Moonlighting: The Wisdom of Having a Second Skill

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In turbulent times and in an era where job and career changes are so prevalent, it pays to have multiple personal skills.  It used to be that a person simply stuck to a single professional profile.  Not any longer.

This patter is abundantly clear in the world of professional sports.  Los Angeles Dodgers manager Joe Torre, for example, was a broadcast-booth presence for the California Angels between manager jobs.

How many Metropolitan Opera chorus members worked as (singing) waiters until the breakthrough role finally arrived?  How many Hollywood stars unloaded trucks or drew sodas while they performed, often uncredited, roles in B and even C films?  In an article titles “Actors Moonlighting on Horror Flicks,” DVD columnist Michael H. Kleinschrodt points out that marquee stars like Casey Affleck, George Clooney, Cate Blanchett, and Halle Berry all worked on the scary screen.

When planning your moonlighting, it;s generally best to develop skills that have some relationship with each other, but not necessarily for professions that are likely to suffer in the same flat economic period.

In a U.S. News & World Report column, Karen Burns advises, ” You have a job.  Good news!  But you don’t like the job.  Or it doesn’t pay a living wage.  Or it doesn’t offer health insurance.  That’s bad news.  The secret to successful moonlighting is simple: Job B needs to provide what Job A lacks.”  She admits, “Long-term moonlighting can wear you down.  But until the economy improves and/or you find that One Good Job, two jobs that complement each other may be the answer.”

Don’t forget to check out my book “Use Your Head To Get Your Foot In The Door” for more job search secrets, tips, and advice.

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