from someone who's accustomed to working in a corporate environment and now they want to freelance? Valerie: You should prepare well. I think you have to think about, a lot of people that want to go to that freelance work, it's they love what they do.
So take for instance, a graphic designer. I love the design aspect of it, but remember you're also now a business person, and so you have to think through, how am I going to market the materials, how am I going to get new clients, how am I going to set up the fees? And so there's a lot of things in there that you have to think about, and so you want to reflect and say, you know, is this something that I really want to do, because you're going to spend probably 50% of your time on the business aspect and less on the design aspect.
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