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03/12/2007: "gearing up for another jobsearch push"

I honestly don't recall if I've mentioned it, but I'm commuting 45 minutes West to work nowadays (one way). I know I've mentioned that the tires I have on the car are ultra-cheap, and aren't worth a damn in the snow. Consequently, I've had some VERY interesting (read: puckerlicious) drives to and from work this winter. Just last week I got to work, and at 10am ALL roads were closed. Come closing time I had the choice of convoying with someone else to try and make it home or stay in a motel. I made it home, but boy was it fun.

Between that experience and the realization (thanks to an GHG emissions calculator) that most of my personal emissions (insert fart joke here) - on the order of 90% - come from transportation, and you've got one makings of a new push to find local employment. My goal: something local and permanent. If I can actually get rid of my vehicle and be able to bike to work, all the better. And I'm off!

I started by scouring the city's business directory for likely candidates. It's hardly an exact way to do things, but it's given me a few points to start with. I've also checked Workopolis for the first time in months, and put out a few resumes based on that. I've even reconnected with the recruiter that had me all riled up about moving to Nanaimo, as the company's website out there still shows an open position (and the cohousing group there still has 3+ bedroom units available). All in all, momentum is building.

Then I get blindsided - in a happy way, mostly.

Today at work (the contract I've been on for nearly 4 months now) I was talking with my supervisor, and he casually mentions that there is a new position opening up that needs filling. It would be a full-time position, and more managerial than what I'm doing now (part managing the project, part continuous improvement, part engineering). Would I be interested?

Initially, I thought to myself, "Uh... no?" If this winter has taught me anything, it's that driving this much to and from work SUCKS in bad weather, which this region seems to be blessed with in the winter. However, having a proper set of snow tires would eliminate about 80% of that worry, I'm convinced. But I want to reduce the amount of GHG emissions I'm responsible for too. Well, there are cars that produce a lot less than what I drive now. This could be my excuse to get a smart fortwo, or even purchase and refurbish an electric vehicle (if I can find a homebuild that has sufficient range).

Needless to say, 2 minutes after I talk with him I'm entirely jazzed with the idea. Full time employment! Benefits! Holiday time! RRSP contributions! STABILITY!!!! It's oh so sweet.

"But what of being a sustainable building consultant?" you ask? I've thought of that. Even when I get my LEED-accreditation, that alone is not going to allow me to break into the industry. I need experience, and I'm not going to get it quickly. However, I WILL be getting it with our cohousing group. Just this past weekend we had our inaugural meeting, and it went really well. We've got a good group, and I'm utterly convinced it's going to get off the ground. If I am the LEED consultant for this project, and am involved with it as I think I'm going to be, that alone will be a huge amount of experience that will be able to propel me into a new career. Yes, it will be 3-5 years down the line, but I believe I'm at a point where I can live with that. Get some stability, iron out the fiduciary kinks that have been forming over the past few years, and launch into a new career from a new home in a new cohousing development. It would be pretty sweet.

Of course, nothing is guaranteed yet. No idea on what kind of salary they'd be offering, or whether it would be worth my while to commute 90 minutes a day for said salary. Getting rid of a vehicle is worth at least $5000 to me, which I'm willing to take off my salary if I can work locally. Still, it would be good experience to manage a multi-million dollar ongoing project for this company's best customer, and it's hard to argue with a job that leaps into your lap like that. I can't imagine I'd turn it down, unless I get seriously lowballed. So I guess I'll just have to wait and see what comes of it all.

Meanwhile, the hunt will continue. I'm on the lookout for jobs that I can do with the experience I have, and will worry about wholesale career change later. I've got to steady the boat before I can change course, methinks. Time to stop bailing and restart the engine.

OK, enough metaphores. Time for bed.

Replies: 1 Comment

on Tuesday, March 13th, Bob said

Interesting development. How does being a fulltime manager grab you?

Meanwhile, have you heard of ? I haven't done all the research on it yet, but assuming it's on the up-and-up, it would be one way for you to (somewhat) allay your GHG concerns about driving that distance.

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