Making a Seasonal Job a Career
Take George, for example. He's an avid skiier and sailor. He can't imagine sitting behind a desk all day, so, he has taken his avocations and merged them into a way to make a living. A living, that is, doing what he wants to do, rather than what he has to do. He teaches skiing during the winter and works on a schooner that sails the coastline of eastern Long Island, New York during the summer. Similarly, another New Yorker cut back his law practice so he could spend long weekends giving private cruises on his yacht.
Jeannie loves to participate in the summer theater festival that takes place in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains. During the rest of year, she teaches dance to school children. Vincent, who is semi-retired, collects his pension and works as an income tax preparer during tax season.
It can take some juggling, but, for those who want variety, flexiblity, fun, and even adventure in their life, a mix of seasonal jobs can be an ideal way to build a work (and life) experience that matches their interests.
How to Explore Seasonal Job Options
Don't Quit your day job - at least not yet. You're going to need to consider how you can make enough money to pay the bills and how you are going to get health insurance coverage, if you need it. Most importantly, you're going to need to decide what it is you want to do.
Research Options. The Back Door Guide to Short-Term Job Adventures is an excellent resource to start your research. Work experiences are listed in categories which include adventure jobs, outdoor jobs, heartfelt work, and transitions abroad. Review both cool jobs and some more mundane seasonal jobs. You never know what may grab your interest. CoolWorks is another excellent place to find a job for any season in just about any location. In addition to job postings, the blogs written by real people who are living their dream are well worth a read.
Don't Limit Your Options. Just because you've been an accountant, for example, your whole life, doesn't mean that you need to stay one. Earlier in my career, I managed a team that installed greeting card departments in retail stores. The best employee I had was the former regional manager for a very large company. He worked because he wanted to, not because he had to and he did a terrific job.
Be Creative. Dream a little - or dream a lot. First of all, think about your dream job. Is it feasible? Is it a remote possibility? Could it work? If the answer to any of those questions is yes, you have a starting point. Consider how much income your dream job will generate, what the schedule will be like, then work your other job options around it.
Try Before You Buy. Or at least try before you commit. Temporary agency positions are available in just about every career field and location. In many cases, you can apply online to the temp agency of your choice. Many seasonal jobs are flexible, as well. You may be able to take a job on a short-term basis, then extend the time frame, if it's working out for you and for the employer.
Seasonal Job Listings. Seasonal jobs are available in a wide variety of career fields and in many locations. Here are some good sources for job listings:
- Cool Jobs
- Film, Television, and Theater Jobs
- Part Time Jobs
- Seasonal Jobs
- Summer Jobs
- Ski and Snow Jobs
- Temp Jobs
Annual Seasonal Jobs
Once you have obtained your first seasonal job, it can become your "regular" seasonal job. Prior year's employees often have the first option for the next season. So, if you do a good job, your chances of being rehired are high.
It's important to remember that you may not get rich weaving your interests into a multi-level career, but, you will spend your work time doing what you enjoy, and even playing, and sometimes that's worth a lot more than money.