Career Calling

August 18, 2015

Martin Luther King and Career Change

 

Martin Luther King is a great model for anyone who wants to change careers.  King was a minister and could have stayed in his church.  He would have done good work and helped many people.  However, he had a higher calling.  The minister became a champion for civil rights, and he changed history.

King’s own words are invaluable for anyone looking to change careers or make any major change in life:  “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

I changed careers when I turned 40.  That was 14 years ago.  There were plenty of starts and stops, interviews that felt like a waste of time.  Finally I found a place to start my new career.  Several of my clients have had similar experiences.  As Dr. King said, “faith” is the key.  If we believe in ourselves, we’ll see the “whole staircase” and find our new path.

January 18, 2015

A Work of Art and the Voice of Justice

 

I saw Ana DuVarney’s film Selma last night. It is a powerful, wonderful depiction of an ugly era of American history and the heroes that fought against injustice. While Martin Luther King is central to the story, DuVarney includes a wide cast of characters that stretch from the historically famous to people with names long forgotten. She also shows King as an imperfect man who still deserves our deepest admiration. The violence depicted made me wince at points, but that is necessary to make us remember what injustice and cruelty African Americans suffered for generations – and still face too often. There is a great debate over Oscar snubs for the director and lead actor. I’ve seen several of the nominated films and agree with those who ask why this great film did not receive more recognition. Some critics charge that it is racism and point to Oscar evaluators who are predominantly white, old, and male. That may be true. But, as King showed us, good can often grow out of bad. Hopefully the controversy will motivated more people to see this film. I also hope that Selma will be shown in schools for generations to come. Ana DuVarney has given us history – complex and powerful.

Tomorrow is the day the nation honors Martin Luther King. It will be a great day to reflect on what has changed and what hasn’t

August 28, 2013

Good Work is Part of the Dream

Today is the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington.  While everyone correctly remembers Martin Luther King’s role as a civil rights champion, we should not forget his commitment to workplace justice.  King often walked with striking workers.  He preached the need for good jobs and good wages.  Surely his voice would ring out today as an advocate for those low wages workers who are asking America to wake up.  Tomorrow will be a day of strikes and direct action in the fast food industry.  If Dr. King were alive, he would be standing with our brothers and sisters who labor at minimum wage jobs with no benefits.  He knew that all Americans deserve equal opportunity – and a living wage.

January 22, 2013

Dr. King and Justice for Working People

We often think of Rev. Martin Luther King simply as a champion of civil rights and racial equality.  In today’s Daily Kos, Laura Clawson reminds us that King’s struggle also focused economic justice and working people.  She points out that 10% of working families today are living in poverty.  King put the workers’ plight in these words:  “If we are going to get equality, if we are going to get adequate wages, we are going to have to struggle for it.”

King used the word we, a word often invoked in the president’s speech today.  Let’s hope that this country can come together, and work together, to see that we all rise up – together.