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-   -   Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box? (https://britishexpats.com/forum/usa-57/any-work-ideas-possibly-out-box-935460/)

moi Oct 27th 2020 4:23 pm

Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
Ok so long story short I am loosing my job at the end of this year. I was wondering if anyone had any ideas as to what I could maybe do with my background. Basically, I have been working as an Executive/Administrative Assistant reporting to Director or C level for the last 20 years. I have worked in the clothing industry (Loehmanns), PWC (Contract work) and Property Management company, along with an internship at a prosecutor's office. I also have my notary certificate and ABA paralegal certificate. I am pretty decent at Microsoft Suite and Publisher and know MRI (property software) somewhat well.
In the northern NJ area, I was making $35 per hour so I'm not sure if I have maxed out that salary too.
I am constantly putting in executive assistant in the search bar, but I was wondering if anyone thinks I should look out of the box. If I started doing paralegal work, I would have to start at entry level and would be considerably less than what I make now. I do not want to work a zillion hours because I have a 15 year old and 5 year old so I am also interested in part time as well.
Any out of the box ideas or ideas in general or just stick with Admin Assistant....besides becoming a stay at home mum. Such a hard time looking for work right now with covid too. It was pretty easy before covid hit and I was getting calls for $90k jobs.
*Please move this if in wrong area.

tom169 Oct 27th 2020 4:26 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
Do you have a LinkedIn? If not create one and ensure that all of the directors / execs you've worked with are on there.

moi Oct 27th 2020 4:59 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 

Originally Posted by tom169 (Post 12926888)
Do you have a LinkedIn? If not create one and ensure that all of the directors / execs you've worked with are on there.

Yes, I have a LinkedIn account. A few of them I would prefer to forget that were a nightmare..
I also thought about going back to college and do a meaningful career like nursing or something,, but at the age of 51 and 2 kids (one only 5 and one 15 year old needing me to commute him home from private school) and a husband working a lot seems like it was one of those things that should have been done a long time ago.



Pulaski Oct 27th 2020 5:23 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
I agree with Tom, at your age the only likely way to make a significant change in career direction will be through someone you know who can get you in, or at least get your résumé to someone who who is taking the hiring decision. My wife who had a very similar back ground to you ended up in a forced change of job during the Great Recession, and landed a good job (which she staill has) in just a few weeks in a role that on paper she had no qualifications for, but for which training was provided. She may have got the role without the tip, but without the tip she likely would never have even noticed the job posting, much less applied for it. The only other twist to the story was that it was a role for which there simply weren't any suitably qualified applicants, and the employer knew it, so was forced into a strategy of "hire and train".

christmasoompa Oct 27th 2020 6:06 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 

Originally Posted by moi (Post 12926887)
Ok so long story short I am loosing my job at the end of this year. I was wondering if anyone had any ideas as to what I could maybe do with my background. Basically, I have been working as an Executive/Administrative Assistant reporting to Director or C level for the last 20 years. I have worked in the clothing industry (Loehmanns), PWC (Contract work) and Property Management company, along with an internship at a prosecutor's office. I also have my notary certificate and ABA paralegal certificate. I am pretty decent at Microsoft Suite and Publisher and know MRI (property software) somewhat well.
In the northern NJ area, I was making $35 per hour so I'm not sure if I have maxed out that salary too.
I am constantly putting in executive assistant in the search bar, but I was wondering if anyone thinks I should look out of the box. If I started doing paralegal work, I would have to start at entry level and would be considerably less than what I make now. I do not want to work a zillion hours because I have a 15 year old and 5 year old so I am also interested in part time as well.
Any out of the box ideas or ideas in general or just stick with Admin Assistant....besides becoming a stay at home mum. Such a hard time looking for work right now with covid too. It was pretty easy before covid hit and I was getting calls for $90k jobs.
*Please move this if in wrong area.

Not sure what they'd call it in the US, but a Household PA or Private PA maybe? In the UK you can earn £100k+, and if you are a Mum used to running a household with Exec Assistant experience, you could do it with your eyes shut - granted, you may not be booking private jets for your own household very often, but a lot of other things stay the same. :lol: Often part-roles are available too, as families only require support a couple of days a week, and it's a job that can be done remotely so fits in well around kids.

Just an idea anyway, I have no idea what it would earn in the US, and don't know what opportunities for it are like there, but it's something I did for over a decade after not wanting to work in the corporate world in London anymore after having my kids. It was the best way to earn good money but fit work around them and my own business.

Best of luck to you.

cxx Oct 27th 2020 7:22 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
Have you considered doing some Virtual Assistant gigs? That would allow you to set your own hours, and it may lead to something permanent with one of the companies you support.

Rete Oct 27th 2020 10:15 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
Why are you looking under Executive Assistant? Try Administrative Assistant; Personal Assistant; Senior Administrative Assistant.

You can also try executive secretary as that is all an administrative assistant is. I know, I was one for many years before retirement.

SpoogleDrummer Nov 2nd 2020 5:32 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 

Originally Posted by moi (Post 12926901)
Yes, I have a LinkedIn account. A few of them I would prefer to forget that were a nightmare..
I also thought about going back to college and do a meaningful career like nursing or something,, but at the age of 51 and 2 kids (one only 5 and one 15 year old needing me to commute him home from private school) and a husband working a lot seems like it was one of those things that should have been done a long time ago.

It's never too late to retrain if you want to, especially if you have no real passion for your current job. I work with a lot of nursing schools and we regularly see students in their 50's and 60's, the fact you know how to use a computer will give you a head start over a lot of them too. My wife's aunt recently qualified as a vet tech after going back to school to get her GED in her 70's. The issue for most people is they can't afford to not be in full time employment so if you can and there's something you want to retrain to do then go for it.

tom169 Nov 2nd 2020 9:56 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 

Originally Posted by moi (Post 12926901)
Yes, I have a LinkedIn account. A few of them I would prefer to forget that were a nightmare..
I also thought about going back to college and do a meaningful career like nursing or something,, but at the age of 51 and 2 kids (one only 5 and one 15 year old needing me to commute him home from private school) and a husband working a lot seems like it was one of those things that should have been done a long time ago.

Firstly I hope you aren't insinuating that your career isn't meaningful. I think you'll agree that time management is imperative to an executive and you are the person that makes that happen. For nursing you're looking at probably 4 years of college (plus any pre-reqs if you need to get a GED etc) and then ongoing training. It's going to be TOUGH for a 51 year old to get through all of that. I really hope you find something quick, unemployment can very quickly be tiring on mental health.

moi Nov 3rd 2020 4:47 am

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
Yes, I do feel that an Executive Assistant/Administrative Assistant is not that meaningful mainly because I feel like I am just pushing paperwork or digital copies or emails off my desk as soon as they come on my desk to someone else's desk. I am extremely organized and efficient so I do it pretty well. Maybe I am just sick of doing it after so many years. I do have my BA already, but in Justice Studies with a concentration in Paralegal Studies and graduated with the highest GPA in my graduating class. I also have approx 9 credits towards a MA in legal governance. I just do not have any real work experience in the legal field, except for an internship to be able to graduate in the Megan's Law Unit of the Prosecutor's office, and law just does not really appeal to me anymore anyway as I graduated back in 2008. I would imagine Nursing is full of Science and Math classes which my current BA does not have much of so it would not transfer much.
I was out of work back in the Great Recession back in 2010 for about 1 year (I wasn't looking for work after I got laid off until about 1 year later) and traveled with my son to UK, Greece, and Turkey and got to spend a lot of quality time with him and my mum that I was not able to do while working like a dog the rest of the time. The difference this time is that you cannot even properly travel to the UK etc due to Covid as it would be nice to do a similar thing.
I think another negative thing about nursing is that a lot of graduates end up having to work nights/weekends. I think that would be hard with a 5 and 15-year-old too. I guess I will just suck it up...maybe take some time off (I'm on my husband's health benefits ...collect unemployment...spend some time with my kids....and then get sick of my kids and find another admin job even if I have to take a little payout to what I was making). Then dream of retirement in about 14 years!

Nutmegger Nov 3rd 2020 3:03 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
BE member Petitefrancaise seems to have carved an interesting niche for herself working to assist incoming ex-pats. Perhaps you might want to talk to her to see if an NJ version of what she does in TX might be something you would like to try.

moi Dec 13th 2020 10:22 pm

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
Just to give you an update to the people who kindly offered advice. I was offered two job offers within a week or two. The first one I asked if I could try it out for a day by coming into the office to make sure it is a good fit on both sides. I decided to turn that job offer down. 75K with 2 weeks PTO. It was not professional and seemed like bullying behavior going on with a full camera on you in your office, along with other issues I could foresee, such as they had already gone through 2/3 people prior to me. I did not have a comfortable feeling about it at all and went with my gut.
The next job offer I accepted. EA to President/COO/CFO of a commercial/retail real estate investment company in NY state (45 min commute from NJ). 78K with 4 weeks PTO and 401K and profit-sharing. I have a couple of dilemmas, but hopefully, they will sort themselves out. I currently work 28 hours (which worked great with the kids) and this will be a 40 hour week. I'm not shy of work, but coordinating my 5-year-old and 15-year-old can be tough, although I currently have my husband helping out as he works remotely 3/4 days per week. My other dilemma is I could have collected unemployment benefits for at least 57 weeks because I am getting laid off due to no fault of my own from my current job. I am worried if this job does not work out and they let me go say after 90 or 180 days for some unknown reason that I am then not eligible to collect unemployment, when I know I definitely could have because I think you have to be in a job for a certain length of time. I liked the people I met etc, but it seems like they let a couple of people work remotely 3 days per week, but then I am supposed to be there in person for 5 days. I guess they look at the role and circumstances but didn't seem fair.
I was kind of looking forward to getting a good decent 4-week visit to the UK during my unemployment coverage time so I guess that will not be happening now.
I hope I have made the right decision.

Glasgow Girl Dec 14th 2020 1:59 am

Re: Any work ideas - Possibly out of the box?
 
Congratulations on your new position. I think you made the right decision. Frequently it is easier to find a new position when you already have one, so if you think it is not a good long term fit you will have time and less pressure to look around.

With regard to unemployment insurance I am sure its varies with each state, but I believe in many states if you have not exhausted the unemployment available to you from a previous job and you are let go from a new job before building up the normally required time then you can claim based upon your previous record and will receive whatever weeks are remaining. So in other words it is as if you never took the new job and you just restart your unemployment from where you left off.

On the remote aspect, maybe try again after you have each gotten comfortable with each other. I can understand them wanting to assess your performance before they allow that.


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