I recently celebrated a birthday. It wasn’t one of those milestone birthdays that ends in a zero or five, but, nonetheless, it was a reminder that the years are quickly going by and I am powerless to do anything about it! A few months prior to my birthday, when I was doing research for this blog, I stumbled upon a website under construction called eParachute. According to the builders of the site, it would be launched in November, just a few days after my birthday. So I made a mental note to return in early November to see what it was all about.
Well, apparently there have been some delays, and the site is now supposed to launch in December. Sure it is. We all know how web projects go. I am still working on my new business website…and I can’t even blame a developer since I’m doing it myself.
So just what is, or will be, eParachute?
It purports to be an online version of the classic What Color is Your Parachute? by Dick Bolles. What Color is your Parachute? has been a guide to those searching for jobs, looking to redirect their careers or reexamine their life goals for 40 years now. In fact, 2011 marked the 40th anniversary of Bolles’ first edition, and it’s been updated every year since then. Gosh, it was even around when I was in school!
I say it’s about time Bolles and his publishers went electronic. While What Color is Your Parachute? hasn’t changed much over the years, the latest edition is still chock full of good advice and resources for job seekers and changers in 2011.
As Bolles relates, “The basic core has stayed the same since the beginning: Where do you go from here with your life? The answer has always boiled down to answering just three questions, and they have remained the same these forty years: WHAT, WHERE, and HOW. (WHAT are your favorite transferable skills? WHERE would you most like to be able to use those skills? And HOW do you find the name or names of that job, and the places that have such jobs, and the people with the power to hire you?)
The Flower Exercise is still there, a self-inventory intended to help you find out more about yourself and what type of work is most appropriate for you. And then there are the “pink pages,” which speak to having a personal mission, dealing with unemployment depression and deciding whether you need a career coach.
I find the mission section refreshing. Bolles was an ordained Episcopal minister when he first wrote Parachute and isn’t bashful about talking about how faith and mission are intertwined. As he notes, “We want to feel we were put on Earth for some special purpose, to do some unique work that only we can accomplish. We want to know what our Mission is.” I say Amen to that!
So here’s to Dick Bolles, birthdays and the launching of his new eParachute website. I look forward to reviewing it next month.