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Surprising Cool Careers

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Bottom Line/Personal: When people think of second careers, it’s easy to think about consulting or think about tutoring or whatever. But what are some of the hottest little-known second careers that really are cool?

Nancy Collamer: This was one of the really fun things about writing a book on this topic; I got to speak with people who were doing all sorts of unique things. A couple that jump out at me – the first is, I interviewed someone who is a celebrant.

Bottom Line: A celebrant.

Collamer: A celebrant.

Bottom Line: And that is?

Collamer: Familiar with the term “interfaith minister?”

Bottom Line: Mm-hm, sure.

Collamer: A celebrant is someone who is similar to an interfaith minister, and most of what they do are wedding ceremonies, but they also can do funerals or adoption ceremonies. The woman I had interviewed told me about how she conducted a special ceremony for someone when they were at the end of their breast cancer treatment. So it’s any time that you want to have an occasion to celebrate a milestone moment in life.

And the reason celebrants have really caught on is we are living at a time when you have a lot of not just interfaith marriages, but a lot of intercultural marriages and intercultural households. And people want to have meaning in their lives, and while they may not belong to a church or a synagogue or a mosque, they want to have something that’s really going to be meaningful and personal in terms of a ceremony. So you can train to become a celebrant.

Bottom Line: Wow, interesting. What does training involve?

Collamer: The course that she took was actually a 9-month course, believe it or not, through – I’m not sure that I remember the name exactly, but I think it was the International Celebrant Academy. But if you look it up online, there is training available.

Bottom Line: Fascinating. How fun would that be?

Collamer: Yeah.

Bottom Line: So what else do you got?

Collamer: Okay, another one is one I actually initially learned about when my family and I went and stayed at a bed and breakfast one time, and we expected to meet the innkeeper, but we didn’t. Instead, we met a couple who were the temporary innkeepers, and it turns out that there is a profession called innsitters.

What an innsitter is, it’s sort of like a babysitter for an inn or a bed and breakfast. And again, you can take a training course on becoming an innsitter, and those tend to be much shorter courses – week, couple of weeks. What innsitters do is rather than owning your own bed and breakfast, which is a typical fantasy type thing –

Bottom Line: It’s much harder than they have any idea. Sounds glamorous; it’s hard.

Collamer: Yeah. Not only is it hard work, it also can cost a lot of money. So if you don’t want all of that headache, what you can do is train to be an innsitter. You then go and stay at an inn for a weekend or a week so that the innkeeper can get away, and they can go on vacation. You get to live the life for a week, and then you can go back home and enjoy life as normal. It’s a nice way to travel around the country.

Bottom Line: Wow, interesting. And great – I mean, don’t consider it if you’re not handy and you don’t want to cook and clean, right? You’ve got to still have those basic skills.

Collamer: You have to want to do that, absolutely.

Bottom Line: Because it is a get-your-hands-dirty job.

Collamer: Yeah.

Bottom Line: Okay, great. Got anything else?

Collamer: Yeah, the third one is much more along professional lines, executive job. That is something called an interim executive.

Bottom Line: I-n-t-e-r-i-m? Interim.

Collamer: Yes. Typically, when people think of being a temp, they think in terms of lower level administrative type jobs – answering phones, doing some administrative work. However, in recent years, there has actually been an increase in the number of firms that hire people to be interim executives.

For example, if a CFO, let’s say goes out on maternity leave, if you’ve been a CFO, you could then go into the company, function as the CFO for 3 months. It can be a really nice arrangement as a second act career because it’s a way of keeping your professional skills up. The pay is in line with professional pay. You work very hard when you go in and do the job, but then you have periods of time in between assignments when you can go off and travel and just enjoy life. So it can be a great arrangement.

Bottom Line: Interesting. Do they find those positions through agencies?

Collamer: They do. Generally speaking, yes. We see them with the CFOs, sometimes marketing professionals, and sometimes even CEOs, especially in turnaround situations. Lots of possibilities that you might not have thought about before.

Bottom Line: Great. Thanks very much, Nancy Collamer.

Collamer: You’re welcome.

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Source: Nancy Collamer, a career counselor, speaker, and author of Second-Act Careers: 50+ Ways to Profit from Your Passions During Semi-Retirement. She also writes a semi-monthly career column for NextAvenue.com (PBS) and Forbes.com. MyLifestyleCareer.com Date: January 30, 2015 Publication: Bottom Line Personal
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