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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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This book has 23 5-star reviews, all placed around the same date and the majority by reviewers with no other review history. Still, I thought I'd give it a go, but played safe and got the book from the library. That was a good choice, as the book is pretty much useless.

The crux of the book is 'networking', but it's a kind of fantasy networking that just doesn't exist anymore - if it ever did. The principle is that you already have a strong network of hundreds upon hundreds of people that will happily slot you into well paid and rewarding employment in any career field of your choice, and that any successful person will fall over themselves to give you the information you need to pitch up in competition to them. Admittedly the book does give a small nod to those with less than a thousand genuine, friendly, powerful contacts, and suggests a quick cold call to a total stranger at senior manager level will see you in your dream job within seconds. This is all absolute madness, and I hope to the heavens no-one ever quits their day job believing this tosh.

Elsewhere the book is just feeble case studies (everyone magically gets their unrealistic dream job immediately, with no difficulties or money issues to overcome), and stinkingly obvious and overcomplicated 'personality tests'. Advice to hire a career coach is shoehorned in everywhere... and guess what? The authors themselves are career coaches for hire! What a co-incidence!

All in, the book is only saved from one-star because I didn't have to pay for it. If you're going to pay for a similar book I'd recommend Escape from Corporate Hell: Unlock your potential and love your work as really helpful for career upgrading/changing.
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on 5 May 2015
I have read this book twice, once in 2011 when it helped me work out how to move within my industry - a goal I had already preordained. Perhaps that is why I ended up reading it again, the ideas from the first sitting had percolated but not landed - in hindsight starting the book with a strong view on the required career outcome was not right for me and by 2013 I knew I really had to take much more of a lead in my own career.

On this second read the most useful section was "understanding yourself and what you want". The useful exercises helped me work out what career would better meet my values, it helped me be structured and helped me clarify my skills and qualities. I was then able to make a realistic plan to change career and still celebrate all that I had achieved before then - for me that's the point, just because you career is off track it doesn't mean its been a waste of energy so far. That was a two year, realistic plan that included shoring up my training, saving some money and telling my story - I am now in the latter stages of the plan, but I am on track, and I am clear that this book helped me gain clarity.

To sum up this is a really pragmatic book that gives you lots to think about and includes lots of useful exercises and top tips to do whilst planning your career. I am now a professional coach and I would recommend this as a workbook to my clients.
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on 16 August 2010
Camilla Arnold and Jane Barrett are experienced career coaches who are able to guide you in a constructive way to think about your career direction, and give sound advice based on market knowledge. They have produced a book that reflects this. It has helpful exercises and case studies and is written in a straightforward style without unnecessary wordage. Good sections on what to do in different situations including if a change is forced on you e.g. by redundancy.
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on 10 January 2014
I was given the book by my sister one Christmas a while back after complaining repeatedly I was heading down the wrong career path with no idea how to change track or if it was even possible. I left the book unread for over a year and continued along the same path. I finally came to the realisation something needed to change and found the book on my shelf. It provided some really helpful insights in to what my options were and the possibilities that were open to me using the skills and contacts I already had. I had the motivation to change tracks myself and this book really helped me focus my energies in the right direction. I've completely changed my career, and 18 months in to the new career I'm glad I made the change and thankful for the help this book provided. I'd highly recommend it to anyone wanting to change or further their career.
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on 13 September 2010
If you want to take more control over your career I suggest you read this book. I found the exercises very useful in thinking about how I want to develop my career within the organisation I work for. I have found that further up in an organisation you go the more you need to develop influencing and networking skills and to do this it helps to have a clear idea of what you are aiming for. I have read a few career books in the past many are overly long or very much geared to the American market, whereas this book is international in it's outlook.
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on 1 October 2010
I loved this book. It is a quick and efficient way to get started on your way to a new career. Don't waste time reading books like "What colour is your parachute?" which is just too long and contains information and approaches that I have found outdated. This new guide provides all information you need and brings you on the right track. It is very succinct and to the point. It certainly gave me a nudge into the right direction.
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on 10 December 2012
A really good pragmatic career management book that you can dip in and out of wherever you are in your career. Not just handy for people changing jobs - its really useful too for reflecting on where you are and what you want within your current role. Definitely recommend.
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on 5 December 2012
This book is the ideal aid for the many differing crossroads we all find ourselves at at some point throughout the course of our career. A key element for me was that you are very much made to feel that it doesn't matter 'what' you've done or 'are' doing, the important thing is that you're being proactive now and have made a start by reading this book or are maybe considering or having coaching. With the guidance of Jane and Camilla who write as though you are having an open and encouraging conversation with them, along with the case studies and exercises, you will feel empowered to realise that changing course is possible with commitment. A lesson on 'Your Future Career' should be a mandatory part of the Senior School timetable!
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on 7 March 2011
This is an excellent, very readable guide. It is something you can dip in and out of to find tools and advice to guide you on your journey. I particularly like all the case studies because there is probably an experience shared by one of the studies that will be similar to yours. It gives one confidence that anything is possible with a bit of commitment and effort.
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on 14 July 2010
I have read lots of books about careers and how to change jobs etc and none of them have ever really hit the mark like this one.

Its style really appealed to me. It was very simple and easy to read and almost written like someone is talking to you. I feel if I met the authors that they would talk like they write and be realistic and down to earth.

Great case studies and it has given me a lot of food for thought on the how but with really practical suggestions rather than navel gazing and made me challenge myself.

I found it really helpful and practical. I almost want to write to them to tell them what I am now doing differently.

I recommend this if you know you want to do something else but don't really know what or how or even if you just want to do what you do now but better.
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