Related collections and offers
“One of the first job-hunting books on the market. It is still arguably the best. And it is indisputably the most popular.”—Fast Company
What Color Is Your Parachute? is the world’s most popular job-hunting guide. This completely updated edition features the latest resources, strategies, and perspectives on today’s job market, revealing surprising advice on what works—and what doesn’t—so you can focus your efforts on tactics that yield results.
At its core is Richard N. Bolles’s famed Flower Exercise, a unique self-inventory that helps you design your career—and your life—around your key passions, transferable skills, traits, and more.
This practical manual also provides essential tips for writing impressive resumes and cover letters, networking effectively, interviewing with confidence, and negotiating the best salary possible.
Whether you’re searching for your first job, were recently laid off, or are dreaming of a career change, What Color Is Your Parachute? will guide you toward a fulfilling and prosperous life’s work.
|Publisher:||Clarkson Potter/Ten Speed|
|Product dimensions:||8.90(w) x 5.90(h) x 1.10(d)|
About the Author
Katharine Brooks is an award-winning, nationally certified counselor and board-certified coach. She is the author of What Color is Your Parachute? for College and You Majored in What?: Designing Your Path from College to Career and writes a blog, “Career Transitions,” for Psychology Today.
Read an Excerpt
Introduction to the 2022 Edition
Why are you reading this book?
Maybe someone recommended it to you. Lots of people do. While working on this latest edition, I lost count of the number of people who told me “my mother bought it for me” or “a friend used that book—and it worked!” Maybe you’re hoping to change your career, or you’re seeking your first job, or you’re returning to the workplace after some time away. Maybe recent changes in the economy have forced you to seek a new job—or even a new career field. Whatever your job or career challenge, the highly successful system in What Color Is Your Parachute? is your solution. And this new edition has much to offer:
• Updated career advice and information
• Specific guidance on changing careers, no matter your age
• Techniques for winning the mind game of the job search
• Employer-based advice for all aspects of the job search
• Advice for dealing with challenges you fear are holding you back
• Suggestions on how to connect with advocacy groups and others who can support you
• Special tips for job seekers who are introverts
• Updated social media advice, especially for job-search powerhouse LinkedIn
• Helpful rubrics to quickly analyze and improve your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile
• Tips for creating powerful interview stories
• Internet-based job-search techniques and resources that actually work
• Salary and benefits negotiation guidance
• And, of course, the highly popular, successful, and classic Flower Exercise, which has been revised and updated
When What Color Is Your Parachute? was first published in 1970, it revolutionized the concept of job hunting. Unlike traditional guides to the job market, it helped job seekers understand themselves first, then find the jobs that fit, using a mix of good-humored advice and practical strategy. Richard N. Bolles also went against conventional wisdom to update the book annually, keeping it constantly relevant to new generations of job hunters facing changing times. By the time Richard passed away, it had become the bestselling job-hunting book in the world, with numerous awards and more than ten million copies published in twenty-two languages.
I have used his books throughout my own career; whether working in human resources at a department store, studying for my master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling (where this book was required reading), or providing career counseling and coaching to a broad range of individuals through good and bad economic times. It is an honor to be asked to work on this edition and continue the important tradition of yearly revision.
Much of What Color Is Your Parachute? is written in the first person, so throughout this book you will see the word “I.” Sometimes it will refer to Richard Bolles; sometimes to me. Most of the time it doesn’t matter. Where the ownership of the statement is significant, you’ll see (RB) after statements attributable to Richard Bolles and (KB) after statements attributable to Katharine Brooks.
What I love about the Parachute Approach is the level playing field it provides for all job seekers in every employment sector. In Richard’s writings, you see his timeless advice and wisdom in action. His compassion and respect for all workers. His emphasis on the importance of choosing your career and not letting the job market choose it for you. His encouragement to take the time to do a thorough self-evaluation before hitting the job market. And his belief in the importance of all careers, from pipe fitters to harp builders to doctors. With his usual aplomb, he deconstructed the holy grail of every job seeker: a job that fits your passions and fulfills your life mission. And he was quite transparent, practical, and honest in his approach to that search.
On the top of my computer, I have a sticker that reads “This Isn’t Career Development. This Is Rocket Fuel.” Well, Richard and I don’t have a rocket, but we do have a parachute to offer you. A way to land efficiently and happily in this crazy, messy landscape we call the job market. Safe and fulfilling journeys to you all.
—Katharine “Kate” Brooks
Table of Contents
Introduction to the 2022 Edition 1
Chapter 1 Welcome to the Ever-Changing World of the Job Search
The length of the average job hunt has increased dramatically. The length of time the average job lasts has decreased dramatically. The way jobs are done is changing. 5
Chapter 2 The Job Search Is a Mind Came: Here Are Ten Ways to Win
You have a choice in how you view your job search. Choose hope. Choose a positive outlook. 23
Chapter 3 How to Deal with Any Challenges You Have in the Job Search
Being turned down for a job can lead to thinking there is something about you that caused it. 37
Chapter 4 Choose a Career, Change a Career, or Find a Job: What Works
There are different ways you can go about the job hunt. Each has a different chance of success. The Traditional Approach begins with the job market. The Parachute Approach begins with you. 71
Chapter 5 Introduction to the Flower Exercise
At the heart of this book is the Flower Exercise: a self-inventory in which you examine seven ways of thinking about yourself, using the language of the workplace. 97
Chapter 6 The Flower Exercise: A Comprehensive Self-Inventory
You have a much better chance of finding work using this method than if you just sent out a resume. Not just work, but work you really want to do. If you are thinking about a career change, you will discover what new direction you want to pursue. 111
Chapter 7 You Get to Choose Where You Work
Find out what careers or work your Flower Diagram points to. Try on jobs before you decide which ones to pursue. Research places thoroughly and utilize contacts. 189
Chapter 8 Your Resume Is Already Online
There's a new resume in town, and it's online. Remove anything that contradicts the impression you would like to make. Expand your positive professional presence. 211
Chapter 9 Fifteen Tips About Your Job Interview
What to keep in mind during hiring conversations. 243
Chapter 10 The Five Secrets of Salary Negotiation
How to get the best salary possible. 279
Chapter 11 How to Start Your Own Business
There is another choice if you don't want to work for someone else. 293
The Blue Pages: Finding Your Mission in Life
From the original writings of Richard N. Bolles. 309
The Final Words 327
About the Authors 333