Want to live at the beach? Train for job to match locale

Friday, August 5, 2011, Vol. 35, No. 31

Where you want to live should influence the type of career and industry you are considering.

Certain jobs tend to be located in specific cities and regions of the country. Other jobs can be found throughout the country in urban and non-urban locations. The ease of finding a job you desire can be quite specific to the occupation or industry you select for a career.

When the economy is not doing well, the availability of jobs in a specific community can be greatly affected. And even in a booming employment economy, some job types may not be available at all in some communities.

Consideration should be given to not only your occupation of interest, but also to the industry or industries you are interested in working. Some occupations, such as accounting, can cross industry lines. Others are concentrated in one industry.

However, if you want to work in the automotive manufacturing industry, you would potentially have a much greater chance of finding a job in Detroit than Fort Lauderdale. So if you want to live near the beach in a warm area the year round, the automotive industry probably is not a good career choice.

However, if you wanted to work in the resort/hotel industry, your chances would be much greater that you could live in a city near a beach, such as Fort Lauderdale. Some metro areas, like Nashville, on-the-other-hand, have opportunities in both industries.

What all this means is your occupation along with industry can influence your options and choices in life. If flexibility in location is an important part of your lifestyle, care in selecting a field of employment should be very important.

Most people do not consider this when deciding on a career and are confronted later by barriers after investing time and money in education and training. By the time many have discover the limitations where they can live because of their occupation, it is difficult for them to make adjustments.

As an example, as some people in the Northeast grow older they decide they want to move to the Sun Belt to get away from the snow. Sometimes it is the other way around. The career and industry they are in may greatly affect their chances of being able to make such a move until they retire.

Or, if in an industry is facing significant layoffs, the field an employee is in can greatly affect their chances of moving to another region of the country and easily finding employment.

Some industries are more prone to growth. The demand for employees trained to fill occupations in these industries should grow as the industry does, thus expanding location opportunities.

Some regions and cities are projected to have more growth than others. Some studies show parts of the South, West and Southwest will see greater numbers of new jobs in the next 10 years. Some specific cities in other parts of the country will also see growth, but the overall regions are not expected to experience expansion.

So, when considering a career or industry, review your options, including where you want to live. If you like flexibility of location, put that in as part of your selection equation. But remember, that your needs and desires may change over time including where you may want to live.

M.B. Owens is a Nashville-based columnist and journalist with a decade of experience writing on employment topics and business. He can be reached at mariusowens@aol.com.