Growth Industries and Transferable Skills

An article in the New York Times by Louis Uchitelle on Sunday, July 19th discussed the recession and where the jobs are in this new economy.

Job losses are steepest in motor vehicles and parts, as well as temporary help services, employment services, furniture and related products, and construction and manufacturing.

So where are the jobs?  Growing sectors include home health-care services (and areas related to an aging population), other health-care-related industries, oil and gas extraction, and the federal government (except the U.S. Postal Service).
Are your skills transferable?  Solid backgrounds in accounting, sales, marketing, and project management, for example, are highly transferable skills, regardless of industry.

The ability to gather and analyze information, make decisions, lead, manage, organize, delegate, listen, negotiate, and show up on time are all examples of transferable skills.

As you march through your career, consider your job to be specific to a point in time and your skills to be transferable, regardless of where you work.

Expand your horizons by developing and cultivating skills that can carry you through your career.



With the economy rapidly plunging, there is a plethora of “overqualified” candidates available.

Overqualified can be defined as candidates who may have more experience and education than the position requires. These candidates are now willing to work in positions below their skill set at a lower market value. For example, we’re seeing chief financial officers now applying to work as accountants or financial analysts.

Some hiring managers say they are reluctant to hire overqualified candidates because the candidate:

  • Will be underpaid and soon ask for a salary increase or promotion
  • Will be underpaid resulting in personal financial issues
  • Could feel resentful and become a problem employee
  • May have more experience than the hiring manager, thus causing the hiring manager to feel his/her leadership or position may be threatened
  • May leave when the market turns around

None of these are solid valid reasons as much as negative thoughts focusing on why not to hire a qualified candidate. Once someone is in a job about six months, he/she usually masters the position. Now that the dot-com boom days are over, there is no evidence that overqualified candidates, once hired, leave for better positions.

Positive Aspects: Why You SHOULD hire overqualified candidates:

In today’s economy, there aren’t jobs available for candidates to move to. Many once healthy industries are now defunct. Candidates who make the transition to new firms say they are sincerely interested in stability and long-term success.

And candidates know that their compensation in prior positions has no bearing on what pay they may receive for a similar position in another firm. If a job is being outsourced, a candidate is more interested in maintaining a working career and a paycheck than quibbling over a salary differential, even if the difference is $20,000 or more. People are grateful for work.

We’re hearing that some companies have cut too many employees. This is an excellent time to hire and round out a team. This is a rare time when so many excellent people with strong skills and advanced degrees are immediately available.

Overqualified candidates are our neighbors. We want to keep people in our community employed. We can’t wait for the government and stimulus packages.

It’s up to you and your company to create jobs and hire today.

There are currently countless outstanding candidates for every open job. More people are in the process of losing their homes. They are eager for meaningful work and a paycheck. If you have a job opening, someone unemployed and available is waiting and ready to go to work for you today.

Let’s keep our economy strong. Let’s Keep America Working!


Dianne Gubin now offers one-on-one coaching career services. Whether you’re re-entering the workforce or need to brainstorm how to ask for your next raise, we can help.

To book a session call: 818-222-0300 x 101

Who Makes the Cut?

You leave the job interview confident that you gave it your best.  You answered all the questions and knew everything possible about the company.

Days pass and you learn that you didn’t get the job.  What happened?

Here are some of the “closed door reasons” hiring managers and team interviewers have regarding candidates and why things don’t work out:

  • Overqualified and won’t stay
  • Too much of a learning curve
  • Not strong enough in _____  and we don’t have time to train
  • Working with him/her would drive me crazy
  • I didn’t like the way he/she answered a question
  • We have stronger/more qualified people who work here already
  • Talked too much
  • Talked to me, but didn’t talk to everyone in the room
  • Not enough eye contact
  • Ugly outfit
  • Won’t pass a background check because…
  • Said too much about why last job didn’t work out.
  • I know “So and So” who worked with candidate at his last company.  We don’t want him here.
  • He/She will be too distracted with family/child care/eldercare issues
  • I don’t think he/she will get along with…
  • He/She just won’t work out here.  It doesn’t feel right.

Candidates don’t usually hear the true reason a position doesn’t go forward.

Larger companies and educational institutions generally include all stake holders in a hiring process.  This can mean that 10 or more people participate in the hiring process, each taking a minimum of an hour per interview from normal work, and ranking the candidates.  All candidates are asked the same questions and graded on answers. This process is subjective at best and designed to weed out as many as possible.

If you’re not offered the position, chalk it up as a learning experience and continue the search process.

The right job is out there for you.