I know that it takes fortitude to ask for support.
I don’t know about you, but the new millennium is strange: everything I grew up to expect in life is upside down; jobs are not guaranteed, home ownership is no longer an investment, the middle class is shrinking, and homelessness is no longer the domain of a few downtrodden souls. Here in Florida, the number of unemployed continues to rise monthly (Florida leads the nation in both unemployment statistics and real estate devaluation) and I am thankful to have a roof over my head.
While there are buskers who pretend along with others who may not deserve a handout, the benefit of the doubt has graced people I’ve seen with signs or an open hand. Maybe it’s my upbringing, but I find it difficult to pass by without giving them something. I often think “There but for the grace of God, go I,” were it not for good luck and education.
Have you seen how creative some of the signs have become? It seems that today even the homeless compete for dollars (did you see the story about the New York person whose sign “Need money to buy weed” brings in close to $500 per shift?) This was not the society I was raised to inherit – yet I find that there is little security today. Here at the crossroads of mid-life, neither friends nor I wasted away savings or quit jobs; we are challenged because of downsizing and business cuts. Do you see the same things occurring where you live?
As a young engineer who graduated in the 1980’s,
I was fortunate to have job choices and options – there were more jobs than applicants! For years, I could move freely between jobs progressively up the ladder. It was also easy to start my business in 1994 and to make a profitable living. I had no idea how lucky I was then or over the next six years when I was able to support a freelance team of 5 people. I kept my team gainfully employed with generous salaries for several years and life was good. During this time, I could have advised other young women on how to build a profitable business easily and quickly — even though my secret was that I was in a niche and high demand market.
Since then, life has changed – business changed and contracts slowed, and today my clients want short-term (less than a week at a time) project management and software metrics training. I deliver high energy knowledge transfer in my speaking and consulting engagements, but the work “pipeline” remains low. It is frustrating to have good health, an excellent reputation and skills, yet have open blocks in my calendar. When I look at who I was with a highly successful business and who I am today, I am the same person of high integrity, but with more experience, credentials, and compassion.
Finding contracts online or via job boards is no longer a reality as anyone with a computer and a mouse can click their way to applying for technical jobs. The key to finding work today is through connections – successful job seeking is based on who you know not what you know.
So, it is with humility that I say “will work for…”
I definitely need more speaking engagements and contract work! Will you help me by referring me to your superiors, colleagues, and friends when you hear that they need a speaker or an instructor for their upcoming event? I speak on topics ranging from project management to making technology a success to software measurement. In addition, I can be a spokesperson for your company at conferences to bring traffic back to the trade show floor. My fees are reasonable and I am willing to travel internationally.
Recently my keynote speeches included the International Project Management Association Global Congress (Nov 2010 in Istanbul Turkey) and the International Function Point Users Group annual conference (Sept 2010 in Sao Paulo Brazil). I deliver workshops on software measurement and quality topics throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. Over the past 10 years, I have spoken in 25 countries including Asia, Australia, and South Africa.
Thank you in advance for your leads and kind help. My passion is speaking and consulting — I work best with companies who want to improve their business with technology. Please me email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or visit my other blog at http://musingsaboutsoftwaredevelopment.wordpress.com for more information.
Thank you, I am grateful for readers like you.