I ran into an old co-worker today. I was rather surprised to see him, even more so when I found out what he was doing.
There are a lot of people that are out of work right now due to the credit market and real estate decline. I've been in the Real Estate and Mortgage industry since 1992. Regardless of how you feel about people in this industry, let me assure you there were many of us who made a decent living, but never got rich. We weren't profiting from having swindled unsuspecting homeowners. A lot of good people that worked back office jobs are out of work. Wage earners that didn't make bonuses or commission are finding it hard to get jobs in other sectors, because of the "taint" of having worked in the mortgage industry. Times are tough in general.
This particular co-worker had entered into a service job. He had been a loan officer. He never had a big book of business, but he treated his clients well, ethically and professionally. His change of circumstance was surprising. He is smart and clever and I would have expected him to move towards something more professional, a sales position perhaps. He told me about another co-worker of ours that had also changed professions, and that was surprising too.
I'm lucky that I'm able to do what I know best. I struggled to get here and had my own span of a little better than a year when I wasn't sure what my next step would be. Can we change our fate? There have been many great people that I have known throughout my career that I would like to work with again. Can I impact their fate? Change the course of their life? I hope that with the opportunities presented where I am now, that I can make positive change. I can always dream.