Test-Drive Your Dream Job - NBC New York

Test-Drive Your Dream Job

Pink slipped? Worried that you're about to be? Time to revisit your dream career -- and one service lets you try before you buy

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    With pink slips aboundng, it might be time to think about your career's next act -- and Vocation Vacations lets you try it out.

    So let's see what we learned last week:

    1) unemployment is at a 15-year high, and

    2) all the bankers who played hide-and-seek with your life savings and then got downsized for it are now following their bliss.

    You, in the midst of all this, are thinking, hey, I'll probably get laid off anyway. And even if I don't, I'll spend all my time worrying about the possibility of it. When what I really want to do is ___________.

    We're imagining you filled in that blank with the career you've secretly always wanted to pursue -- "be a baker" or "start my own doggie daycare" or somesuch - but never have because it would require starting over, more training or a different degree, or hustling to make a wealth of contacts you wouldn't know where to begin to find.

    If any of this rings a bell, we'd suggest giving Vocation Vacations a call. The Seattle-based company offers a terrific service: They hook you up with someone who has your dream job - from choreographer to chef to fashion designer to PR rep - and will mentor you for a chunk of time and answer your every question about the business. In other words, it's sort of like taking your dream job around the block for a spin. The company has more than 300 mentors all over the country who are ready to be shadowed by you as they show you the ropes of being a brewmaster/horsetrainer/music producer.

    At the end of your mentorship, you'll probably know if it's something you really want to pursue - and have a professional opinion about your chances from someone who knows that world intimately. And if you really click with the gig and the mentor, you may even find yourself with an advocate on the inside. And all for a relatively small fee - Vocation vacations run from the mid-three figures to the low four figures. As for the knowledge, inside look, and contacts? Priceless.