Start Your 2011 Career Comeback

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Learn how you hold the key to launching your own career comeback.

By Chris Kyle

Did 2010 hit you hard professionally? Take heart...you may actually be in good company.

Author J.K. Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter novel as a struggling single mom. Even the great Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team as a sophomore.

What's the lesson here? Everyone can make a comeback.

[Start training for your career comeback. Find the right school now.]

If your current employment situation isn't ideal, the timing may be right to turn things around.

"I've listed more jobs in the last 30 days than I have in the last two years," says Coy Renick, a corporate recruiter in Roanoke, Virginia. "Companies have confidence that it's time to start doing some hiring now that there is a better balance of power in Washington, D.C."

Check out these three career fields that can position you for your career comeback.

Comeback Career #1 - Business

Bob Kelleher, an HR expert for Monster.com, expects businesses to staff up again in 2011. "I am very optimistic that companies will start hiring so they can increase revenue and supplies," says Kelleher.

Comeback Keys: Looking at the bigger picture, Colorado State University's Martin Shields is optimistic because the gross domestic product - the value of all goods and services produced nationwide - has improved for four straight quarters.

If you've been applying for jobs in the business world without much success in 2010, don't despair.

"Stay positive and talk enthusiastically about the skills you do have," says Renick, adding that a temporary or contract position is a great way to get your foot in the door.

Training: With companies looking to hire again, make sure your resume is up to date. Taking classes and earning a business certificate or degree is a great way to stay current. Getting an MBA will help for senior-level positions. Freelance consulting gigs are another great way to fill gaps on your resume.

[Search for Business schools near you or online]

Average Salaries:
Office Managers: $45,790
Financial Analysts: $73,150
Marketing Managers: $97,260
Financial Managers: $99,330

[Click here to find Business schools now]

Comeback Career #2 - Health Care

With regards to job growth, the health care industry is the biggest and fastest growing sector of the economy, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Comeback Keys: The American Society for Clinical Pathology says there is a "serious shortage" of laboratory personnel in the United States, making qualified job applicants well-positioned for success in 2011. What's more, jobs like medical assistant, nurse, and phlebotomist are impossible to outsource.

Upward mobility is another plus for the health care profession.

"A good number of my phlebotomists have worked full time for us and have taken advantage of tuition reimbursement," Newton Memorial Hospital's Ruth Pollison told the Philadelphia Inquirer. "They've gone on to become nurses, lab technologists or radiologic technologists."

Training: Quick training programs, whether it's a certificate or associate's degree, can qualify you for many medical positions. If you start now, you might be ready to start work in 2011! [Search for Nursing and Medical training programs now]

Average Salary:
Medical Assistants: $28,300
Dental Assistants: $32,380
Laboratory Technicians: $53,500
Registered Nurses: $62,450
Medical Managers: $80,240

[Click here to find Health Care career programs now]

Comeback Career #3 - Legal

According to staffing firm Robert Half International, the legal industry is expected to see the strongest hiring activity in the fourth quarter of 2010, setting up a rosy outlook for occupations like court reporters and paralegals well into 2011.

Comeback Keys: Paralegals, long an indispensable part of a legal team, will see "much faster than average" job growth through 2018, according to the Department of Labor. Since paralegals perform many of the same tasks as lawyers, yet don't earn as lofty salaries, job security is another real strength.

Training: Becoming a paralegal or court reporter can be a quick career transition for many professionals, particularly if you already have a bachelor's. Certificate programs can last just six months. [Find Paralegal schools near you]

Average Salary:
Paralegals: $46,120
Court Reporters: $49,710

[Click here to find Legal training programs now]

*All salary data is from the U.S. Department of Labor and represents the annual average salary in 2008.

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