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The Boston Globe

The top ten career books: an experts' list

The Boston Globe, 9/7/03

Looking for help with the job hunt or with a career change? These books and printed materials have been recommended by career counselors, coaches, and recruiters:

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  1. ''What Color Is Your Parachute 2004: A Practical Manual for Job-Hunter & Career,'' by Richard Nelson Bolles (2003, Ten Speed Press, $17.95 paperback)
    Regarded as the nation's leading job-search book, this manual debuted more than 25 years ago. Bolles warns that scouring the want ads or perusing Internet job sites won't get you the job you want. Instead, he urges readers to be proactive. That means figuring out who you are and what you want, finding people in those fields to discuss ways to break in, networking like crazy, and contacting the companies that offer the work you do for informational interviews.
     
  2. ''I Don't Know What I Want, But I Know It's Not This: A Step-by-Step Guide to Finding Gratifying Work,'' by Julie Jansen (2003, Penguin Books, $14 paperback)
    How many people do work they just don't like? Jansen sets out to help readers discover the work they are best suited for. Her guide is a bit like the assistance one might receive from a personal coach: It teaches readers how to evaluate their skills and interests and use that information to determine their life's work. Then, Jansen helps readers put an action plan in place.
     
  3. ''Don't Wait Until You Graduate II,'' by Keith Fluscher (2003, New Horizons Press Publishers Inc., $14.95 paperback)
    The goal of this practical guide is to assist college students in finding employment through a variety of methods. The author's primary message: Finding meaningful work is a job that should begin months before you're awarded that degree.
     
  4. ''The Networking Survival Guide: Get the Success You Want By Tapping Into the People You Know,'' by Diane Darling (2003, McGraw Hill Companies, $14.95 paperback)
    Boston-based author Darling is a networking maven. Her guide, a primer for the uninitiated, outlines the most effective way to network at meetings, professional associations, even parties.
     
  5. ''How To Write A Résumé If You Didn't Go To College: A Guide For Administrative Assistants, Technicians, Production Workers,'' by Richard H. Beatty, (2003, John Wiley & Sons, $16.95 paperback)
    Hourly workers make up 75 percent of the nation's work force, but there are few job-search guides or tools that address their needs. This book is different. It offers sample résumés, a step-by-step guide to creating a résumé, and tips on how to craft a résumé that highlights experience instead of higher education.
     
  6. ''The Back Door Guide To Short Term Job Adventures: Internships, Extraordinary Experiences, Seasonal Jobs, Volunteering & Work Abroad,'' by Michael Landes (2002, Ten Speed Press, $21.95 paperback)
    Work doesn't have to be unexciting. This book is for people of all ages, but college students should find it particularly appealing. It offers a variety of creative job experiences for individuals who are exploring new avenues.
     
  7. ''Best Career and Education Web Sites: A Quick Guide to Online Job Search,'' by Anne Wolfinger & Rachel S. Gordon (August 2003, GistWorks Inc., $12.95 paperback)
    An up-to-date primer that offers information on the best way to use Internet job search sites, with information on some of the leading sites currently on the Web.
     
  8. ''Résumés That Knock 'Em Dead 2002,'' by Martin John Yate (2002, Adams Media Publishing Co., $10.95 paperback)
    This well-known guide provides step-by-step information on how to put together a résumé in today's competitive job market.
     
  9. ''New Women's Dress for Success,'' by John T. Molloy (1996, Warner Books, $13) and ''John T. Molloy's New Dress for Success'' (1988, Warner Books, $13.99)
    Molloy invented the genre in his 1975 classic, last updated for men in 1988 but still worth a look; and a more recent volume for women. Molloy's secret: painstaking research, including the use of focus groups.
     
  10. ''101 Great Answers to the Toughest Interview Questions,'' by Ronald W. Fry (February 2000, Career Press Inc., $11.95 paperback)
    The interview isn't exactly what it used to be. Today, job seekers are more likely to face a team of interviewers armed with questions designed to test what you know and whether you are the right fit for the company. The questions in this book are designed to help you prepare for the unexpected.
     
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Order the books online now:

What Color Is Your Parachute 2005: A Practical Manual for Job-Hunter & Career by Richard Nelson Bolles (2004, Ten Speed Press)

I Don't Know What I Want, But I Know It's Not This: A Step-by-Step Guide to Finding Gratifying Work by Julie Jansen (2003, Penguin Books)

Don't Wait Until You Graduate II by Keith Fluscher (2003, New Horizons Press Publishers Inc.)

The Networking Survival Guide: Get the Success You Want By Tapping Into the People You Know by Diane Darling (2003, McGraw Hill Companies)

How To Write A Résumé If You Didn't Go To College: A Guide For Administrative Assistants, Technicians, Production Workers by Richard H. Beatty, (2003, John Wiley & Sons)

The Back Door Guide To Short Term Job Adventures: Internships, Extraordinary Experiences, Seasonal Jobs, Volunteering & Work Abroad by Michael Landes (2002, Ten Speed Press)

Best Career and Education Web Sites: A Quick Guide to Online Job Search by Anne Wolfinger & Rachel S. Gordon (August 2003, GistWorks Inc.)

Résumés That Knock 'Em Dead 2002 by Martin John Yate (2002, Adams Media Publishing Co.)

New Women's Dress for Success by John T. Molloy (1996, Warner Books) and John T. Molloy's New Dress for Success (1988, Warner Books,

101 Great Answers to the Toughest Interview Questions by Ronald W. Fry (February 2000, Career Press Inc.)