This is the Perfect Economy for You

‘JT & Dale Talk Jobs’ is the largest nationally syndicated career advice column in the country and can be found at JTandDale.com. Dear J.T. & Dale: I have been unemployed for the past few months and learned that I enjoy being at home. I need to work, but a flexible schedule, working from home, would be perfect. How do I find at-home jobs that aren't scams? — Annette Dale: I just met someone who'd recently become a "remote employee," meaning that he now does his job from home. He told me, grinning, "I get up in the morning, put on my bathrobe and 'commute' down the stairs to my office in the dining room." Naturally, a lot of folks would like to score those jobs. Hence, the scams. J.T.: The most common way people are earning money is through being "affiliates" for advertising. They post ads from various sources on Web sites and earn income when visitors click on the ads. Unfortunately, unless you are super-savvy about Web traffic, you may not see the income you desire. What I'd suggest instead is to identify your skills and figure out which ones could be done from home, then build a personal brand that will enable you to market your business-of-one to companies. For example, a woman I know who's very adept at data entry on the computer wanted to work from home. She started networking with everyone she knew, asking about challenges involving data entry. Eventually, one friend mentioned that there was always a huge pile of data-entry work at the end of each day at her company. She got her friend to connect her with management, and now she regularly does the data entry that the full-time day staff can't get to. Dale: The businesses I've owned through the years have always used at-home employees to supplement the regular staff. My market-research company employed at-home report writers, data-entry clerks and interviewers. It amazes me that more companies don't do this; having employees who work from home means less office overhead and fewer HR emergencies ("Did you see what Jennifer was wearing today — she's practically naked!"). Companies large and small are figuring this out — airline reservation agents, salespeople and many others are going "remote." However, these jobs are so desirable that not only do they not get advertised, but companies have internal waiting lists. So, J.T. is right about marketing yourself as an independent supplier. This economy, where employers are uncertain, is perfect for you, because employers can get your help without making a commitment to full-time employment. jt-dale-logo Jeanine "J.T." Tanner O'Donnell is a professional development specialist and founder of CAREEREALISM.com. Dale Dauten's latest book is "(Great) Employees Only: How Gifted Bosses Hire and De-Hire Their Way to Success" (John Wiley & Sons). Please visit them at jtanddale.com, where you can send questions via e-mail, or write to them in care of King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St, 15th Floor, New York, NY 10019. © 2009 by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

When most people think of Nike, they think of shoes, retail stores, and, of course, athletes. That's all true, but there's more. Behind Nike's walls, you'll find the doers and thinkers who design, create, and innovate every day. There are also data scientists who discover and leverage athlete insights to create the future of sport.

You might be surprised to learn about the impact you can have in Data & Analytics at Nike versus at a major tech giant. Nike employees get to work on a wide array of challenges, so if you're obsessed with math, science, computers, and/or data, and you love sport, these stories may inspire you to work at Nike.

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Employee loyalty is something every company longs for. It's estimated employee turnover costs as much as 130-200% of an employee's salary. When a talented, knowledgeable, trained employee leaves, it's bad for business. And, when lots of them leave, it can be the kiss of death.

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If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the interview situation one of our viewers, Remi submitted. He was in an interview and was asked the question: How many cows are there in Canada right now? - What a weird question but this is a technique that some hiring managers are using these days.

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If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Kevin submitted. He is a college student who's working a part time job to make ends meet. The manager/owner of the company has become a micro-manager who watches him work on camera and reads his company emails. A bit over the top wouldn't you say?

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All work and no play can create a tense and unwelcoming environment. Studies have shown that employers that offer additional perks have employees that are happier and more loyal to their place of employment. If you are looking for an employer that acknowledges how important it is to give its employees a place to de-stress and bond with their co-workers, check out these companies!

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In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if you worked for an owner who micro-manages you my watching you work on camera and reading through your company emails.

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

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