What's the top career for 2011? According to Caroline Ceniza-Levine, founding partner of career coaching company SixFigureStart LLC, it's not what you'd think. "The top career for 2011 is the one that inspires you enough to persist through a difficult job search and market uncertainty," she said. "The market is difficult all around, so even the sectors where there's more hiring than others are competitive."
So how can you stand out amongst the competition to nab your dream job this New Year? Ceniza-Levine says it's easier for a passionate and dedicated jobseeker to get a job in a tough sector than a marginally-interested jobseeker in a booming sector.
Also, Ceniza-Levine stresses the importance of understanding the cycles in the job market. "Remember that there are up and down markets and hiring freezes, even in the below list of top careers, so you should pick a career you can stick with through the ups and downs, rather than chasing what you think is an easy sector."
Keep reading to discover our expert picks for the top careers of the New Year.
Security/forensics regulation; fraud analyst -- According to Sunny K. Lurie, PhD, CEO and founder of Fast Focus Careers, this position is on the rise. "Background checks for pre-employment has increased tremendously," she said.
Network systems and data communications analyst
Environmental educator -- Select a career that allows you to give back. "Help people learn about natural lifestyle choices for the green economy," Lurie said.
Sustainability coordinator -- Lurie says this position is in charge of promoting and monitoring recycling, waste reduction and energy efficiency.
Physician's assistant and medical scientist
Pharmacists -- According to Danny Cahill, president and CEO of recruiting firm Hobson Associates and author of Harper's Rules: A Recruiters Guide to Finding a Dream Job and the Right Relationship, the future belongs to medicine and education, which means that the future belongs to those in medicine and education.
Computer software engineers -- "China is catching up so fast. There will always be a huge demand for those who design, develop and test systems and software," Cahill said.
Human resource managers -- As Cahill points out, HR managers have become trusted experts in improving efficiency, reducing costs and increasing profits. "There's a direct link between hiring the right people and overall success. These are your talent scouts."
Registered nurse -- According to Cahill, every 11 seconds a baby boomer turns 50. "This will create a projected 587,000 nursing jobs by 2016, and the top 10% will earn between $90-110,000!" Cahill said.
Crisis managers -- Minimizing threats is the name of their game. "Communication specialists deal with the media, preserve branding and soften messaging," said Cahill. "This field will create 43,000 jobs in the next four years."
Want more career ideas? Check out this article about six women with unusual careers.
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