While I am certainly not a prophet, the facts strongly suggest—with a high degree of probability—that 2013 could be THE YEAR to seriously consider making your next career move.

How can that possibly be? you might be asking yourself. Isn’t there still considerable turmoil, trouble and economic uncertainty not only in our own country but around the world as well? Well, yes, there is, but there are also a LOT of very positive developments today, and many of these developments are expected to accelerate as we enter 2013. Let’s consider just a few of them:

  • While the news media consistently focus largely on the number of new jobs created each month, rarely if ever do they focus on a fact such as this: So far in 2012, over four million jobs have been filled each and every month of the year. (Coincidentally, millions of other jobs go unfilled month after month, primarily because of a chronic disconnect between the qualifications of potential employees and the qualifications required for the open positions.)
  • After being in the doldrums for a number of years, the housing market has apparently “bottomed out” and is finally starting to get back on track. Home prices in a number of key geographic areas of the country are starting to creep back up, resulting in a steady reduction in the numbers of homeowners who have been “under water,” i.e., they owe more on their homes than the fair market value. We are also seeing increases in both the number of building permits and new housing starts. Mortgage rates are at historic lows.
  • We are also seeing an energy boom. Where once we were nearly totally dependent upon foreign oil, it is estimated that, by 2020, the U. S. will produce more oil than Saudi Arabia!
  • Many companies that have been making-do with far fewer employees for the last several years, while fattening up their bottom lines, are really beginning to feel the pressure to add new employees to meet the steadily increasing rate of new business in some key business sectors, e.g., manufacturing, technology, et al. Hiring still remains relatively slow, but unlike just a few years ago, real companies today have real jobs that they need to fill, and provided business continues to grow, the pace can be expected to pick up considerably through 2013.
  • After a number of years of debt deleveraging, i.e., reducing or eliminating the practice of borrowing money to acquire assets, both individual households and businesses are once again, at least tentatively and still cautiously, moving back into the credit markets, thereby providing a much-needed stimulus for the overall economy. And because consumer spending is far and away THE most important driver of the overall economy, this development has HUGE potential!

All of these developments of course have one very important thing in common: They all produce jobs! For example, for every new home built three new jobs are created. As a result of the energy boom, 1.3 million energy related jobs are expected to be created between now and 2020. Because sizeable numbers of households have been cleaning up their own “balance sheets” for the last several years, by reducing (or eliminating) unmanageable debt, many are now in a far better position (and frame of mind) to buy new vehicles, make home repairs or remodel, take vacations, as well as to make many other necessary (or even “discretionary”) purchases. The result of this increased consumer spending? You guessed it, more new jobs!

Time to Look at the ‘Forest,’ Not Just at the ‘Trees’

Have you been keeping up with these recent business and economic developments/trends? Are you even aware of them? Chances are, you may not be. Why? Because, if you are like so many currently employed people, you probably have been so busy these past several years looking at the “trees” that you felt you really didn’t have the time to even consider looking at the “forest”! Well, now would be a good time to start doing that.

Are you dissatisfied with your current job, maybe even considerably dissatisfied with it? Would you really like to change your situation, but aren’t quite sure how to go about accomplishing that goal?* Are you among those currently employed men and women who remain somewhat “shell-shocked” as the result of work experiences during the last several years, e.g., watching friends and colleagues lose their jobs, doing the work of two or more people with little or no additional compensation and/or genuine appreciation from your employer? Are you sick and tired of being told how ‘lucky” you are to still have a job? Are you still “keeping your head down” and not even considering the improved—and improving—career opportunities that are right now before your eyes?

If any part(s) of the preceding paragraph describes you and your current career situation, then 2013 could definitely prove to be the year you can begin to turn things around for yourself and your career! But you must make sure you are adequately prepared, that you have properly branded yourself to be seriously considered for the genuine career opportunities that either now loom or soon will be looming on the job market horizon.

In future blogs throughout the remainder of this year and into the next, I will be discussing tactics and strategies you can utilize to create and maintain the type of professional brand you will need to effectively compete for future career opportunities. In the meantime, I would love to hear from you and learn about your experiences in today’s job market, as well as about your plans for the future job market. You can email me at the email address indicated below or link in with me at http://www.linkedin.com/in/skipfreeman

This blog is a modified excerpt from professional “headhunter” and bestselling job-hunting book author Skip Freeman’s next book in the “Headhunter” Hiring Secrets series of job-hunting books, Career Stalled? Publication is scheduled for early 2013.


Skip Freeman is the author of “Headhunter” Hiring Secrets: The Rules of the Hiring Game Have Changed . . . Forever! and is the President and Chief Executive Officer of The HTW Group (Hire to Win), an Atlanta, GA, Metropolitan Area Executive Search Firm. Specializing in the placement of sales, engineering, manufacturing and R&D professionals, he has developed powerful techniques that help companies hire the best and help the best get hired.

*Recent surveys conducted by CareerBuilder.com and Jobvite.com indicate that from two-thirds to nearly three-fourths of currently employed people today have at least some dissatisfaction with their jobs and say they definitely would be interested in at least exploring new career opportunities.