Front Page News (Again!)

Seems like a day doesn’t go by where I wake up an fail to see a story on the front page of some news outlet hawking the good news about jobs in the medical billing and coding field.  Today, of course, was no exception.  Upon logging on this morning, I saw the story linked here entitled, “Six Careers That Are Built to Last” penned by Christine Trang.  I will give our regular readers here at the Allen School Online Blog one guess as to which career field was sitting atop this list?  If you guessed “medical and health services manager” give yourself a cookie, or whatever your favorite reward is for being so smart.  Yes indeedy, it comes as no surprise that people studying medical billing and coding or medical office assistance are positioned well to enter a field that just continues to grow and that is exceptionally stable in an economic environment that is anything but.  So keep up the studies y’all.  You’re on the right track and it is validated each day in the media.

Noticeably Absent

Noticeably absent from this depressing article about the disappearance of middle class jobs was any mention of declining numbers of available careers in medical fields.  The middle class squeeze, as we all know, has hit hard at industries like manufacturing where thousands of jobs in factories and assembly lines have been sent overseas to “low cost labor markets”  like China and India or automated with robotics and other technologies.  But this article showed the top five hardest hit career fields outside of manufacturing.  They were:Travel AgentsFive-year decline: 14%Vocational Education Middle School TeachersFive-year decline: 14.4%Broadcast News AnalystsFive-year decline: 15.9%Agricultural EngineersFive-year decline: 18.4%Transit and Rail PoliceFive-year decline: 18.7%Notice what was (thankfully) not included in this sad list?  If you said, “medical industry jobs”, give yourself a prize!

They Said It Couldn’t Be Done

If you’re just beginning your course of study with the Allen School Online, you may be wondering if you can make it.  Perhaps you were forced out of another career path by the economy.  Maybe there are people in your life who tell you its a mistake and that you cannot succeed in this new direction.  Let me urge you to tell the naysayers and nattering nabobs of negativity to stifle their criticisms.  You can do this!  Anything that one sets one’s mind to accomplish can be done if the determination and dedication is there.  Consider the image at the top of this post.  If you had asked people “Is it possible to build a river ON TOP of another river” you would likely have a hard time finding someone who would say it were possible.  Yet, engineers and physicists in Germany did this seemingly impossible feat.  This demonstrates the potential for success if the will is strong to pursue it.  Share these images with anyone in your life who wants to dissuade you from your goal.  Click “more” to see the rest of these phenomenal photos. Continue reading…

How to Get Paid What You’re Worth

WIRED magazine’s DIY section brings us another excellent piece.  Today’s topic is how to get paid what you’re worth when seeking a job.  Follow these easy steps to increase your chances of not only landing a job, but one in which you’ll be compensated commensurate with your abilities and experiences.1 Use an online salary calculator 2 Schmooze, schmooze, schmooze 3 Commit to negotiating 4 But don’t be a jerk 5 Negotiating Strategy 6 Discount future earnings 7 Above all, be flexible 8 Keep your eyes open 9 FinallyClick here to read the details of this strategy and get paid what you’re worth!

How Job Loss Can Lead to Untold Riches

Clearly, it won’t happen this way to everyone.  But there is a lesson to take from the story of Bob Croak, the man responsible for making “Silly Bands” a household name.  You see, Croak was a bar owner/operator who ran afoul of the law.  As a stipulation of the judgment against him, he was ordered to refrain from being in the alcohol sales business.  In effect, he was pushed out of his career.  Did this sink him?  Did he end up destitute and living beneath an overpass?  No.  Quite the contrary, he struck off in a new direction and ultimately discovered what would become 2010’s hottest kiddie craze, the ubiquitous “Silly Bands”.  If you haven’t seen the colorful silicone bands in different shapes that adorn the wrists of nearly every American kid from ages 4-14, you should get your eyes checked.  Croak is sitting atop a toy empire and is making far more money than he ever could as a bar owner.  The moral of this story — especially for those who decided to enter the field of medical billing and coding after losing their jobs in other fields — is that the loss of a job is not always a negative occurrence.  Sometimes, unscheduled changes on the career path are just what a person needs to give them the time and space to explore entirely new horizons.  Sometimes, those horizons are at the edge of successes beyond their wildest dreams.

Do What You Love and Success Will Follow

Okay.  I know we usually keep the content on this blog toward the highbrow end of the spectrum.  But I felt like being a little silly today.  View this awesome video of a two year old Brazilian boy who Sambas better than I ever will.  Beyond the cuteness factor and the giddiness of propagating a viral video sensation, it occured to me that this kid’ll probably grow up to be a professional dancer.  And if he doesn’t, it’ll be a shame because he could make a fortune doing something he so obviously enjoys.  So let that be the lesson from today’s blog post.  Continue to study hard and develop your skills in this area you’ve chosen.  If you truly love the work, you will most definitely succeed.

To Land the Interview/Job: Think Inside the Box?

Standing out from the competition is always a challenge in a job search.  And, although it is said that “there is nothing new under the sun,” there are those individuals who come up with novel ideas for breaking through in terms of getting noticed by a hiring manager.  Follow me over the jump for some truly innovative strategies for getting noticed in the sea of resumes. Continue reading…

Speaking 1,000 Words Without Opening One’s Mouth…the remarkable aspect of nonverbal communication.

In Argentina, the “thumbs up” and “okay” gestures we use regularly in America are considered to be really vulgar. In Cambodia, it is bad manners to meet the eyes of someone who is older than you. In Turkey, people routinely stare – at foreigners and at each other! In China, winking is considered to be highly offensive. In India, it is expected that one will allow an arm’s length of distance from another in conversation, to provide personal space. Similarly, in Britain. In Mexico, however, people who converse stand very close to one another as do people in Russia and backing away appears rude. In Thailand, a nod doesn’t  mean “yes,” but is merely a sign of respect. In Japan, one must point with the entire hand, as pointing with the index finger is rude.One of the most sought after transferable skills (a skill that can be taken from one job to another) for those who work in the medical industry, is the ability to perceive nonverbal messages. It is through nonverbal messages that people communicate their real feelings and their intentions become evident.  Continue reading…

10 Resume Red Flags

Resume Tee & Red FlagsWith unemployment high and so many candidates competing for so few positions, the strength of your resume is even more important than ever.  I found this great breakdown of “don’ts” at Investopedia.com a great site for info on basic economic concepts and financial information.  While we have done resume posts in the past, this list really gets into some of the mistakes folks have been making lately in their attempts to make their resume stand out against the sea of resumes that recruiters are swimming in.

Surge in New US Medical Schools is a Positive Indicator

The New York Times reported over the weekend on an imminent surge in new medical schools to open in the US this year.  From that article:
“The proliferation of new schools is also a market response to a rare convergence of forces: a growing population; the aging of the health-conscious baby-boom generation; the impending retirement of, by some counts, as many as a third of current doctors; and the expectation that, the present political climate notwithstanding, changes in health care policy will eventually bring a tide of newly insured patients into the American health care system.If all the schools being proposed actually opened, they would amount to an 18 percent increase in the 131 medical schools across the country.”
For some perspective on the significance of this development, follow me past the jump. Continue reading…